Tom Cruise and I were talking about the beach and I had been to Pensacola, Florida recently. He told me that when they were scouting for locations for the film “Taps”that they looked at the Naval base in Pensacola.
We talked about my grandfather who had been an avaitor and would also serve in the Navy during World War II.
Ideas started being thrown around for a film when a friend of Tom’s who was listening walked by and announced “Top Gun“. Kurt Cobain jumped out of seat and said, “Guns N’ Roses“.
The first song I would write for the band was “Welcome to the Jungle” inspired by Michael Hutchence and I working on ideas for the film Crocodile Dundee, the name of which was inspired by the Jungle Book song “Parade Song of the Camp Animals” about Bonnie Dundee. Used in the lyrics is a mention of “disease” which was inspired by one of my favorite Beatle’s songs “Come Together” with the lyrics, “Hold you in his armchair you can feel his disease”.
I continued writing songs which the band recorded and includes Paradise City and Sweet Child O’ Mine. I would also write the song My Michelle which was inspired by The Beatle’s song “Michelle”. Michael Hutchence decided to give his first fake public girlfriend the name of Michelle (sometimes spelled Michele) Bennett. Courtney Love would also choose the name for part of her stage name.
The band would claim Izzy’s girlfriend’s name is Desi which is a reference to Lucille Ball’s husband. Izzy was my grandmother’s nickname and short for Isabelle.
Someone else wrote “Rocket Queen” which was a reference to the name of the pee-wee football team I cheered for. This also inspired me to name a band “Love and Rockets” (former members of Bauhaus) and to write the song “Rocket” for Def Leppard.