In his first solo effort, the bass player for hard rock band Guns N'Roses has really outdone himself. Hoping to gain recognition for his work, Duff McKagan has put out a serious, somewhat personal, but nevertheless rockin' album. With the help of his friends: fellow G N'R buddies Dizzy Reed, Gilby Clarke, Matt Sorum and Slash, as well as Skid Row's Sebastian Bach, Rob Affuso and Dave "Snake" Sabo, Lenny Kravitz, guitar legend Jeff Beck of the Yardbirds, Doc Newmann, and long-time friend Joie Mastrokalos, McKagan's album is bursting at the seams with extraordinary talent.
The songs contained in "Believe in Me" all have lyrics that come from Duff's heart: stories of personal struggles that tell of the different emotions he has felt through the years. The title song is self-explanatory, basically illustrating the fact that he has gone through a lot in his life and would like to be taken seriously. Numerous other songs are about love: love lost, being hurt, and the search for that one "right" woman. In "Man in the Meadow," McKagan pays tribute to a deceased close friend of his Todd Crew. The powerful lyrics describe pain and even slight confusion, which are understandable when dealing with the loss of a loved one: "You had your start, you made your mark, and then you turn around and leave us in the dark: "
I think at times Duff McKagan's talents have been underestimated, and this album definitely makes up for that, as he takes control of lead vocals, guitar, drums and piano on various songs. The old saying holds true: "Give credit where credit is due," and I would like to be the first to applaud him. .
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.