A solo album or the third Velvet Revolver album -- or possibly both -- are on Slash's docket for 2009. The guitarist tells Billboard.com that he's "at the very tail end of the demo phase" for the solo

A solo album or the third Velvet Revolver album -- or possibly both -- are on Slash's docket for 2009. The guitarist tells Billboard.com that he's "at the very tail end of the demo phase" for the solo project, which he hopes to start recording early next year.

He began coming up with material during Velvet Revolver's last tour and says that while it will have references to his work with that band and Guns N' Roses, "there's really no particular direction. I just wanted to take a little bit of a break from all the politics and the democracy that is a band and just sort of do my own thing for a little bit. There will be a lot of stuff I don't have the freedom to do in a band situation."

Slash plans to use different singers for each of the album's songs but isn't divulging who's on the list yet. "They're all sort of well-known singers," he says. "It's sort of like how I go play on a lot of other people's records, so other people will just play on this one."

Slash cautions that the solo album could be interrupted if Velvet Revolver finds a replacement for Scott Weiland in the near future, however. The group has turned down offers to conduct the search via a reality TV show -- "There's such a huge lack of integrity in that process," Slash says -- but is looking at a variety of possibilities, including some established singers whose interest has surprised the band.

"There's been a couple that might have been interesting," Slash says, "but with any of those 'name' people ... it's really hard to make something sound original if you've got somebody people are so familiar with hearing somewhere else. But I must admit the bar has been raised; the quality of the singers we're getting is much better."

Slash has also kept himself busy in the studio; besides a version of Sergei Rachmaninoff's "Vocalise" on "Les Paul and Friends: A Tribute to a Legend," he also plays on Alice Cooper's "Along Came a Spider," Edgar Winter's "Rebel Road" and the upcoming album by Cypress Hill.

In addition, the guitarist will perform at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's American Music Masters tribute to Les Paul on Nov. 15 in Cleveland.

Questions? Comments? Let us know: @billboard

Print