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Creed's Scott Stapp Says Band's Viral Resurgence Healed Feelings of 'Pain' over Reputation: 'All Positive' (Exclusive)

Scott Stapp opens up to PEOPLE about Creed being a hit with TikTok, the Texas Rangers and SZA

<p>Jeremy Kingwill/Revelry Studios</p> Scott Stapp performing

Jeremy Kingwill/Revelry Studios

Scott Stapp performing

The Creed resurgence is in full swing — and as the band prepares for a reunion 12 years in the making, its unexpected “cool factor” is helping propel them forward.

Frontman Scott Stapp and bandmates Mark Tremonti, Scott Phillips and Brian Marshall are set to reunite for the Summer of ‘99 cruise festival in April, and will keep the party going with a lengthy extended tour in the fall.

Stapp, 50, tells PEOPLE that joining forces with the group once more was as comforting as finding an old baseball glove from childhood — and that so far, it’s been an overwhelmingly positive experience.

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“You put it back on and you’re like, ‘Yep, it fits. Feels right,’” he says. “[We’re] just kind of surfing the tidal wave [of popularity].”

<p>Sebastian Smith</p> Scott Stapp

Sebastian Smith

Scott Stapp

Related: How Creed's Scott Stapp Is Still 'Holding on to Hope' with New Music After a 'Difficult Period' (Exclusive)

Though they’re in the thick of it now, it took time for Creed to rise… well, higher. The band achieved commercial success in the late 1990s and early 2000s on the back of hits like the Grammy-winning chart-topper “With Arms Wide Open” and “Higher,” but often found themselves the butt of the joke in the media, in spite of the fact that they’ve sold more than 53 million records worldwide.

But in recent years, their music has become a favorite on TikTok, with Gen Z fans often using Creed songs in their videos. Clips from their 2001 Thanksgiving Day Cowboys game halftime show frequently go viral, and of-the-moment stars like SZA and Zach Bryan have shouted their love of Creed from the rooftops.

The shifting tide was a welcome change, says Stapp, who released his fourth solo album, Higher Power, on Friday.

“All that positivity was contagious, and it rubbed off on us,” he says. “And I think it kind of repaired some of the pain and frustration and hurt that we experienced, in not understanding why the narrative turned. I think there was a lot of healing in that. And with healing comes good energy.”

Though Creed — who last performed together in 2012 — announced its reunion in July, the group got another added boost of popularity in October thanks to the World Series-winning Texas Rangers, who used Creed as the unofficial soundtrack of their successful playoff run.

Related: Creed Frontman Scott Stapp Celebrates His Sobriety with Empowering New Song 'Survivor'

The band even made it out to a game together, and Stapp says the group used the excitement as an opportunity to bond.

“Just as the Rangers shared that they were using Creed to connect as a team and have a common bond and inspiration, they did that for us as we were trying to start this new relationship process and connect with each other as we’re watching the games, watching them to win, because our song’s on the line,” he says. “We didn’t want it to be the Creed Curse, you know what I mean? We’re on a group chat every inning, and it was a way for us to connect as well.”

Stapp says he finds the resurgence “surprising” in terms of scale, but appreciates that it’s won him some brownie points with his kids, including 17-year-old daughter Milan, who took notice when SZA said she “will be a Creed fan forever” in a November interview with Variety.

“My daughter was like, ‘What? She knows who you are?’” he says. “Zach Bryan, my daughter loves him too… [It’s] kind of hard to wrap your mind around. I think it’ll really hit me when I walk out on stage. That’s when it’ll be real.”

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Read the original article on People.