Scott Weiland: Five Great Onstage Meltdowns Before His
For more images from Sunday's ill-fated show, see our slideshow here.
As most of the continental U.S. knows by now, Stone Temple Pilots lead singer Scott Weiland (above) had some... issues... at the band's Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion show Sunday. Arriving late and opening their set with a lengthy, slurred rant, he admitted to having started drinking again following his brother's death in early 2007.
Weiland did not specifically say if he had been drinking on the way to Texas, but amid rumors that the whole tour has been scratched, STP have since cancelled Tuesday in El Paso, tonight in Lubbock, Saturday in Austin and Monday in Corpus Christi. This morning rollingstone.com picked up the report.
Weiland is hardly the first rock star to take the stage in questionable condition. Shockingly enough, we're told that the use of recreational drugs backstage is very common in the world of rock and roll, sometimes even occurring right before the artist's set. We know, we couldn't believe it, either.
"Oh, for God's sake, Elphaba. So the roof leaks a little, suck it up and finish the set."
Photo illustration by John Seaborn Gray
Here are some great onstage meltdowns by some of our most beloved rock stars. Of course, we can't personally vouch that every single one of them is due to drugs or alcohol. Maybe it was just "exhaustion." But then again, maybe that exhaustion was the result of having been up for several days blasting rails of cocaine and ground-up painkillers. Or just good old-fashioned insomnia.
Sly Stone: Earlier this year, Sly Stone had some problems onstage at Coachella. The notoriously unreliable front man babbles unendingly, gets completely lost mid-song and seems like he might not even know where he is. Stone is one of rock's famous recluses. This video shows that some people should stay reclusive.
KISS: Paul Stanley confronts a fan who won't quit bothering KISS with a laser pointer while they're trying to perform. Threatening "you take it out again, I'll put it up your ass," Stanley even tries to get the crowd to pass the guy up to him for proper execution of justice. The lynch mob fails to materialize, however, possibly because no one wanted to be the first to grab the offender. Even though they immediately segue into "Detroit Rock City," we wouldn't be surprised to find out that this happened in Houston.
Axl Rose: Axl Rose stops Guns 'N' Roses mid-"Sweet Child O' Mine" to lecture and threaten a concertgoer for some kind of offense. Whether real or imagined, the situation didn't seem dire enough to stop the performance, but since when does that matter to the stunted man-boy Rose? Still, we admit his taunt of "If you think you're a bigger asshole than me, you've got something to learn" is pretty hilarious.
Brian Jonestown Massacre: From the film Dig!, which chronicled the careers of rival Portland, Ore., indie-rockers the Dandy Warhols and the Brian Jonestown Massacre, we have this absolute gem of inter-band strife. BJM's Anton Newcombe, long in the habit of abusively correcting his bandmates' onstage mistakes, halts mid-performance to throw a tantrum at one of his bandmates, shouting, "No one's gonna say fuck you to me on my stage with my band! Fuck you, get off my stage, 'cause you don't have a band!"
The guy in the leather jacket with the sideburns doesn't help matters by stumbling around kicking random equipment, and Newcombe soon starts throwing punches, which ignites a full-fledged brawl. Our favorite part is afterward, when the cameraman catches up to Newcombe outside as he grouses "Fuckin' broke my sitar, motherfucker!" We're going to be quoting his reply to where the blood dotting his clothes came from for the foreseeable future.
Elvis Presley: Elvis Presley was not on drugs, as far as he was concerned. No, the pills he took were given to him first by the U.S. Army, then prescribed by his own personal doctor, so that made them legitimate to the King. Here, he angrily blasts a journalist who accused him of being strung out, offering the retort "I ain't ever been 'strung out' in my entire life... 'cept on music."
Sad? Definitely. Elvis' handlers created a shell around him which no objective reality could penetrate. On the other hand, we did get
out of it. Also, don't miss him bumbling his way through the spoken interlude in "Are You Lonesome Tonight?" - just as high, but in a much better mood.
Bonus Video: Patrick Wolf calls out a woman in the audience who's talking so loud over one of Wolf's quieter numbers that the rest of the audience is nearly drowning him out by shushing her. "Are you having a nice cocktail party back there?" he asks. Wolf has been known in the past to unleash his temper onstage, even firing his drummer mid-performance for being too high to play.
However, having seen our share of audiences flapping their gums during an artist's performance, we can't help but side with Wolf on this one, especially since calling her out in front of everyone pretty effectively shuts her up. It's not a meltdown, it's just really satisfying to see.
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