There were a lot of upset fans when Axl Rose bowed out of the Guns N' Roses Rock and Roll Hall of Fame festivities at the last minute, but there definitely was at least one silver lining to the singer's open letter declaring he would not attend the event.

Slash tells that had Rose not written the letter and actually shown up, it was unlikely there would have been a performance. He explained, "The funny thing is we never would have played had he never written it. I think at one point he alluded he was at least going to go, and so we hadn't really prepared to play at all. We were just going to show up as almost an obligatory thing -- more for the fans than anything. But that letter set a fire that was like, 'Okay, f--- it. We're going to go play.'"

Instead of sitting by and taking in the adulation, inductees Slash, Duff McKagan, Steven Adler and Matt Sorum joined guitarist Gilby Clarke and singer Myles Kennedy onstage to rock through 'Mr. Brownstone,' 'Sweet Child O' Mine,' and 'Paradise City,' and, as Slash remarked recently, were able to close the book on their history with the band.

Slash adds, "It was a really nice event all around, and it was a special moment for all the guys that showed up. It was a nightmare going into it, but when it actually happened it was like, 'This is pretty cool.'"

With the Rock Hall induction behind him, Slash now turns his attention to his latest solo effort. 'Apocalyptic Love' arrives May 22, and he recently kicked off a tour with his band to promote the album.