Born: William Bruce Rose, Jr.; raised as William Bruce Bailey
When Rose was 2 years old, his father abandoned his family. His mother eventually remarried to a man named Stephen L. Bailey, and Rose's name was changed to William Bruce Bailey. Rose eventually found out about his biological father and started using his birth last name. At 21, when he followed his rock 'n' roll dreams to Los Angeles, Rose adopted his famous first name from Axl, a band he sang for in the early '80s.