by Jeff Niesel
Out on a solo tour that started earlier this month and comes to House of Blues on Wednesday, Stone Temple Pilots’ frontman Scott Weiland says playing Northeast Ohio still means something special to him. Though born in California, he spent his youth in Bainbridge Township.
”From the age of four until right before my freshman year of high school, I lived in Ohio,” he says. “My fiancé lived an hour from me and my bass player is right from the same region. And the [tour manager] being forced to drive the RV right now, too.”
For the current tour, Weiland has been playing a number of deep tracks from STP’s first two albums, 1992’s Core and 1994's Purple. That, in turn, provoked the guys from Stone Temple Pilots to issue a terse statement saying that Weiland was “terminated.” Weiland maintains he’s still a member of the band and can’t legally be removed against his will. “I think it was a reaction to the fact that this tour had sold out within a week,” he says with regard to the band’s statement. “It was probably not the smartest thing for them to do since I founded the band and there are certain legal terms within the contract which don’t make sense as to that decision, or that threat.”
He admits, however, that the last few tours with STP haven’t been particularly inspiring.
“My philosophy is that I don’t feel like going on the road and playing a greatest hits set that we’ve been playing for five years,” he says. “We’ve been doing that and in the midst of doing that, we made an album that took us a year-and-a-half. That’s not the way STP makes records. We make records in two weeks. If we’re going to do something, we need to get back in the studio with Brendan O’Brien who has a track record with us and get re-inspired artistically again. We need to do it that way and get out there on the road and get out there with some excitement and not just turn our legacy into what Journey or Foreigner is. That’s not what we’re about. That’s not why we got into this. That’s not at all what I’m about.”
Instead, he thinks that Soundgarden’s approach to touring is more appropriate. The band has continued to record new songs and dig deep into its catalogue since reforming three years ago.
“Yeah. I think that’s very cool,” he says. “More than anything, we’ve been a great live band. The reason why critics didn’t like us because they thought we were one thing that we weren’t. They thought we sounded like a Seattle band. We proved those critics wrong over our career and changed from album to album. We didn’t sound like the Beatles, but we took that blueprint and the idea of being a band. Sure, there are some bands that have one sound and do it really well. But we looked at the idea of the Beatles and thought to really do it right, we had to evolve. We had to go into a cocoon every once in a while and come out as a butterfly and not an ugly moth.”