Amplifier - Archives

Guns N’ Roses’ ‘Chinese Democracy’: Now Just $2 Plus Shipping


View photo

Guns N' Roses' -- err, Axl Rose and friends' -- Chinese Democracy was one of the most anticipated albums of 2008. It arrived 14 years after GN'R's The Spaghetti Incident? and by all accounts millions upon millions spent in studio and recording fees. Hoping to quickly recoup those lost millions with guaranteed money, Universal Music struck a deal with Best Buy to give the electronics giant an exclusive on Chinese Democracy in the form of 1.6 million copies for $14 million, Blabbermouth reports. Best Buy would then use the exclusive and anticipated Chinese Democracy to draw consumers away from Target and Walmart -- once you're in the store grabbing the new Rose disc, you might wander over to the flat-screen TV department and spend a bundle.

The plan backfired: Chinese Democracy has sold only 614,000 copies so far, stranding Best Buys across the nation with a million unsold copies, thanks in large part to Axl's refusal to promote the album in the U.S. with a tour or even a music video. As a result comes this latest embarrassment in a long stretch of Axl Rose-related embarrassments: Best Buy is now offering Chinese Democracy for $1.99. We doubt this will generate new interest in what's widely regarded as a incredibly mediocre album and a huge drop in quality from the Use Your Illusions, but if Best Buy does happen to unload all million copies of Chinese Democracy, they'll net roughly $2 million, or a seventh of what they paid for the exclusive rights.

View Comments