Duff McKagan Explains How The Simpsons’ Duff Beer Led To A Costly Mistake

Guns N’ Roses bassist Duff McKagan claims that The Simpsons named Duff Beer after him.

In an interview with Stereogum, McKagan recalled how the creators of the cartoon contacted the band’s management. Or that’s what he claims happened. He said:

“So I was Duff, the King of Beers. But this is 1988, 1989 and our management, I remember they called me and said some arthouse-like cartoon wants to use your name as the beer, like a college arthouse cartoon. There weren’t any adult cartoons at this point.”

After they contacted the band, the show got popular and made a lot of money. However, that was when McKagan realized he made a mistake:

“I didn’t know about branding or anything like that, but that show took off. And then they started selling merch and stuff. I never went after him, but I’m like, ‘Hey, motherf*ckers,’ you know?”

Is ‘Duff’ Really Named After Him?

The claims have been around for many years since the Duff beer appeared in the show. The Simpsons’ writers have repeatedly denied McKagan’s claim about Duff beer. Creator Matt Groening called it ‘absurd,’ and former showrunner Mike Reiss even addressed it in his book Springfield Confidential. He wrote:

“We needed a name for Homer’s favorite beer, and (writer) Jay Kogen came up with Duff. No, it was not named after Duff McKagan, bassist for Guns N’ Roses; we’d never heard of this guy. Have you?”

Though the writers consistently denied the claims, McKagan still stuck to his claims.