Slash seems to be the source of some of the rumors about you. He said STP fired you, and he said he doesn't want you back in Velvet Revolver.
Slash said STP fired me?
Oh, no no no. Slash doesn't know anything about STP. Those guys wanted to get together to talk about touring, but I don't think touring right now is the best thing. STP has a legacy, and to protect that is very, very important to me. But to go and do the kind of offers that we were getting would be diminishing the brand, and I don't want to do that. There are offers right now. There are offers that I passed up on. There's offers that those guys didn't want as well. There were some hurt egos, but that's the way it is. Things are like a family. No one's ever fired anybody in STP.
It's the same thing with Velvet Revolver. The whole thing that happened in VR is that I was called by [Stone Temple Pilots guitarist] Dean [DeLeo] while I was on tour with VR. He said, "There are a few festival offers. Would you like to do something?" So I approached the guys in VR. They said, "Yeah, just a few shows? No problem." Then we went on tour in Europe. We were there for a long time, and everyone in the band went through some difficult times in their own way.
Nobody is perfect, but I do regret some of the things that I said, as I'm sure some of the other people do. Matt [Sorum] and I did get into an argument at the last show we played. I do remember saying something from the stage like, "This is the last Velvet Revolver show that I will ever do," and that I was quitting. I regret saying that. It was something that I said in the heat of the moment. I did not . . . it embarrassed them. I shouldn't have done that. It was an immature move. If I could take it back, I would. I still feel like something will happen. If it doesn't, there's other things to do.
As far as STP is concerned, it's a partnership. It's always been that way. It's not a situation where . . . I started the band. I'm not tooting my own horn in any way. It's a thing that was started by my old guitar player and Robert [DeLeo], and we've always kept things going. We've gone and taken time off before. They've done their own band. If they do another project, obviously not under the name STP, just like I'm doing my own solo thing right now, that would be great. I've always supported them. But no one's been fired, and I haven't quit. So that's all hearsay.
Slash also said the "door was closed" as far as you returning to Velvet Revolver. He was pretty emphatic about it.
Well, the thing in interviews is . . . and it's the same with every interview I've ever given, is that words somehow get changed and edited. Then when you're doing a radio interview, someone asks a question, you answer it, and then they sort of push you into a direction, into a corner, to say something that doesn't really come out of it. You end up becoming defensive just to shut up that question.
I remember when Slash started doing his solo thing. He said, "I don't want to talk about Velvet Revolver." Just like I said before this interview. I said, "I don't want to talk about VR or STP." They said, "Well, we're going to." My manager said, "Well, shit, do you want to do the interview or not?" I said, "Well, sure, I'll still do the interview. I'm a nice guy. I'll do it." But you can't control what happens in the press. I'd say something more along the lines of, "You know, we'll see."
What's the status of your next album?
We're halfway finished with it right now. When we get back we'll finish off some more tracks and figure out a track . . . There's so many ways of putting out records now. The major label route is sort of old school. Not to say it can't work, but just expecting radio to push a record isn't the way things work anymore. It works in country, but rock & roll is different. There's not many rock & roll or alternative stations anymore, and the ones that exist don't have the same influence they had before. Fans of rock & roll in general, they hear about bands and the listen to videos of them on their laptop.
I understand what you were saying about STP earlier. Oftentimes bands need to go away for a little bit to build up interest. Fans start to appreciate them more when they aren't around all the time.
Yeah, and you start to appreciate why you actually started doing it in the first place. It just ends up having a better, more organic feel.
What's your guess for when STP will return? Two years? Three years?
I have no idea. I would say three years is a long time, but I'm not psychic. I have no way of knowing. I know there's offers for summertime and stuff like that, but I only hear what I'm told by management.
Finally, you have a reputation for being very difficult to work with. I'd imagine you feel it's undeserved, but does that reputation bother you?
Yeah, I think it's kind of unfair. I mean, I've been difficult in the past. I think most of that has to do with with, you know, the 1990s . . . that sort of stuff that came from that decade. But it's difficult. Do I show up onstage late sometimes? That's something I could definitely work on. I'm human. Is there a person that shows up to work perfectly on time every day? I suppose there's a perfect attendance award that's given out to some employees at some place, but . . . it's something that . . . I think that a majority of it has to do with things from the past. People read things on Google and they have these perceptions, these misconceived perceptions of who you are. At times that hurts, because they really don't know who I am.
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