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Stone Temple Pilots go legal in dispute with Weiland

By | Published on Tuesday 28 May 2013

Stone Temple Pilots

Stone Temple Pilots have reportedly gone legal in their dispute with former frontman Scott Weiland, filing a lawsuit that apparently attempts to stop the singer from using the band’s name or even performing their songs, which – if true – seems a bit extreme, since he co-wrote most of them.

As previously reported, Weiland was formally fired from Stone Temple Pilots by his bandmates in February, he seemingly finding out via press reports about his bandmates’ Facebook statement. The new lawsuit claims that the Weiland-fronted version of the band, which regrouped in 2008, imploded because he became impossible to work with, was frequently late for shows in 2012, often performed poorly due to drug consumption, and eventually would only communicate with his bandmates via his lawyers or manager.

The dispute has seemingly gone legal now because the band have released a new track with Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington on vocals. In a post on his website last week, Weiland said he hadn’t known that Bennington would be performing with his former band, adding: “To tell you the truth, it took me by surprise. And it hurt. But the band that played last weekend was not Stone Temple Pilots and it was wrong of them to present themselves as that”.

Insisting again that his bandmates didn’t have the power to ‘fire’ him back in February, Weiland’s statement continued: “First of all they don’t have the legal right to call themselves STP because I’m still a member of the band. 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”.

He went on: “When I tour on my own, it’s never as Stone Temple Pilots. It’s as Scott Weiland. The fans deserve to know what they’re getting. Like any band that’s stood the test of time and made music for more than two decades, STP had a special alchemy – the four of us together were greater than any one of us apart. So if my former bandmates want to tour with a new singer, that’s their prerogative. I don’t give a fuck what they call themselves, but it’s not Stone Temple Pilots. And so I say to you, our fans, I’ll see you out there on the road this summer where I’m touring as ‘Scott Weiland’ with my band The Wildabouts”.

But in their lawsuit, Weiland’s ex-bandmates say that it is the former frontman who is mis-using the STP trademark, though their grievances seem to be more about claims being made by his lawyers than any use of the band’s name by Weiland himself. In particular, they allege that Weiland’s lawyers tried to pressure an LA-based radio station to not play the Bennington-featuring STP track ‘Out Of Time’ on the basis doing so would breach their client’s rights.

The lawsuit concludes: “The band endured much strife and lost significant opportunities because of Weiland. Enough is enough. Without relief from the court, Weiland will continue violating STP’s rights, misappropriating STP assets and interfering with the band’s livelihood”.