Inside Puddle of Mudd's Wes Scantlin's "Long Road to Recovery"

By Paul Gaita 08/20/19

Scantlin credited a court judge and a supportive team with helping him to get on the right path.

Puddle of Mudd's Wes Scantlin
Photo via YouTube

Wes Scantlin, the lead singer for Puddle of Mudd, took to the airwaves to promote the band's first new album in a decade, and talk about some of the motivation for his hard-fought sobriety.

Blabbermouth reported on an interview with the Des Moines, Iowa radio station KAZR to promote the September 13 upcoming release of Welcome to Galvania, where Scantlin shared that his battle against dependency on alcohol and drugs has been a "long road, but it's well worth it."

Scantlin's dependency issues have made headlines in the media for more than a decade, including arrests in 2012 for cocaine possession and driving under the influence, drunk and disorderly conduct on a flight, leading sheriff's deputies on a high-speed chase while under the influence of alcohol in 2015—one of several arrests during that year—and a 2017 arrest at Los Angeles International Airport for trying to board a plane with a BB gun.

Scantlin's dependency issues have also resulted in several disastrous live performances with Puddle of Mudd, including onstage meltdowns in 2015, an Ohio show where Scantlin's inebriated state forced the band to delete its official Facebook page, and a 2016 Ohio show where he accused a fan of stealing his home before leaving the stage. 

Eventually, the negative press and mounting legal problems forced Scantlin to seek treatment at a rehabilitation facility in 2018. He returned to the public spotlight with 11 months of sobriety under his belt that same year, telling Rock Titan magazine that the experience left him feeling great and the band had returned to touring.

In the KAZR interview, Scantlin said that the revolving door of public intoxication and run-ins with the law had worn him down physically, mentally and spiritually. "It got really, really old," he said. "I didn't really want to even do it anymore." 

Scantlin credited a court judge ("a really, really awesome judge") with helping him to get on the right path. "It's comical, but Judge Corne saves Puddle of Mudd," he joked. He also surrounded himself with the right support team. In an interview with Consequence of Sound (CoS) in July 2019, he said, "They believe in me and I believe in them."

As for the fans, whom he thanked in the CoS interview for "their patience," he said that he hopes that Welcome to Galvania will be the sign that he and Puddle of Mudd are returning to form. "You could see for a while there where people were just like, 'Okay, let's see what you got,' you know?" he said in the KAZR interview.

"I hope the new music inspires my fans to live their lives," he said in a statement. "I'm just trying to crawl under people's skin and help them through their life musically."

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Paul Gaita lives in Los Angeles. He has contributed to the Los Angeles Times, Variety, LA Weekly, and The Los Angeles Beat, among many other publications and websites.