The disagreement between Stone Temple Pilots and Scott Weiland over whether Weiland is still the band’s frontman appeared to have been settled last weekend when the grunge-era hitmakers took the stage at KROQ-FM’s Weenie Roast with Chester Bennington of Linkin Park on lead vocals.
Not according to Weiland.
“Like everybody else out there, I read about my band, Stone Temple Pillots, and their recent performance this past weekend with a new singer,” Weiland wrote in a “letter to my fans” posted Friday on his website. “To tell you the truth, it took me by surprise. And it hurt.”
In February the three other members of Stone Temple Pilots -- guitarist Dean DeLeo, bassist Robert DeLeo and drummer Eric Kretz -- issued a tersely worded statement in which the band said it had “officially terminated Scott Weiland.”
The firing followed a period of reported turmoil within the band, which had reunited in 2008 and toured heavily in support of a self-titled 2010 album.
In response Weiland issued his own statement at the time, saying, “Not sure how I can be ‘terminated’ from a band that I founded, fronted and co-wrote many of its biggest hits, but that’s something for the lawyers to figure out.”
Now the singer is insisting that the Bennington-led outfit “was not Stone Temple Pilots and it was wrong of them to present themselves as that.
“First of all they don’t have the legal right to call themselves STP because I’m still a member of the band,” he wrote on his website. “And more importantly, they don’t have the ethical right to call themselves Stone Temple Pilots because it’s misleading and dishonest to the millions of fans that have followed us for so many years.”
On Friday the group filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles accusing Weiland of “misusing the band’s name to further his solo career,” according to the Associated Press, which said the suit seeks to “strip [Weiland] of his ability to use the group’s name or songs.”
Stone Temple Pilots alleges that Weiland was “chronically late” to concerts and has attempted to interfere with promotion of “Out of Time,” the band’s new single with Bennington.
“The lawsuit claims that Weiland’s lawyer called the head of programming at KROQ ... and said if the station played ‘Out of Time’ it would be infringing on Weiland’s rights,” the AP reported.
In his letter to fans, Weiland (who perhaps not coincidentally is to launch a solo tour next week at L.A.'s House of Blues) said his erstwhile bandmates were free to tour with a new singer -- “but it’s not Stone Temple Pilots.”