Buckcherry/Jetboy Guitarist Billy Rowe After Meeting Axl Rose & Izzy Stradlin at a W.A.S.P. Show: “Once both our bands got going, we started swapping shows” – 2022

Metal Edge: Guitarist Billy Rowe talks @Buckcherry, his first-ever gig with Jetboy and hanging with Axl and Izzy at a W.A.S.P. show. You can read the entire interview @ this location.


Eventually Jetboy moved from San Francisco down to L.A. What were your first impressions of Los Angeles?

Billy Rowe:

Well by the time we moved there we had already been playing in L.A. for a year or more. Our first gig was at the Roxy with Doll and Madam X, which I think was around June of ’85. And from that point on we would play L.A. at least every other month. We would do gigs in San Francisco and then head down. And there was such a big buzz going at that time – it was the whole Guns N’ Roses, Poison, Faster Pussycat, L.A. Guns era. By ‘85, ‘86, that whole movement was just booming. The clubs were booming. So we had a good following within just a few months playing down there.

But prior to Jetboy, when Fern (Rod) and I were looking for singers, we would drive down to L.A. with a friend of ours, this girl Diane, who was really into W.A.S.P. Anytime they would play, and it was mainly at the Troubadour, we would drive down with her and hang out. That was how we met Izzy Stradlin and Axl Rose in ‘83, ’84. Once both our bands got going, we started swapping shows. So when we moved to L.A., we already had this community and this circle of friends and places to go. We were almost like an L.A. band.

So you met Izzy and Axl at a W.A.S.P. show?

It would’ve been at the Troubadour. W.A.S.P. was playing and a lot of times we wouldn’t even really care to go inside. There was such a scene outside, you could have just as much of a social thing outside the club as you would inside the club. I remember Izzy was leaning against a wall and he had that Andy McCoy, Nasty Suicide, Hanoi Rocks look. And that was everything we were all about. So we just started talking. Then this dude, Chris Weber, came up, and they had the band Hollywood Rose together. And then Axl was there, too. And we all just hit it off. We were all into Hanoi Rocks and Girl and Lords of the New Church and we just instantly clicked. I think that night we went up to Chris Weber’s house and hung out, and the next day we went cruising around record stores. We became fast friends.

What’s coming up in the near future for Billy Rowe?

With Buckcherry, we’re continuing on this Hellbound tour through summertime, and then I think there’s going to be a little bit of a break in September or October. Then we’re doing one of the Kiss Kruises, then Australia, and then I believe that’s going to be it for the year. And in the meantime I have my guitar business with Rock N Roll Relics, and that’s growing as well. But after we finish all the touring for Hellbound we’ll also get started on a new record. Songs are being written now. So that’ll happen. Buckcherry, those guys work like madmen. So we’ll stay busy.

You can read the entire interview @ this location.