Matt Sorum Explains Why He’s Leaving the Hollywood Vampires
Sorum wants to focus on his own projects, including Artbit, a platform that directly receives payment for musicians’ work and distributes it among the artists who made the music, without going through middle men like record labels.
“I'm not going to be doing the Vampires this year because I felt like I needed to get back into my own driver's seat,” Sorum told Loudwire in a new interview. “That was fun. I like hanging out with those guys, and Alice Cooper is a hero of mine. So is Joe Perry, and I've known Johnny Depp since the '80s, so it was great to get back and talk and hang out with him. He's just a really great guy, super cool and intelligent, and good hanging out. That was fun and that's going to be a nice little memory and piece of my life.”
Other pieces of Sorum's life include co-founding Velvet Revolver with Guns N' Roses bandmates Slash and Duff McKagan. Fronted by the late Scott Weiland, the band released its debut album, Contraband, in 2004, followed by Libertad in 2007, before splitting with Weiland. They spent several years searching for a replacement singer but didn’t find what they were looking for. “I got that feeling of closure on certain things, but I don't want to say there's closure on that particular band,” Sorum said. “You never know. I never say never, because that was a great time and we were very successful.”
He noted that Velvet Revolver were "the highlight of my life. ... We were a supergroup, but we had come out of this massive band, the three of us, and to be able to re-create and come back with a new thing and be successful ... you've still got to write the songs and you've still got to make a great record. You've still gotta have the goods and you've got to move with the times. The music has got to translate to the culture and what's happening in the world, and we just hit with that record Contraband.”
Citing their 2004 Grammy win for the Contraband track “Slither” as “one of the biggest highlights,” Sorum said Velvet Revolver "felt different for me, because obviously Guns N' Roses was already a big band when I joined. So for me, Velvet Revolver was icing on the cake. I was a founder of that group. Me and Slash and Duff said we need to do something new with a new sound and a new band, and we did. We went out there, did a couple of records and a couple of big tours, and that was great.”
Sorum said he was glad his colleagues' return to GNR with Axl Rose "finally happened." “They're doing the catalog, and they're out there playing," he said. "That's cool, and everyone's doing their own thing [outside] of the other guys. For me, I'm over here doing this and doing my own music and keeping my thing going. It's great for them, and I'm happy for them.”