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Former Guns ‘N Roses Bassist Starts Wealth Management Firm For Rock Stars

Your new financial guru

One day in 1994, while recovering from a ruptured pancreas, Guns ‘N Roses bassist Duff McKagan was puttering around his basement when he happened upon GnR’s financials from the previous six years. Flipping through the reports he had a bit of a panic attack when he realized, “I couldn’t make sense of it. I didn’t know how much we had made or lost on the tour,” and got himself into even more of a tizzy when he though about admitting to someone, “I don’t know what the fuck I’m doing.” So he decided to take some finance classes at Santa Monica Community College and while fronting his new band, Velvet Revolver, started giving financial advice on the side.

…word started spreading that he knew something about managing money. He began getting regular calls from musician friends with questions about everything from whether to buy a house to where they should invest their money.

It was around that time that McKagan realized a coupla things. 1) That he was pretty good at this money management stuff and 2) fellow musicians were comfortable being counseled by him because he didn’t “wear a suit” and therefore wasn’t representative of The Man. And that’s when a lightbulb went off.

He would team up with someone who had a little bit but not much more financial wisdom to impart but who wouldn’t scare off anti-Establishment rockstars with his fancy degrees and experience in the industry because Duff would be there to tell them the guy was cool. McKagan found him in former banker Andy Bottomsley. Together the two will launch Meridian Rock, which will “educate rockers about their finances instead of pandering or lying to them,” and will be straight with colleagues re: whether or not they’re completely broke. The firm is actively seeking money managers in Europe and the US. Here’s what will be expected of you.

McKagan says Meridian Rock’s advisors will talk directly to the talent, in plain and simple terms. The company’s three tenets, he notes, are righteousness (i.e., not screwing people over), transparency, and education.

No word on comp but it seems as though you could easily work in some guarantees for a few groupies at year’s end.

Duff McKagen Launches Wealth Management Firm [Fortune]

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112 Responses to “Former Guns ‘N Roses Bassist Starts Wealth Management Firm For Rock Stars”

  1. AZP says:

    Santa Monica Community College Finance Course > CFA

  2. NakedShort says:

    Hello?

    Is it me your looking for?

    -L. Richie

  3. GroupiesGroupiesGropees says:

    The thought of the talent that’s going to want receptionist / admin positions where they get to meet rock stars makes me almost want an HR job there.

  4. GroupiesGroupiesGropees says:

    The thought of the talent that’s going to want receptionist / admin positions where they get to meet rock stars makes me almost want an HR job there.

  5. GroupiesGroupiesGropees says:

    The thought of the talent that’s going to want receptionist / admin positions where they get to meet rock stars makes me almost want an HR job there.

  6. guest says:

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Other than that, no concerns.

  7. guest says:

    What could possibly go wrong?

    Other than that, no concerns.

  8. Non-Entity Hedge Fund Manager says:

    I’ll wave 100% of my usurious fees for these guys if they support me in live band karaoke one time per year.

    Duff, calllll me…

  9. Non-Entity Hedge Fund Manager says:

    I’ll wave 100% of my usurious fees for these guys if they support me in live band karaoke one time per year.

    Duff, calllll me…

  10. Non-Entity Hedge Fund Manager says:

    I’ll wave 100% of my usurious fees for these guys if they support me in live band karaoke one time per year.

    Duff, calllll me…

  11. Guest says:

    Who’ll play at their Christmas party?

  12. Seaman Bodine says:

    ahhh ahh hah hah hah holy shit!!!!

    – izzy stradlin

  13. Guest says:

    So you’re saying Chinese Democracy was a poor use of money?

    – Axl

  14. DitchDiggers says:

    this movie has already been written

    ~HRJ Capital LLC

  15. DitchDiggers says:

    this movie has already been written

    ~HRJ Capital LLC

  16. Finger Trap says:

    I’ve shared more than finanical advice with Duff.
    -Jeff G.

  17. Finger Trap says:

    I’ve shared more than finanical advice with Duff.
    -Jeff G.

  18. Guest says:

    What is money? SHAARRRRROOOOON!!!!!!!
    Ozzie

  19. Guest says:

    What is money? SHAARRRRROOOOON!!!!!!!
    Ozzie

  20. Financial_Servicer says:

    Big deal.

    -Shia Labeouf

  21. Financial_Servicer says:

    Big deal.

    -Shia Labeouf

  22. C Love says:

    Oh, so you’re supposed to have the babes, lap dances and cars going on before you start taking money and offering financial advice?

    -Christopher Love Blackwell
    Custody, NM

  23. C Love says:

    Oh, so you’re supposed to have the babes, lap dances and cars going on before you start taking money and offering financial advice?

    -Christopher Love Blackwell
    Custody, NM

  24. C Love says:

    Oh, so you’re supposed to have the babes, lap dances and cars going on before you start taking money and offering financial advice?

    -Christopher Love Blackwell
    Custody, NM

  25. C Love says:

    Oh, so you’re supposed to have the babes, lap dances and cars going on before you start taking money and offering financial advice?

    -Christopher Love Blackwell
    Custody, NM

  26. Sir Iggy Pop says:

    How much worse could he do than you MBA-totin’ Ivy League geniuses?

    • Ivy League Genius says:

      Much, much, much worse.

      • Grey-haired MBA/CFA says:

        I disagree. I just heard him speak at the SXSW conference and he was very lucid and properly responded to questions on market timing and equity selection with an excellent MPT/Asset Allocation response – in laymen’s terms. Ivy League Genius’s like George W. Bush and Wall Street assholes have clearly done much worse. Just cause you were born into wealth doesn’t mean you are smarter than a JUCO graduate.

  27. Anonymous says:

    Not saying this guy is a Ponzi scheme but he does illustrate the first rule of building one:

    Find an affinity group like yourself. People are more willing to give you money and trust you if they feel comfortable with you ie look like you, act like you, have the same hobbies, have the same career, belong to the same religion, etc.

    It just goes to show how desperate people are for good advice these days.

  28. Anonymous says:

    Not saying this guy is a Ponzi scheme but he does illustrate the first rule of building one:

    Find an affinity group like yourself. People are more willing to give you money and trust you if they feel comfortable with you ie look like you, act like you, have the same hobbies, have the same career, belong to the same religion, etc.

    It just goes to show how desperate people are for good advice these days.

  29. Anonymous says:

    Not saying this guy is a Ponzi scheme but he does illustrate the first rule of building one:

    Find an affinity group like yourself. People are more willing to give you money and trust you if they feel comfortable with you ie look like you, act like you, have the same hobbies, have the same career, belong to the same religion, etc.

    It just goes to show how desperate people are for good advice these days.

  30. Smartguy says:

    Smart guy to know that going by Duff Capital would be a bad omen

  31. Lenny Dykstra says:

    He doesn’t know jack, not to crap in his house or nothing.

  32. Lenny Dykstra says:

    He doesn’t know jack, not to crap in his house or nothing.

  33. Frustrated Graphic Designer says:

    Imagine the logo possibilities if they’d chosen Duff & Bottomsley…

  34. Frustrated Graphic Designer says:

    Imagine the logo possibilities if they’d chosen Duff & Bottomsley…

  35. Salacious Seahorse says:

    I’ve never been much of a Duff man. I only drink Fudd.

    • Anonymous says:

      I thought they stopped making that stuff when a bunch of hillbillies went blind or something.

    • Anonymous says:

      I thought they stopped making that stuff when a bunch of hillbillies went blind or something.

  36. C. Sheen says:

    What about rock stars from Mars? I don’t usually deal with investments in this particular terrestrial realm, but this sounds like it’s right up my alley.

  37. Spanishmoon says:

    “These fools still didn’t discover my embezzling” –

    Slash

  38. College says:

    It’s totally plausible. My mom is finishing her accounting degree at Texas State and just got funding for a hedge fund. I was never allowed to listen to G-n-R growing up though.

  39. HighBNR says:

    …One day, a couple weeks after leaving TCW, Gundlach found an old Fender Jaguar at a pawn shop in west hollywood. The only thing he could play was the opening riff of “Iron Man”. He got himself into even more of a tizzy when he though about admitting to someone, “I don’t know what the fuck I’m doing.”
    He decided to take some music classes at Santa Monica Community College. Soon, he realized a couple things, 1.) he was pretty good at swinging an axe and 2.) because he was fuckin’ rich and had access to great drugs he could coerce former rock stars, like Mike Starr the former bassist of Alice in Chains to come over and jam. Together the two are starting Fucksaw and gigging around L.A.

  40. EasyMoney says:

    Silver’s down? Well call the Lone Ranger, he’ll cheer him up!!

    -Duff

  41. Bignele says:

    Thats cool…Richie Sambora does my taxes

  42. AmericanBandersnatch says:

    I’m going to start my own wealth management firm “Derek Zoolander Advisors For Models Who Can’t Read Financials Good And Wanna Learn About Other Money Stuff Too”

  43. Gotta Protect Yo Neck! says:

    Being a few IQ points smarter than your idiot-ass rocker friends and starting the next Nails Investments is the NKI.

  44. PPM reader says:

    Their fund could have gone the “rent a Director route” but take a look at what I pulled from the PPM:

    Independant Director: Len E. Dykstra, Twiz…..

    Independat Director: The guy from CHIPs

    This fund has to be legit with those guys involved

  45. Axl Rose, CFP says:

    YOU SUCK!

  46. tt says:

    What is the symbol for the cocaine ETF?

  47. Axe-l says:

    Welcome to the jungle

  48. Put_Option says:

    Meatloaf: “Mind glancing at my portfolio. I hear you have an impressive Sharpe.”

    Duff: “From the looks of it, you have a bull-spread going on hamburgers and blow, and are short salads and treadmills.”

  49. In defense of Duff, he did continue past the community college course, enrolling at Seattle University’s Albers School of Business before leaving a semester short of graduating. His heart is in the right place, but I would not trust a Brit if I were him, and would bring a top accounting firm and major American bank into the relationship quick fast before things get Madoffistic.

    • Good call says:

      Right because major American bank operations are squarely aligned with their clients’ best interests.

      • No, because a major bank, like perhaps Northern Trust as a custodian of client funds, might be infinitely more reassuring and reliable, when combined with a known accounting firm, and when the money management firm is started by novices of dubious background and capability.

    • Good call says:

      Right because major American bank operations are squarely aligned with their clients’ best interests.

    • Will says:

      What’s with the “would not trust a Brit”?

  50. Guest says:

    Call me!

    – Adam Wyden, former DE Shaw intern, CEO at ADW Capital Partners

  51. Charles Norwall says:

    I think this is great. It’s not like he’s going to be managing a hedge fund, or some other such investment vehicle where you lose if you’re not on the cutting edge of the competition. I think most of the Wealth management for rock stars will start with things like “spend less than you make,” and other such common sense.

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