News Segment


April 8, 2004

NEW YORK (Billboard) – Embattled vocalist Scott Weiland, who has run into legal problems as he battles a heroin addiction, has been cleared by California authorities to tour with his bandmates in nascent supergroup Velvet Revolver.

The former Stone Temple Pilots frontman has spent the past several months in a court-ordered drug rehabilitation center after pleading no contest last year to heroin possession. But Velvet Revolver guitarist Slash says Weiland will be on board when the band hits the road next month in North America.

“Scott actually just got cleared to tour today,” the guitarist told “We’ve been planning dates this whole time.”

The plan for the band, which has played just one live show to date, is to drop in on “medium-sized places” leading up to the June 8 release of its RCA debut, “Contraband.”

“The first thing we’re going to go out and do is establish ourselves as our own band in our own environment,” said Slash, a former member of Guns N’ Roses. “We’re trying to keep it as personal as possible but at the same time, expose ourselves as much as possible. We want to do this on our own terms, as opposed to going out, jumping on the road and opening for somebody, or playing a festival bill, but that is coming.”

As for what fans can expect from the band in a live setting, Slash promised a host of tracks from “Contraband” in addition to “a little bit more Guns and STP than just one song apiece, and a couple of covers. whatever we can to make a really good, punchy set and express ourselves as openly and as uninhibitedly as possible.”

The 13-track “Contraband” is led by the single “Slither,” which will be sent to radio outlets on Monday, but can already be sampled on Velvet Revolver’s official Web site ( And after hedging its bets on Weiland’s uncertain future, Velvet Revolver is finally primed to take its show on the road at full strength. “Everything is great,” Slash said. “It all seems to be happening for a reason.”

Velvet Revolver is rounded out by Slash’s former Guns N’ Roses colleagues, bassist Duff McKagan and drummer Matt Sorum, and guitarist David Kushner of Suicidal Tendencies.

Jonathan Cohen courtesy of Billboard