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Scott Weiland of Stone Temple Pilots: The Talent We’ve Lost To Substance Abuse

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By Bharat Pandit

December brought us the tragic news of Scott Weiland’s (the last one year has been a particularly depressing year for music) death due to an overdose of a lethal combination of cocaine, MDA (old ecstasy) and good ole’ daroo (not entirely unexpected, given his habits), apart from Xanax, Viagra and weed.

Weiland was the frontman for the post-grunge band Stone Temple Pilots (their song Plush went on to win a Grammy in 1993) and then The Velvet Revolver. Smashing Pumpkins frontman named him as one of the 3 great voices of their generation. No one is contesting that Weiland wasn’t a talented singer, his voice being magical in the glory days, but the leitmotif of the music industry, namely overdoing the chemicals is back in the news.

No one is contesting that Weiland wasn’t a talented singer, his voice being magical in the glory days, but the leitmotif of the music industry, namely overdoing the chemicals is back in the news.

BEFORE

young1
AFTER

meltdown

Many a musician has squandered his life and talent pursuing drugs and then being hooked onto them to such an extent that their functional existence is contingent on drugs. Look at what Weiland offered when he looked sober (Plush, MTV Unplugged 1992; The Doors feat Scott Weiland where he sounds just like The Lizard King; Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas).

This same substance abuse led to Led Zeppelin drummer John Bonham’s death, who was a serial alcoholic and asphyxiated in his own vomit. These losses are of humanity as a whole, imagine how much more magic we might have had if Amy Winehouse didn’t kill herself or if Jim Morrison didn’t ‘accidentally’ overdosed himself.
Weiland’s death reminds us of the tenuous dividing line that exists between enjoying a high and dependence. Keeping in mind these tragedies, we should all be wary of excessive indulgence in anything, be it drugs or alcohol and take a mental note of the gift of life, having an above average existence.

Trivia to lighten you up: Stone Temple Pilots initially called themselves Shirley Temple’s P*#sy and that the lawyers who defended him of charges filed by STP, alleging that Weiland (after he was booted out) misused their band’s name to further his career sued him for non-payment of bills.

Stone Temple Pilots initially called themselves Shirley Temple’s P*#sy and that the lawyers who defended him of charges filed by STP, alleging that Weiland (after he was booted out) misused their band’s name to further his career sued him for non-payment of bills.

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