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April 16th, 2003
Ex-Gunners Still Searching For Singer
"The Project" -- the yet-to-be-officially-christened group of original Guns N' Roses guitarist Slash, bassist Duff McKagan, and drummer Matt Sorum -- is still auditioning singers, according to Slash's official Web site. A pop-up message on the site calls for submissions of demo tapes or MP3 files for consideration. But prospective singers beware: there's some stiff competition said to be up for the job.

Among the names flying about is that of Stone Temple Pilots lead singer Scott Weiland, who has played with the Project several times in recent weeks, according to a source. Unfortunately, published reports have speculated that Weiland is once again battling addiction, and may be headed back into a rehabilitation program.

A spokesperson for Atlantic Records, STP's label and home to Weiland's lone solo album, 1998's "12 Bar Blues," could not comment on the report, saying only, "STP is on hiatus while [founding members] Robert and Dean [DeLeo] pursue production opportunities. I'm not aware of Weiland's specific activities at this time." As previously reported, the DeLeo brothers will produce the follow-up to modern rock act Alien Ant Farm 2001 New Noize/DreamWorks Records breakthrough, "ANThology."

Also said to be competing for the vocal post in "the Project" is former Skid Row frontman Sebastian Bach, who has previously performed with Camp Freddy, an on-and-off pick-up band featuring Slash, McKagan, Sorum, Dave Navarro (Jane's Addiction, Red Hot Chili Peppers), and Donovan Leitch. On his official Web site, the singer says that following his shortened run in the touring production of "Jesus Christ Superstar," he plans to work on a new solo album and hit the road shortly after its completion.

Former Buckcherry frontman Joshua Todd spent time in "the Project" but parted ways with the group earlier this year. Faith No More vocalist Mike Patton was said to be in consideration, but passed on the opportunity in favor of responsibilities to his latest band, Tomahawk. That group will release its sophomore album, "Mit Gas," May 6 on Patton's Ipecac Recordings label, and kick off a six-week U.S. tour April 28 in San Diego.

For his part, Slash has been keeping busy, recently co-hosting a week of ABC's "Jimmy Kimmel Live." One of those nights featured "the Project" performing the Guns N' Roses hit "Paradise City" with Cypress Hill's Sen Dog and B-Real, and another featured a Camp Freddy performance.

In addition, Slash sat in last month with the reformed Yardbirds during a performance at the South By Southwest music festival in Austin, Texas. He was also nominated for a best rock instrumental performance Grammy award for "Love Theme From the Godfather," his contribution to "The Kid Stays in the Picture" soundtrack.

-- Barry A. Jeckell, N.Y.

Source(s): http://www.billboard.com  
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