Axl Rose expressed his gratitude for being able to both perform and speak at Lisa Marie Presley’s memorial service, deeming it an honor. “I didn’t really know I was going to speak or anything,” the Guns N’ Roses singer told Entertainment Tonight. “I still feel like I don’t know that I deserve to be here. But I wanted to try to do right by her and her family and her fans. So it meant a lot, but I was pretty nervous and emotional up there.”
“It was my understanding, she actually talked about the situation … so that’s why I was asked to do it,” Rose said about performing the 1991 hit. “Of course, I had to be here.” As the service progressed, Axl stepped onto the stage. He gave a heartfelt speech about his friend before playing an emotionally charged song on the piano.
“I’m sure many of you are still in shock as I feel,” Rose told those assembled. “I’ll continue to be for quite some time. I feel like I’m supposed to be texting her right now. Saying, ‘I’m here,’ telling her how wonderful everyone is.” Axl added, “I never in a million years imagined singing here, especially under these circumstances. This is truly devastating.”
The musician extolled Lisa Marie’s family devotion and how she felt an immense responsibility to honor Elvis‘ memory. “I do know Lisa loved her family very much. [She] was fiercely protective of her father and his legacy — both her love for him and his love for her. She was extremely proud as anyone could ever be of her father. [Of] his many accomplishments, his place in music and American and world history,” Rose said.
Axl Rose pointed out how much Lisa Marie Presley loved the ‘Elvis’ film
At the service, Austin Butler – who stars in Baz Lurhmann’s film Elvis– attended. He was accompanied by his girlfriend Kaia Gerber and sister Ashley Butler. Rose highlighted just how pertinent this motion picture is. “She was also very proud of the Elvis movie and how she felt it portrayed her father and the care that was put into the film by those involved,” Axl said.
Axl highlighted Lisa Marie’s commitment to assisting others after the death of her son in 2020. “With Ben’s passing, Lisa’s life and the rest of her family and loved ones took a turn down a hard road,” he recalled. “She was honoring for honoring to the best of her abilities, seeking out help, choosing to help others who experienced or experiencing such a such a loss and pain.”
“We’re gathered here today to pay our respects to Lisa and her family. Lisa is loved and missed by many. [She] will continue to be loved and missed by all those whose lives she touched. Thank you.” Axl then delivered a heart-wrenching performance of Guns N’ Roses’ “November Rain.” On January 12, Lisa Marie Presley passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest. The 54-year-old was laid to rest in Graceland‘s Meditation Garden alongside her son.