Velvet Revolver do not, we repeat, do not have a new lead singer. However, turns out all those recent reports that the band was close to naming their guy also were true. "We thought we landed on the singer. We all did," Duff McKagan says. "We played with him and we said, 'OK, we got our guy. He's great.' "
But he tells Rolling Stone, without calling out the singer who came oh so close, the group simply had second thoughts. "Maybe if we would've got there and had gigs booked right then and there it would've been a different story," McKagan says. "But we didn't have gigs booked. We were given too much time and we were able to go, 'Ah, fuck, I don't like that about the guy.' "
In recounting the final days with former lead singer Scott Weiland, McKagan, carefully not placing blame on Weiland, admits the band is a little gun shy right now. "When things got rough last year with Scott there was, not directly from Scott, such bullshit and drama surrounding the band," McKagan says. "I started really getting beat down." Asked if that is affecting the search, he admits, "It certainly is."
While the hunt goes on, McKagan is having a great time fronting his other project, Duff McKagan's Loaded, a group he says, "Became my musical lifeboat," in the days following the last Velvet Revolver tour.
Excited about the band's second album, Sick, McKagan is taking the group on the road. And while they're hitting some U.S. markets now, he promises they will be back this summer. So who would he like to tour with? "I'd love to go out with Alice in Chains 'cause they're my friends. We'd bring motorcycles out like we did last time, and those guys' sense of humor is a lot like the sense of humor in Loaded. It'd be pretty fucking funny. I love watching them," he says. "You [want] to tour with somebody you like. It'd be great to tour with Prince cause I'd love to watch him play every night. The guys in Green Day are really good guys. Played a couple dates with the Stones, Guns opened back in '88, and that was fucking killer."
Embracing the role of relative unknowns though, McKagain is just looking forward to the challenge of getting out there and winning people over. "Loaded is a good match for anybody really cause we're not so pigeonholed yet, so people would just be pleasantly surprised. We're not anything. We're just sort of whatever we are that night."