Fans of ’90s alternative group Stone Temple Pilots were thrilled to learn that the group had accepted singer Scott Weiland back into the fold, and there were even performances of the reunited band as recently as last year. However, now it seems that the future of the band may be in question, based upon confusing statements from the band and Weiland himself. Will the band’s remaining fans be willing to bear with these unusual episodes?
Stone Temple Pilots Reunion
The alternative band burst onto the scene in the early ’90s but later parted ways with Weiland over his undependable personality and troubles with drugs and the law. Weiland spent some time recording and touring with Slash as part of the Velvet Revolver group, but after a long period of recovery and two failed marriages, he finally returned to STP in 2008. The group toured through last year with some revived success.
What’s the True Story?
According to USA Today, the band released a statement through their publicist that they had “officially terminated” Scott, and the singer responded that he didn’t understand how he could be fired from a project he was so heavily involved in, and that the group would have to let their lawyers work out the details. Weiland also indicated that he only learned of the firing through the press and was looking forward to a solo tour.
Rolling Stone also echoed the firing story, indicating that Weiland himself previously told them that rumors of his termination were false and had been in fact initiated by Slash, who, according to Weiland, had no first-hand knowledge of Scott’s relationship with STP. Billboard, MTV, and The New York Times all picked up the story, reporting that Weiland had been let go.
However, Weiland later issued a statement that the band had started the rumor of his termination in an effort to boost ticket sales. So how exactly was that supposed to work? Doesn’t he realize that his fans are mostly now in their late 30s or early 40s, and they probably wouldn’t be that excited about buying tickets to a concert where the singer may or may not show up? If he thinks that is a good business plan, maybe he should ask the Lemonheads how their tour with a substance-addled Evan Dando went in 2011. Having to refund tickets due to an incapacitated singer is not a great way to rally concert-goers who have to pay for babysitters!
Weiland also stated that the band is contractually unable to fire him, in that his band mates would not have the right to perform under the name Stone Temple Pilots without him. Basically it seems that the band would have to re-name themselves, just as the former Guns ‘n’ Roses members involved in Velvet Revolver did when they wanted to tour without diva singer Axl Rose. Finally, he reported that his substance abuse issues are behind him.
Any Press is Good Press?
It’s unclear whether the remaining members of the band are planning a tour without Weiland, but he always was the main visual and public presence of the group. Interest in the band in this millennium is certainly not at a premium, and all of this shady drama had only served to confuse everyone about STP’s status. If indeed the men are all lying or telling partial truths to various media outlets, how would their fans have any ability to trust them in the future? Then again, this is probably the most attention Weiland and his friends have received in quite a few years, so perhaps they are operating under the desperate credo that any press is good press.