Waking up to the music of the Stone Temple Pilots when your alarm is set to the local news station is never a good thing and sadly this mornings 1010 WINS broadcast was doing this to inform the masses that former lead singer of the band, Scott Weiland had been found dead on his tour bus last night. No cause of death was disclosed and I am not going to be one of those speculators to his sad passing but let’s face it the singer was continually struggling with demons and they just might have won out in this case. He was 48 years old. What a shame.
I’ve been a fan of Scott’s material for decades now and actually owe my first listening of them to my late cousin Neil who was ahead of the curve with this particular band. We were tooling around New Jersey in the car and he asked if I had ever heard this Stone Temple Pilots act yet and I admitted that I had not. This was impressive because around this time I was always the one who was championing the new artists and raising the awareness of my own circle of friends to save them from the radio drivel that they were being fed. We put “Core” into the CD player and raised the volume while he raised the speed of the ride and it was monstrous in sound and vibe. I was hooked and he even insisted I take the CD home since I had given him so many discs over the years. I still have it. The things that come back to you when news like this hits.
Despite my interest in the band and the man fronting the whole experience I never got to see him over those three decades for one reason or another until he did a solo show at Highline Ballroom back in 2012. That’s where these Photos by Peter Parrella come from actually. To be honest I had lost my interest in STP after the third album and when Velvet Revolver came about I only really liked two songs. I was leaning much heavier since the time of my first go round at the bands sound but since I worked with cover bands and jam sessions I knew a healthy part of the hits catalog. If you are a musician and reading this reflection I am sure you are recalling how you also know a handful of their tunes for your own projects. It was commonplace to go to a bar and not only hear STP or VR on the jukebox but often on the stage from bar band after bar band.
Weiland had a new band called The Wildabouts and they just played NYC only a few weeks ago. I was unable to attend this gig and was pretty bummed about that but had assumed a return would surely happen since this is a major market. I never would have fathomed that this would be his last NYC show ever. Since I haven’t seen any reports from outlets that went I don’t know much about his overall presentation or how he was during that show. Was he on point or was he struggling to get through the set. Just looking at possible signs that something could have been wrong. Scott’s struggle with addiction has been well-documented and while they are not saying this was the cause of his passing it just sucks overall. I’m always impressed when those facing this kind of stuff are able to clean up and live better and healthier but Scott always seemed to have trouble doing so and this takes a toll on your body whether you clean up or don’t. His flamboyant and enigmatic stage presence was something to behold and when you watched him in concert or on video you knew you were watching a Rock Star in action. There is not much more I can speak on it. On behalf of the PiercingMetal outlet, I wish heartfelt condolences to Scott’s family, real world friends, band mates old and new along with his worldwide legions of fans. There were few others like him and he shall be missed. Readers are most welcome to offer up what they felt mattered most to them about Scott and his music in our comments section so please do share. Goodnight Scott.