Dave Mustaine Gifted STP Their Success, Takes Responsibility for Scott Weiland’s Death

  • Axl Rosenberg

Now that Scott Weiland has been dead for a week-and-a-half, other celebrities can begin to exploit his passing for their own personal gain, be it in the form of publicity or just looking cool. After all, Weiland isn’t here to call bullshit, so it’s never been easier to pretend you had some sort of meaningful relationship with him!

And, shock of shocks, Dave Mustaine is first in line. The Megadick has given a new interview to Loudwire (below) which is allegedly about Weiland but is really about Dave Mustaine telling everyone how cool he is.

First, Mustaine pays STP a back-handed compliment, basically calling that band a total joke who got big because they were part of a trend:

“It’s really peculiar the way things went down with me and Scott, because I was in Finland doing a ‘rate a record’ thing for a magazine one time and they had given us the ‘Core’ record to review. And I was listening to it and I thought, ‘Either this is a really bad joke or these guys are gonna be massive, because they’ve got a sound that’s very similar to a lot of the great bands that are in the alternative scene right now, but I don’t know if it’s a parody or if it’s the real deal.”

Next, he pulls the hipster “I Knew This Band Before You Did So Pppppfffttt!” card:

“And the more I listened to it, the more I really grew to respect his vocals, and I thought that Robert [DeLeo, bass], his playing was really great too. They were called Mighty Joe Youngat the time. And I talked to our manager and I said, ‘I wanna take these guys out.’ And the manager said, ‘Well, you know, people just aren’t digging on ’em.’ And I was, like, ‘I don’t care. I wanna take ’em out.’ So in 1992, on the ‘Countdown To Extinction’ tour, we took Stone Temple Pilots out.”

Then, he takes credit for making STP the live force they became:

“And they were doing pretty good, and there was something that was just off a little bit. And I said, ‘Hey, do you guys mind if I help you with your setlist?’ And we talked a little bit about rearranging the songs and climaxing and settling down into a groove in the middle. And there was one part… it was really funny… They have an instrumental song, and Scott just stands out there on the stage, and I said, ‘What’s this song?’, knowing full well what it was. And he goes, ‘Well, it’s an instrumental.’ And I said, ‘And? Why are you standing out there?’ I said, ‘Go off to the side of the stage.’ And I told him the song where he does — I think ‘Crackerman,’ with the bullhorn thing — ‘use that as your opener because it’s kind of cheeky and it’s a cool way to kind of start the set.’ And they took off after that. Their setlist was great. The pulse, the timing and everything was perfect.”

And finally, with a complete lack of irony, Mustaine takes responsibility for Weiland’s death:

“The thing that I regret was at the end of the tour, I told him, I said, ‘Look, Scott, you’re gonna be huge. You’re gonna have money, you’re gonna have drugs, you’re gonna have pussy, and it’s gonna be everywhere.’ And I said, ‘If you do anything, stay away from heroin.’ And I probably should have said, ‘Do as much as you can,’ because he did the exact opposite.”

So there ya go. If Dave Mustaine had only known about reverse psychology in the early 90s, Weiland would be alive today!

To Mustaine’s credit, he does manage to say something of value towards the interview’s conclusion:

“The sad thing is that anyone who knows Scott or was around him was aware of what was going on. Just like the guy that was in Milli Vanilli, they took him out of rehab and put him on the road, and he wasn’t even done with the rehabilitation process, and he died.”

I don’t know if rehab alone would have saved Weiland, but the gist of Mustaine’s point is accurate: a lot of people enabled the singer (either by looking the other way, minimalizing the strength of his habit, or outright helping him score), presumably because there was money to be made. Some of these people probably feel guilty today, but a lot of them are what might best be called “professional sociopaths,” which is to say, they have managed to compartmentalize what they do for a living and what their own moral values. These are the people who say “I was just following orders” when someone calls them out on their wretchedness. They tend to thrive in fascist governments and show business, and we can only hope that their friends and peers treat them with the same amount of care as they treat others. Maybe we can send Dave Mustaine around to all of their houses to tell them to stay away from heroin.


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