Friday, December 4, 2015

Remembering singer Scott Weiland

Posted By on Fri, Dec 4, 2015 at 10:51 AM

Aug. 1, 1993. Suntan Lake, New Jersey. That was the first time I saw Stone Temple Pilots live. I was home from college for the summer and a bill featuring STP, The Flaming Lips and Butthole Surfers was just too good to pass up. STP was the meat in this concert sandwich and though a light rain might have been part of it, a good number of people left after STP's set, before the Surfers hit the stage. I can still remember that show all these years later, partially because of Weiland, his megaphone and ability to capture a crowd's attention.

click to enlarge Scott Weiland at Carolina Rebellion in 2015. - JEFF HAHNE
  • Jeff Hahne
  • Scott Weiland at Carolina Rebellion in 2015.

I saw the band's frontman, Scott Weiland, a few times after that in the Charlotte area — most recently with his band the Wildabouts at Carolina Rebellion earlier this year. Weiland also played a solo show at The Fillmore in 2013 and with Stone Temple Pilots at then Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre in 2008. 

Weiland was always a stellar performer, though he was constantly the subject of drug rumors and was never really shy about battling demons of addiction. One can only speculate about the cause of death after Weiland was found dead on his tour bus last night at age 48.

Scott Weiland with Stone Temple Pilots at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre in 2008. - JEFF HAHNE
  • Jeff Hahne
  • Scott Weiland with Stone Temple Pilots at Verizon Wireless Amphitheatre in 2008.

At the Stone Temple Pilots show in 2008, fans were already aware of Weiland's tardiness problem throughout the tour, so it was no surprise when that show didn't start on time, either. I remember standing in the photo pit, waiting for the show to start. A tour manager or stagehand had come out to tape down setlists for the band. Approximately 45 mnutes after the show was scheduled to start, that same crew member walked out and scratched off a few songs with a sharpie, knowing that the band was far behind schedule. Fans worried about his health, as they would for years to come. 
click to enlarge Scott Weiland at The Fillmore in 2013. - JEFF HAHNE
  • Jeff Hahne
  • Scott Weiland at The Fillmore in 2013.

At the Fillmore in 2013, his show was a bit of a roller coaster. He was still finding his path at the time — no longer with Velvet Revolver or STP, but on the verge of forming the Wildabouts. He played a handful of covers on that night and some songs sounded better than others. Fans were still worried about him. 

So, many people weren't exactly shocked, but nonetheless saddened to hear of the passing of Weiland last night. He had been asleep on his tour bus before a show in Minnesota when he was found.

The charismatic frontman will be missed in the music world. His bands were responsible for numerous hits over the years, from "Plush" to "Sour Girl" to "Vaseline," "Slither" and "Interstate Love Song."  

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