The youngest of eight children, Duff McKagan was born in Seattle, Washington in the spring of 1964. His real name is Michael, but his family gave him the nickname Duff at the age of two and it stuck. He grew up rebellious, falling in love with punk and glam rock by the time he was a teenager. His brother Bruce introduced him to the bass, but he did not take to the instrument right away. At the tender age of 16, the Fastbacks hired him on as their drummer, giving him his first shot in the developing Seattle rock scene. He left the band toward the end of 1981 and began playing in countless other punk combos in the area. Most influential was his work with the Fartz, a band that never made it that far but served as one of the primary influences on grunge innovator Mudhoney. While McKagan enjoyed the gigs he was working, he tried his luck in Los Angeles after a few years of playing in the Northwest. Upon moving to town, he met future Guns N' Roses founders Slash and Steven Adler, and decided to form a trio with the others called Road Crew. The band gave them the kind of visibility they craved, but upon meeting Indiana transplants Izzy Stradlin and Axl Rose, the five flirted with the idea of combining their forces, until finally Guns N' Roses became a reality in 1985.