Home Music The Death of Billy White Jr., Guns N’ Roses’ Appetite for Destruction with the Emblem of the Cross

The Death of Billy White Jr., Guns N’ Roses’ Appetite for Destruction with the Emblem of the Cross

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Billy White Jr., the artist who designed the iconic cross logo on the album cover for Guns N’ Roses’ appetite for destruction, He died. Slash posted the sad news on Instagram, paying tribute to White.

Sharing a photo of Billy, he wrote: “RIP #BillyWhiteJr og designer for the GNR cross logo and longtime friend of the band. We will miss you.” Duff McKagan commented on Slash’s post: “Oh damn!”

As reported by Planet Radio, White was originally tapped to design a tattoo for Axl Rose, who envisioned the idea of ​​a cross with the skulls of each member of the band. White was an art student at Long Beach University at the time and crossed paths with GN’R through his cousin in 1986.


“One day Axel called and asked if I could get him a tattoo, after he saw a drawing I had drawn on my cousin’s wall,” White told the now-defunct Culture Creature in a 2016 interview. “The cross and skulls that looked like the band It was Axl’s idea, the rest is me – The Knot in the Cross was a reference to Thin Lizzy, a band that Axl and I love.”

White’s original pencil drawing was eventually embodied in a full-color design on Bristol paper using watercolor, zinc, and ink. A separate artist, Andy Engel, made improvements to the design, which was then applied to the inside sleeve of the original pressings of appetite for destruction.

The famous, the original appetite The cover of the LP featured Robert Williams’ controversial painting of a robot that had just committed a violent act of sexual assault – a cover that led to the album being banned from some retailers.


Geffen quickly swapped, placing the white cross design on the sleeve and affixing Williams art to the inner sleeve. While the original banned prints may be collectible, White’s ubiquitous crosshair design would become one of the most iconic album covers of all time and arguably the ultimate Guns N’ Roses icon.

Below you can see Slash’s tribute post. Our condolences to the Wyatt family and the Guns N’ Roses camp at this time.

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