A previously unheard collection of seven songs that Duff McKagan wrote and recorded in 1982 with his pre-Guns N’ Roses band the Living will finally be made available to the public on April 16th when it comes out as The Living: 1982. McKagan unveiled the leadoff video for “Two-Generation Stand” alongside the news.
McKagan was just 17 when he joined the Living as a guitarist alongside singer John Conte, bassist Todd Fleischman, and drummer Greg Gilmore. They gigged around the Seattle punk scene and cut seven tracks that were lost for decades until Gilmore recently discovered them and decided it was time they were heard.
“The Living was the beginning of all things Seattle for me — a turning point in my life,” Gilmore says in a statement. “I joined a band and a community. These guys are still my brothers. I’ve cherished these recordings since the days we made them. This record is a fantastic document of a loaded moment. I love it.”
The group lasted little more than few months, but in that time they opened for Canadian punk icons D.O.A. in Vancouver and Seattle. Shortly after those shows, the Living cut the songs that wound up on The Living: 1982, but they dissolved before finding a label to release them. McKagan soon moved to Los Angeles where he met Axl Rose and formed Guns N’ Roses, while Gilmore stayed in Seattle and played a pivotal role in the formation of grunge by playing with Jeff Ament and Stone Gossard in Mother Love Bone.
The Living: 1982 will be released on Gossard’s label Loosegroove, which he resurrected late last year. It will be available digitally and on three different color variants of vinyl.
“It doesn’t matter what year this music was recorded cause it is undeniable,” Gossard said in a statement. “But the fact that Duff, Greg, Todd and John created these fully realized songs in 1982 gives credence to the idea that this band, the Living, are ground zero for the Seattle sound.”
McKagan is amazed that this long-buried music is finally being shared with fans. “Would this even ever get out of our basement?” he asks in a statement. ” We had something magical then, and it was ours, so who gives a fuck!”
The bassist has spent the past few years on the road with Guns N’ Roses on their Not In This Lifetime reunion tour. They hope to return to the road in early June, but as with all planned shows, the pandemic may force them to delay those plans.