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WEILAND (SECRETLY) OFFERS TIPS TO DOWNEY JR.

Was It Coincidence That "Clean Living" Tips Appeared The Day After Actor Was Released?
Today (8/4), Wallofsound.com offered up a helpful article on "tips for clean living," using frequently incarcerated Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland as its resident expert, which makes perfect sense. To paraphrase Steve Martin's character in "Leap Of Faith": "If ya wanna learn about sin, it's best to go to a sinner."

Weiland told the site he had been clean and sober since last being released from jail on Dec. 30, 1999, and that he's having the best time he's ever had onstage. And his words couldn't have come at a better time, as actor Robert Downey Jr. was just released from California State Prison in Corcoran.

And while the Wallofsound.com article never mentioned Downey Jr., it was very obvious that it was Bob that Scott was addressing.

"Performing loaded is sort of a disjointed thing," Weiland said to Downey, through reporter Gary Graff. "Opiates are anesthetics… So, it's hard to connect with the music and what's going on onstage. I have a much easier time now becoming intoxicated by the energy that's happening from the audience and the energy that's being created from the four members of the band."

Of course, this quote points out the basic problem facing Downey Jr. as he tries to make a clean (and sober) slate of it in the free world. As an actor, Downey Jr. doesn't really have an audience to get "hooked" on, nor a band to support him, as Weiland says his fellow STPers are doing.

"Really what I do is what's in front of me on a daily basis," Weiland said, obviously alluding to the day-by-day life of the incarcerated man, which both Weiland and Downey Jr. have been. His following comments can easily be decoded in terms of Downey Jr.'s life in film:

"People that tend to be addicts don't really appreciate the moment for the moment; they tend to either become obsessed with bad choices made in the past." (Accepting roles in "1969" and "Air America.")

"Or are constantly looking toward the future for something that will validate you as an individual." (A role in any movie, even roles Charlie Sheen turned down.)

"Once you surrender to the idea that, no matter what, trying to control an addiction in anyway whatsoever always results in the same outcome. It's always negative." (The disappointing critical reception toward "In Dreams.")

It's so obvious that Weiland cares about Downey Jr., and, thankfully, there was some indication that his message was received loud and clear. Upon the actor's release, his attorney stated that Downey was "doing as well as one can be," but he added: "I'm sure he's doing a lot better as of today." (Italics added for emphasis.)

Did Weiland's words really have a soothing effect on the troubled actor? Was Downey Jr. consoled by the sage advice of his brother in addiction? Could an interview offered on the Wallofsound.com Web site really have such a wide-sweeping positive effect on another famous person's life?

For the sake of both the film and rock industries, we can only hope the answer to all those questions is yes.

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