My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Not Dead and Not For Sale, referred to by the late Weiland as his “Earthling Memoirs”, is Scott Weiland’s take on the events of his life growing up, forming the Stone Temple Pilots, and touring with supergroup Velvet Revolver, as well as the trials of his various relationships and his battle with drugs — something which sadly led to the end of his life in 2015.
It’s a decent memoir as far as memoirs go, and it’s nice to hear Weiland’s take on things, which he disclaimed as not necessarily being the absolute truth, but at least his truth and what he believes.
Scott Weiland has a style of writing that I really enjoyed and never fully appreciated until reading ND&NFS, and it was particularly interesting to have his insights into how the events of his life influenced the creation of classic STP songs.
I am slightly disappointed in the execution of the memoirs, though. He’s glossed over a lot of details to his life, only briefly touching on some things, sometimes omitting months or years of time, perhaps out of trouble admitting to mistakes of his life, of which he admits there are many.
The book itself actually isn’t that long of a read. Whereas you would have to sit down for a long while to read I Am Ozzy or Joe Perry’s Rocks: My Life in and Out of Aerosmith, two musical autobiographies that are very verbose and specific about the good and bad of the person’s life, you can read through Not Dead in a very short amount of time, as it only comes in around 200-someodd pages in length, with a lot of space on the pages dedicated to graphics, “torn” pages, and various little visual breaks, as well as a decent length end section that consists of his sketchbook, with drawings, newspaper clippings, handwritten comments, and so forth.
All of this stuff makes for nice touches to make this a little more unique than the average memoir, though there’s enough detail missing or hinted at but not truly touched on that at the end of the day I had something left to be desired from the reading of Not Dead and Not For Sale.
Still, it’s a very good read for a fan of STP, Velvet Revolver, or of Weiland’s solo albums.