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Old 08-12-2004, 06:34 AM   #1
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Scott Breaks His Silence to MTV

Scott speaks to MTV

Scott Stapp

Two months ago, Scott Stapp refused to talk to MTV News. When Mark Tremonti and Scott Phillips announced the breakup of Creed from Tremonti's Orlando, Florida, home, Stapp bagged on telling his side of the story just days before the interview was to take place. He says now that he didn't feel the breakup should have even been revealed.

As Stapp prepares to demonstrate what he can do apart from the guys he's called friends and bandmates for the past decade, with his first solo offering, the single "Relearn Love," and a full album on the horizon, the singer opens up about what really happened on the last Creed tour, the ailments that almost ended his music career, starting over, and why he's not ready to turn off the lights on Creed just yet.

MTV: For your solo album, you've written a few songs with hip-hop/R&B producer 7 Aurelius. That's about as far from Mark Tremonti as it gets.

Scott Stapp: Once you reach a certain point, you kind of want to venture off and work with other people. I think that's totally normal. When a band breaks up ó and I put "breakup" in quotation marks because it's something that didn't even really need to be said; we could have both gone off and done our solo projects without ever [announcing the breakup of Creed] ...

MTV: Is that why you canceled the interview we had scheduled in June?

Stapp: I just didn't agree with making the announcement, and I didn't want to be a part of the mind-set that was behind it. It happened, and it is what it is. People want to find drama and figure out what happened, so you feel like you have to give people an explanation. My explanation is that it's just natural to want to go and [work on solo material] at a certain point.

MTV: Mark and Scott Phillips said your differences were personal as well as musical. No one could get along with you.

Stapp: That's not true. There wasn't a fight. There was just no communication [between us]. I had all these health problems, and I isolated myself, and to be honest with you, I didn't feel like anyone cared about anything but making money and touring.

I have a son and my goals have changed. I didn't want to tour 280 days a year. I wanted to spend more time with my son. I'm divorced and his mother's not involved in his life, so that's what's important to me.

MTV: You had health problems beyond the injuries you sustained in the car accident in 2002?

Stapp: I was basically on [anti-inflammatory] Prednisone for the last six months of the Weathered tour, and it bloated me up like a beached whale. I looked like fat Elvis. I had a nodule on my vocal cord, too.

MTV: What is Prednisone?

Stapp: It's like a steroid. It reduces all inflammation in the body. Without those shots I couldn't sing. And without putting the blame on anyone, I was put under a lot of pressure, regardless of my health issues. I didn't want to let anybody down. I'm a team player, and I was taking one for the team.

I found out later that you're not supposed to take it for that long. Afterwards [one doctor] said I risked damaging my voice forever and ending my music career. Quote unquote "rock doctors" do what they need to do if they're making money off you. It also made me very depressed and made me feel isolated to the point where all I did was sit in the bus and go onstage.

MTV: Didn't you think your bandmates would've understood your situation?

Stapp: I'll take the blame for not bringing those guys in, and saying, "Hey, look at my X-rays." I didn't do that. I should have, but at the end of the day, that's not why the band broke up.

MTV: Besides musical differences and health issues, what else led to the split?

Stapp: As Mark and I were moving in different ways creatively and exploring other options, certain people surrounding the band, but not in the band, took that situation and put a negative spin on it and used it for their own benefit. It's crazy what certain individuals will do. They want to get so close to someone in the band that they will drive a wedge between them and someone else in the band in order to be closer friends with them.

MTV: Who are you talking about?

Stapp: Just many people. I don't want to really point any fingers. I can take the blame and say I didn't do enough to fix it.

MTV: Did all this come about on the last leg of the Weathered tour?

Stapp: Mark and I started moving in different directions artistically after [2000's] Human Clay tour. When you're young guys and you don't know how to deal with what you're feeling inside, it's easy to focus on other things that are pulling you apart. I bet that every friend in the world, if they wanted to focus on the negative, they could.

MTV: Mark said that the Chicago show in 2002, the one that resulted in concertgoers suing the band for a bad performance, was the last straw in your relationship.

Stapp: I've heard the rumors that I was whacked out on drugs, and I can tell you what I was whacked out on ... Prednisone. I was exhausted, but I sang every song. I performed as hard as I could. Basically, the people who sued just wanted the press and attention and money. Everybody didn't sue; it wasn't a class-action suit. I think what got Mark upset was that it was his hometown and two people in the newspapers were bashing his band.

MTV: It wasn't just Chicago papers that covered the story. It made headlines everywhere.

Stapp: We were the most successful band in the world for the last eight years. There wasn't even any contest. I don't mean to sound arrogant ó I'm not an arrogant person, and I never thought we were better than anyone. I think I was perceived that way because of our lack of experience. I came across as this pious, holier-than-thou person.

MTV: How do you mean?

Stapp: Sometimes when you're nervous, you're quiet. Five years ago, I never would have been speaking to you like I am now. I'd be too afraid of saying the wrong thing. And I'd be so afraid of you writing something bad. We were so worried about certain things that we clenched up and got nervous. We didn't show our personalities, who we really were. That's just lack of experience and the fact that we were just four nervous guys.

MTV: Now that you said that, was it media inexperience that caused bassist Brian Marshall to lash out against Pearl Jam after he heard what had to have been the umpteenth comparison between the two bands?

Stapp: Actually, that Pearl Jam thing had absolutely nothing to do with why Brian left the band. Brian left the band because if he didn't, I don't know if Brian would be here right now on this earth. I can't elaborate, but it was for his best interest at the time that he took a break. We always loved Brian and that was the hardest thing we ever had to do. We did that because we cared for him. I'm glad that he's all right now and everything's going good for him now.

MTV: Then what's an example of the inexperience the band had with the media?

Stapp: The whole Christian [rock] thing. That was thrown on us, and we didn't even talk about it. And that kind of affected how the media looked at me. Like, "That guy thinks he's better than everyone."

Also, I don't think some people got my sense of humor. Like that whole Fred Durst thing, that was a joke. When I sent him that anger-management book [after Durst dissed Stapp onstage for not talking to any other bands at a New York radio festival in 2000], I put a note in there that said, "Just to let you know God loves you." It was supposed to be a joke. Because I didn't understand why he did what he did, I was trying to be a smart ass. People took it like I was being serious.

I didn't come out of my dressing room because I was sitting backstage next to a humidifier. I had to gear my whole day around getting onstage. I couldn't talk all day. I was made to feel like the only thing that mattered was doing the show.

Do you know how many times I wanted to let the press and public know about my health issues and I was adamantly told not to?

MTV: You had health issues even back then?

Stapp: Ever since I was a baby, I would catch everything. I was a sickly kid. I have bad allergies. When you have to travel so much and you're a singer with allergy problems, that stinks. I was put on isolation and voice restriction a lot. After really focusing on what I need to do to stay healthy these last couple years, hopefully I have that under control now.

MTV: Why didn't you just ask for some time off to get healthy? I think your fans would have understood.

Stapp: I was advised not to. I don't want to say by who, but it's whoever advises you as an artist. Here was the logic: Do you think the public would demand that I perform knowing that I have pneumonia, two tumors and a nodule on my vocal cords? Why would someone not want me to tell the public? Only if they were benefiting from me staying on the tour.

Continued in the second post...
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Old 08-12-2004, 06:35 AM   #2
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MTV: So it was the people who were making money by you staying on tour who wouldn't let you take time off?

Stapp: I didn't say that. I don't want to start any controversy. It's all been smoothed out. I take full responsibility for these issues. I'm a grown man. I could have said, "I appreciate your advice, but I'm not doing this," but I didn't. I chose to think that the world was on my shoulders.

A lot of that has to do with the negative comments people were making. In my head, I thought that if I canceled, people are going to say bad stuff about me. I'll be frank with you, man. This isn't a sob story, this is the truth.

MTV: That sounds like vicious cycle. You can't cancel shows because you're afraid people might think you're a diva, so you do what you have to do to perform, and they still criticize you.

Stapp: That's exactly what happened. I'll be honest, reading all that stuff really hurt my feelings. I just thought, man, I'm just in a band, doing what I love, and I'm always nice to everyone I meet. I'm a real sensitive man, and I get my feelings hurt. I thought the whole world hated me, and I was depressed.

It's weird. You can hear 10,000 positive things about you, but you focus on the one bad thing. For a while, I felt like I was on a mission to prove that I wasn't an a--hole and I wasn't a jerk and I wasn't an egomaniac.


MTV: How did you get over feeling that way?
Stapp: I've had a long time to reflect and deal with a lot of these things that hurt me. I was scared of people. I was scared of relationships. I didn't even know if I had the heart to love again or even to be happy. Eventually all the pain and hurt turned into anger and defensiveness and callousness, and that's not who I am. Basically, my prayer was to heal this heart. Heal this guy.

And that's really where "Relearn Love" came from. I can't let all this negativity change who I am. I've got to be a man for my son. I can't be this broken-down, feeling-sorry-for-myself kind of guy for my boy.

MTV: Because of the misconception that Creed were a Christian rock band, are you worried that having your first solo material appear on an album of songs inspired by "The Passion of the Christ" is going to continue that misunderstanding?

Stapp: It's ironic, because I started off in a Christian home, and then I ran from it when I was 17. Then Creed got the Christian tag, and here I am launching my solo career with a song on The Passion of the Christ album.

Creed was never Christian rock. I wrote a lot about my doubts and fears and my past, and people took what I wrote ó if they had Christian ears ó and heard it as Christian rock songs. I was just using music to deal with things that were going on in my life. I was questioning and confronting my past.

When people started calling us a Christian rock band, we didn't know why. Initially, Mark, Scott and Brian were kind of upset with me because I think they thought I had some kind of agenda. They weren't raised in that environment. They just wanted to be in a rock band.

MTV: Do you fear that "Relearn Love" will be taken as proof that Creed, and you personally, were Christian rock?

Stapp: No, because I'm not evangelical. I'm not doing this to try to preach this to people or to try to make people believe in what I believe in. I'm not handing out Bibles at my shows, and just like with Creed, not all of my [solo] songs are going to be about my spiritual life. It's a part of my life.

MTV: What if the negative criticism comes up again? Are you better prepared now?

Stapp: I'll just address it and be honest about it. If the Christian thing comes up again, maybe I'll put on a Superman suit with "God" in the front and be God-Man. Maybe I'll make a satire out of it. What can you do except deal with it?

At the end of the day, the people who know you, whom you love, are the only ones I'm accountable to.
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Old 08-12-2004, 07:27 AM   #3
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good morning shadow and everyone
im very proud of scott for having waited for the right time to speak his peace about what happened.
I new he had problems with his voice but not the other health problems too.
im so glad that he is feeling much better with his health and within his heart.
scott is a fabulous father and im glad he is there for his son and with this time he get's to spend even more time with his son Jagger.
i think it's great he has a terrific sense of humor and maybe that's what the whole world needs a sense of humor at least the people who don't have one maybe it would make people more happier if they had a sense of humor.
im proud of you scott
everyone have a terrific thursday everyone im out the door shortley just to make sure all is picked up in the yard and make sure rocky's cage is secured
cause hurricane charley is headed in my direction.
to everyone hope charley changes course.
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Old 08-12-2004, 07:43 AM   #4
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Good morning mushroomy - stay safe from Charley.

Scott, I'm sure, will be getting alot of criticism just like he always does. I can just hear the anti-Stapp fans now. It's a shame because it just feels like there will always be a division between Mark's fans and Scott's fans.

Scott has poured out his heart the past few weeks. Everything is so much clearer now as to what really went on, especially during the Weathered tour.

I hope Scott has found the peace he's looking for and I hope he is happy.

There is a saying that 'everything comes full circle'. I still believe years down the road that Scott and Mark will reunite. Eventually, something will bring them back together.
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Old 08-12-2004, 08:33 AM   #5
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As I've always said, Jeff Hanson sucks big time. I understand they were friends, but he's a horrible manager...

So from the interview I understand the band never knew about Stapp problems... is that right?

Hmm... I really dunno what you think... but I'm glad it's all coming out...
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Old 08-12-2004, 09:03 AM   #6
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Man, I must say that is very good hear Scott talk about it and make things clear. I'm very happy reading this interview. Scott sound's real better now. It's our old and good Stapp striking back again!!! I just can't wait for his solo album. Now more than ever!!!!
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Old 08-12-2004, 09:50 AM   #7
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Thanks for posting that Robyn, great info!
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Old 08-12-2004, 09:56 AM   #8
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ummm something is shifty around here because what the AB boys have stated and what scott has stated doesn't match very well. but a tumour and he still went on and JHMP knew?

evidence of how things don't add up;

"Scott and I hadn't been close for a while," Tremonti said, "and things just weren't working out. ... None of us really argued amongst each other. It was always Scott who had the problem."

"It was personal," he says. Singer "Scott [Stapp] separated himself from us. At one time, we were his closest friends. But put people in a bus for years and little things about us just rubbed him the wrong way."

MTV: Mark and Scott Phillips said your differences were personal as well as musical. No one could get along with you.

Stapp: That's not true. There wasn't a fight. There was just no communication [between us]. I had all these health problems, and I isolated myself, and to be honest with you, I didn't feel like anyone cared about anything but making money and touring.


"The arguments between Scott and Brian would escalate, and there was nothing I could do to defend him after a while," Tremonti says.

(its also being stated that brian and scott didn't get on and it was either one of those that would have to leave)

Stapp: Actually, that Pearl Jam thing had absolutely nothing to do with why Brian left the band. Brian left the band because if he didn't, I don't know if Brian would be here right now on this earth. I can't elaborate, but it was for his best interest at the time that he took a break. We always loved Brian and that was the hardest thing we ever had to do. We did that because we cared for him. I'm glad that he's all right now and everything's going good for him now.


something is not right.......
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Last edited by handmedown : 08-12-2004 at 10:24 AM.
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Old 08-12-2004, 10:30 AM   #9
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It's great to see Scott has gotten things back under control and he is making music again. While I don't see Scott and Mark getting back together any time soon, there is always hope that they will.
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Old 08-12-2004, 10:32 AM   #10
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I,ll put on a superman suit With God In The Front Of It, HAHAHAHA Great interview Well Done Well Spoken Considering The Jerks At Mtv HAHAHA This That And All
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Old 08-12-2004, 11:58 AM   #11
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Great interview thanks for posting. I am so happy Stapp gave his side of the Creed breakup. Good for him. Know maybe AB and Stapp can finally move on.
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Old 08-12-2004, 12:05 PM   #12
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Quote: (Originally Posted by handmedown) ummm something is shifty around here because what the AB boys have stated and what scott has stated doesn't match very well. but a tumour and he still went on and JHMP knew?

evidence of how things don't add up;

"Scott and I hadn't been close for a while," Tremonti said, "and things just weren't working out. ... None of us really argued amongst each other. It was always Scott who had the problem."

"It was personal," he says. Singer "Scott [Stapp] separated himself from us. At one time, we were his closest friends. But put people in a bus for years and little things about us just rubbed him the wrong way."

MTV: Mark and Scott Phillips said your differences were personal as well as musical. No one could get along with you.

Stapp: That's not true. There wasn't a fight. There was just no communication [between us]. I had all these health problems, and I isolated myself, and to be honest with you, I didn't feel like anyone cared about anything but making money and touring.


"The arguments between Scott and Brian would escalate, and there was nothing I could do to defend him after a while," Tremonti says.

(its also being stated that brian and scott didn't get on and it was either one of those that would have to leave)

Stapp: Actually, that Pearl Jam thing had absolutely nothing to do with why Brian left the band. Brian left the band because if he didn't, I don't know if Brian would be here right now on this earth. I can't elaborate, but it was for his best interest at the time that he took a break. We always loved Brian and that was the hardest thing we ever had to do. We did that because we cared for him. I'm glad that he's all right now and everything's going good for him now.


something is not right.......

I'm not surprise there are difference in the story anytime there is a breakup, fight, divorce there is always going to be differences. Everybody see things differently. All parties in Creed had some blame in this break up. Stapp admitted his fault. I think for both sides it is a blessing that Creed split up it was killing everybody. I question JH Management.

Last edited by musiclover291 : 08-12-2004 at 12:35 PM.
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Old 08-12-2004, 12:21 PM   #13
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Thanks, Shadow, for posting this info. Interesting read for sure.
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Old 08-12-2004, 01:39 PM   #14
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Man, I hope Mark & co read this interview! They have to sit down and discuss this! I looks like Mark never got to know what the problem with Stapp was..... and so on!! You have to discuss this, guys!!
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Old 08-12-2004, 03:18 PM   #15
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Quote: (Originally Posted by Shadow) Good morning mushroomy - stay safe from Charley.

Scott, I'm sure, will be getting alot of criticism just like he always does. I can just hear the anti-Stapp fans now. It's a shame because it just feels like there will always be a division between Mark's fans and Scott's fans.

Scott has poured out his heart the past few weeks. Everything is so much clearer now as to what really went on, especially during the Weathered tour.

I hope Scott has found the peace he's looking for and I hope he is happy.

There is a saying that 'everything comes full circle'. I still believe years down the road that Scott and Mark will reunite. Eventually, something will bring them back together.

Thanks for posting that, Shadow. A great read indeed.

I too am glad Scott's talking again and has come out of what he's been going through. I can't wait to hear his solo album.

I think Mark and Scott will get back together again some day too. Hell, if Van Halen can reunite so can Creed.
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