“If you should die before me, ask if you can bring a friend. Pick a flower, hold your breath, and drift away.” -Scott Weiland

1Scott Weiland died yesterday. He was 48.

He was also the lead singer of Stone Temple Pilots, my favorite band. I was getting ready to go to bed last night when I stumbled upon the initial reports. When I was pretty certain the news was true, I crept out of the bedroom. “What’s wrong?” Lynnette said as soon as she looked at me. “Scott Weiland died,” I said. “Ohhh,” she said. There were a few moments of silence. “I saaaad,” I said. “I know,” Lynnette said.

I’ve written about my history with the band. I have spent countless hours thinking about the band’s songs. After I told Lynnette about Weiland’s death, I went back into the bedroom and cried for 5 minutes. Sadly, selfishly, the tears weren’t for him. They were for me. I have never seen Stone Temple Pilots live and now I never will. I knew the odds were long, but I always held out hope. That they’d get together again. That they’d make their way to Oahu. My dream concert will have to remain just that.

Instead of go on this way and get even more emotional about a man I never met, I’m going to link to a few timely Stone Temple Pilots songs. This is me, grieving.

Best song to sing/scream driving back up H2 late at night/early in the morning when you’re tired: “Down”, No. 4.

Straightforward riff, simple lyrics, not a test of vocal range. You gotta go with easy on that long ride home. Honorable Mention: “Dumb Love”, Shangri-La Dee Da; “Wicked Garden”, Core.

Favorite deep cut: “Still Remains”, Purple. (4-minute mark)

Deep cut, yes, but it might be my favorite overall. Honorable Mention: “First Kiss on Mars”, Stone Temple Pilots; “Adhesive”, Tiny Music… Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop; “Silvergun Superman”, Purple.

Best song to play when you want all the males in their 30’s and 40’s in the immediate vicinity to immediately stop what they’re doing and sing together: “Plush”, Core.

Just try it. Honorable Mention:

Song to listen to if you’re thinking of your girl and it’s good times:
“Wonderful”, Shangri-La Dee Da.

I heard this song for the first time during the summer between my junior and senior years of college when I was part of two separate love triangles. Yeah, I’m a horrible person, but this song is still great. Honorable Mention: “First Kiss on Mars”, Stone Temple Pilots; “Cinnamon”, Stone Temple Pilots.

Song to listen to if you’re thinking of your girl and it’s bad times: “Interstate Love Song”, Purple.

You knew it was a break-up song, right? Honorable Mention: “Sour Girl”, No. 4; “Black Again”, Shangri-La Dee Da; “Big Empty”, Purple.

Song I can admit I don’t like even though STP is my favorite band because I’m not that kind of everything-they-do-is-magic guy: “Creep”, Core.

I never liked it and the fact that it is inferior in every way to Radiohead’s “Creep” doesn’t help. At all. Honorable Mention: “Heaven and Hot Rods”, No. 4; “Pop’s Love Suicide”, Tiny Music… Songs from the Vatican Gift Shop.

Best Unplugged song: “Big Empty”, Purple.

This morning my co-worker Tara walked me down to the football field and played this song as we poured some water out of our Hydroflasks for Scott. She made me say a few words: “Scott, I always hoped I’d see all of you together. I guess that’s not going to happen now. I used to hate it when people would call you guys Pearl Jam rip-offs. I can still listen to Purple front-to-back. It still stands as one of the best albums of the ’90s. Thanks, Scott. You were my favorite. You were the best.” That really happened. Tara is the best.

As much as I’ve written about Stone Temple Pilots, I don’t think I’ve ever tried to list my favorite songs in a definitive order. Now’s the time, I suppose.

4. “Interstate Love Song”, Purple.

3. “Lady Picture Show”, Tiny Music… Songs From the Vatican Gift Shop.

2. “Trippin’ on a Hole in a Paper Heart”, Tiny Music… Songs From the Vatican Gift Shop.

1. “Still Remains”, Purple.

But still…

Rest in peace, Scott.


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