Rose, who has a reputation for being late for concerts, arrived on time Wednesday for Kimmel's chat show where he promoted Guns N' Roses' upcoming 12-night residency at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas.
Praised by Kimmel for his punctuality, Rose admitted, "It's a miracle."
The host told the musician he was honored to have him as a guest on the show, then asked him why he agreed to do so when he has turned down so many other opportunities to be interviewed.
"I was asked to and you wanted me here," Rose replied, adding he made the show even though he had been suffering from strep throat for the past couple of days.
Asked if he was on antibiotics to treat the illness, Rose joked, "I'm on a bunch of different things -- legal, illegal."
Kimmel quipped how it might be cool to tell people he caught strep throat from Axl Rose, prompting the rocker to assure him: "I'm a lot better today. I think you're safe."
Rose then recalled how he hitchhiked to Hollywood when he was 19.
Did he meet any shady characters along the way?, Kimmel wanted to know.
"Unfortunately, yes," Rose said.
"When I wore the codpiece, I got rides a little quicker," he said, referring to a trademark accessory he wore during the 1990s.
So, how long after Guns n' Roses got together did they start to make money?
"I don't know if I'm making money now," Rose told Kimmel. "A few years after we got going."
Kimmel pressed Rose to talk about whether he worked other jobs while he was waiting for his band to take off.
"Now and then," he said, adding he briefly worked at Tower Video on Sunset Boulevard.
"I became a manager for a very short amount of time. I let everybody have beers after work," he said, recalling how he hired his friends to work with him. "We had a great time for a while."
Kimmel then asked if he scolded employees for being late.
"A little," Rose said. "I was more lenient."