Pearl Jam’s Stone Gossard recalled signing Josh Homme’s Queens of the Stone Age in the late ’90s, and explained the major influence Duff McKagan’s early Seattle bands had on the emerging grunge movement.
Stone has been in many iconic bands and has played a huge part in the grunge movement. Fairweather fans may know him just from Pearl Jam, but he has been the guitarist of Green River, Mother Love Bone, and Temple of the Dog as well. Stone Gossard has legacy skin in the game and the chops to back it.
Stone not only was in the industry heavy as an artist, but he got to explore the other side of the music industry when he launched his own record label Loosegrove Records with his friend, occasional bandmate & Brad drummer Regan Hagar.
Speaking to 93XRadio’s Lyndsey Marie in a new interview, Stone notes how he got the label going in order to help up-and-coming bands, but Loosegrove also ended up with a major breakthrough when they signed Queens of the Stone Age in the late ’90s and released their self-titled debut in 1998. The guitarist recalled (transcribed by Ultimate Guitar):
He said: “But the apex of [Loosegroove] was signing Queens of the Stone Age. I was like, ‘Okay! Yes! We know how to sign bands!’ I remember hearing Josh’s demos and just being like, ‘Wow, if we have anything to do with this…’ We were able to get that band launched, and then they went to Universal and that was it. We were like, ‘Okay, we did it, we achieved something great.'”
Loosegroove came to a halt in 2000, but the pandemic saw Gossard and Hagar getting it up and running again in 2020.
Last year, Loosegroove released the album “1982” that Duff McKagan’s teenage punk band The Living recorded back in 1981. Looking back on the GN’R’s bassist influence on the Seattle underground, Stone said: “Duff Mckagan was just instrumental in the Seattle scene… When I was first starting to go to clubs, Duff Mckagan was in 10 Minute Warning, he was in The Fartz, he was in these all these bands that were really influential punk bands in Seattle….They were making an impact.”
He would then state on just how important Duff has been.
He said: “And so, I got to see him in those bands, and then 10 Minute Warning, and then he moved to Los Angeles and started Guns N’ Roses. And you can hear – his influence in Guns N’ Roses is enormous, in terms of the punk side of that band. And some of the toughness is really his thing.”
Stone would then speak on what makes Duff so great.
He closed: “And then to hear this record that he made even before we started seeing [him] that had never come out before, and no one had ever heard it – and it’s a fricking great punk rock record. And it’s all Duff’s lyrics and all of his songs. It was so fun to be able to sing the praises of Duff because he was so influential. And the fact that he made this record long before I was even going into clubs… It would have been the biggest record and Seattle, had it ever come out…. but for whatever reason, it didn’t. They kind of broke up and it was ugly – classic rock explosion.”