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Thursday, 25 April, 2002, 14:14 GMT 15:14 UK
Your tributes to singer Layne Staley
Layne Staley, singer and guitarist with the American grunge band Alice in Chains, has been found dead at his flat in Seattle.
Alice in Chains were founded in 1987 and ranked with Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden as one of the bands that made Seattle famous in the early 1990s.
The band stopped touring in the mid-1990s when Staley went into rehabilitation for heroin use.
His death comes eight years after Kurt Cobain, leader of Seattle's best-known rock band Nirvana, killed himself.
Local medical officials said that the cause of Staley's death had yet to be determined.
Send us your tributes to Layne Staley.
This Talking Point is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.
Layne was a great inspiration for me, I looked up to that man a lot. Everything he sang, he felt and I felt it also. He was a creative mind, a god amongst others, he helped me out throughout the years. Man in the Box and Got me Wrong, are two of the best songs I've heard and that have touched me in my heart. Layne, you are a wonderful man, with a big heart, I will miss you everyday, for the rest of my life, listening to your music now makes me feel sad, but it also makes me work harder, knowing I have lost someone I loved dearly and hoped I could have met. Thank you Layne, your words have influenced me and helped me a lot on realizing, the meaning of life. Thank You Layne, I'll miss you and love you deeply.
I met Layne when I was 13. He is a friend of my brothers, and will always be in my heart, despite what has gone on with us. Now, at 21, Layne has put a great inspiration on me. Thank you Layne. I will never forget the dream .
It's comforting to read about the effect his music had on so many people. He won't be forgotten. Drugs are what killed him, but they are also a vital part of the music he made and how absolutely heart wrenching his lyrics were. Thank you Layne, your music lives on. I am going to drift away to his beautiful voice now. RIP
Layne is gone, Alice is quiet. But the music lives on and somewhere there is another Layne waiting for his moment to touch us all. We have our season in the sun and then we are gone. Layne is at peace and so too should we.
nav, Boston, USA
After reading all of the tributes before mine, it makes me realize that someone this loved and respected is never truly alone. He may have been alone in his apartment, but a little piece of all of us was there as well... and also died. Thank you, Layne, for all the strength you gave me when I needed it. I am glad your pain is finally over. I will always miss you and never forget you.
I loved Layne, I always will. My first concert was AIC and even with a broken leg, Layne put on the best show I've ever seen. I will miss him forever.
I've been dreading this day for years. RIP Layne, you were the best. I hope you're with your beloved Demri again now. My sympathy to Jerry, Sean and Mike and especially the Staley Family.
Here is a poem I wrote for Layne after hearing the news:
AN ODE TO LAYNE
LAYNE STALEY 1968-2002 R.I.P.
Just prior to hearing of Layne's terrible demise, I was listening to "Nutshell" - the most beautiful and touching song I have ever heard. In this song, Layne sings "If I can't be my own, I'd feel better dead." Sadly, he wasn't his own man; the needle owned him. I've shed many tears over this heartbreaking event. Layne's lyrics and music provided us with a window to his tormented soul, and we have lost the greatest voice and personality this world has ever known. My heart goes out to Layne's family and friends. It is so sad he died alone. Goodbye Layne, and thank you for being who you are.
Being a loyal fan of Alice's music, I was deeply saddened by Layne's death. Layne was a truly gifted musician and a talented writer. Layne was a musician that could give one word an emotion of it's own. His pain was well documented through out the pages of the Alice albums and his words in mad season still touch me today. The music world will never be the same after his passing, but his talent will stay forever
Alice In Chains was one of those bands that had shaped and completed my life through all the tough times. I have loved them and deeply respected them since I was 12 years old. I am now 22, and it is hard to believe that someone so special to me and to millions of others has left us. You will never be forgotten Layne...you were a beautiful angel.
My heart breaks that we have lost yet another talented artist to this illness of drug addiction. I have heard so many people commenting on how he died and I hope we can get over that and remember how he lived... as a talented artist with a illness he just couldn't fight any more. Layne, I hope you have found the peace you looked for here for so long and couldn't find. You will live on forever in our hearts and you will be forever missed. Rest In Peace Layne... we love you.
Michael Knight, U.S.A.
Those damn harmonies between Jerry and Layne will never happen again!! That tandem is amongst the best in rock history. They didn't miss the mark much on their albums. Almost every song stimulates that part of your brain - where you feel emotion, invite it, embrace it. We need bands like Alice in Chains. Rest in peace, Layne.
Layne Staley, the single greatest singer of rock music. The minute I heard the great song Man In a Box I was hooked. The man sang from his heart and reached into many millions of hearts by doing so. Through my own dark periods Layne's words were there to let me know people suffer more than I and there is always a hope. Layne to you I extend my Love thank you for years of enjoyment, therapy and motivation. REST IN PEACE
I will always remember "river of deceit" as the greatest song to come out of the grunge- scene. The lyric "my pain is self chosen, at least I believe it to be", runs deep. You will always be remembered for your lyrics and music, Layne, I hope you have found peace. Rest in peace, my heart is crying for you.
Matt Dotseth, USA
When I first heard the news I was speechless, had to catch my breath, then I cried. I've done my mourning, I've put in every AIC CD and listened to it twice. I know that there are people who will say "it was only a matter of time before it destroyed him" but I think his song he wrote for Andrew Wood now speaks for himself..."So I made a big mistake, try to see it once my way." I love you Layne, and you will surely be missed. My thoughts go out to his family, friends and of course his bandmates Jerry, Mike and Sean. Keep rocking!
Layne touched my heart like no other artist ever has. His lyrics not only helped me through hard times, but saved me from myself at some points. He is finally at peace and is able to rest. "Heaven beside you".
With sadness another great from a generation of
talent has gone. It's better to burn out than fade
Ray C Bannister, USA
Drugs have killed a poet, an inspiration, and a friend. We will miss you Layne. I sink lower without your words to lift me up.
AIC has been my favourite band for the past eight years, and I always hoped Layne had cleaned up and was just avoiding the pressures of the music industry to stay that way. But deep down I was always expecting something like this to happen. Yet the news of his death hit me so much harder than expected. I hope he is happy and at peace now, wherever he is. My condolences to everyone who knew and loved him.
Layne: Although I'm in shock about your death and am truly saddened by this tragedy I will continue to show my dedication towards all that you stood for.
I have never been good at coming up with words and this has left me speechless. Layne was an amazing singer and Layne and Jerry wrote some of the greatest songs I have ever heard. All I can say is I will miss him deeply. RIP Layne
I didn't know him, but I do appreciate their great music, especially the track "What the Hell Have I", and somehow I am still touched by the loss of this man. His voice was amazing. Very sad.
I had expected it to happen soon. But the news came as lightning on bright day.
Mick Fitzsimmons, Scotland
In 1993 when I received the album "Dirt" on my birthday I found my favourite album, my favourite band and my favourite singer. My greatest inspiration. Exactly 9 years later a friend told me on my birthday that Layne Staley was dead. Just at the same moment, the radio played Journey's "Who's crying now". A moment I will never forget.
When I heard the news I was driving. I pulled over and tried to pick up the pieces. Layne, my association with you and your haunting, heart-wrenched vocals was intimate and will continue to be. You gave my Sweetheart and myself something so dear to share at our most intimate times. Stab me in the eye so many times to take this pain away. A thousand hurts. See you on the other side. Thank you for everything Layne.
Having caught on to Alice late, I feel cheated that I won't get to experience any more of Layne's moving vocal performances. He was a very talented man and I hope his name is never forgotten. Rest in peace Layne.
I still can't believe it, such a waste of talent. He gave us some wonderfully poetic lyrics and haunting melodies. I hope he's happier in the next life, for us, the fans, the music will mean so much more. RIP Layne.
PV2 Gene F Parsons, USA
Hardly a more honest and brave musician has been seen by our generation. Layne's music gave us visions of the whole of our humanity, including the darker corners we seldom admit or dare to investigate. He gave us a gift, and gave it nobly....it was his job to test the boundaries of human experience and report back faithfully what he found. Layne did it with skill and with heart. Rest well
We've been hoping against hope that this day would never come, but in our hearts we knew that it would. My thoughts go out to the Staley family, Jerry, Sean, Mike and Mike, all Layne's friends and his legion of fans throughout the world. "I could either drown or pull off my skin and swim to shore"
I think that is the best voice of the Seattle scene gone. I think that the modern rock scene, will cry for his death, at least I'll do it.
R.I.P Layne, you were the best...
Layne was one of the most passionate musicians of our time, his music, lyrics and life reflected that. Like Kurt your went out too soon and will be missed, but you'll live on in my heart forever R.I.P
Layne - I will miss you. As I also miss Curt. You both inspired me so much to play and sing. Your Music was truly one of kind and gave me so much direction. You never wrote a bad song. Again I will miss you. Rest in Peace.
Chris Roman, Romania
Layne Staley was a great vocalist and made some of the best music I have heard in my life. Alice In Chains was one of my favourite bands and their music has always been very close to my heart. May Layne's soul rest in peace and may he find the peace and warmth to gratify his soul wherever he is. He will be missed forever.
It is so sad that such an amazing talent has gone from our world - his beautiful voice and the beautiful lyrics of Alice in Chains songs have often made me melt, and will continue to for the rest of my life. My thoughts go to his friends and family, who must be feeling such desperation at this time. May peace find you all again one day, and I hope Layne has finally found the peace he never seemed to find in life. RIP Layne xx
Alice in Chains remind of an era that was great in rock. He will be sadly missed as one of the great frontmen of rock and a great lyricists
What can I say, another fallen brother to the hype and hysteria. First Jimmi, Stevie, now Layne. My idols, forever etched in time, but forever to be heard. When I heard the news my throat went dry and my heart raced, just the same way I was when listening to the Chains. Let the grief not last long, and let's celebrate in what we were offered. Life, love and thoughtful dreams for all the dark that lay in this world. You were always so far away, but I know that pain, and I won't walk away, like I used to do. Love forever.
I feel so low. Another star is lost to the evil Heroin.
AIC produced some great songs. Layne was part of something great that made a difference. RIP.
Rest in peace
Layne Staley: One of the biggest artists on this planet. I'm sad but he's not anymore... I believe in him and give respect to his decision... After giving all the beautiful examples of melodies and lyrics to us, he shouldn't be blamed for being a drug user. He was a true talent and he did what he wanted. You will live in our hearts forever. R.I.P
Layne, thanks for being a part of my life. Growing up I often turned to your lyrics and music for inspiration. Sorry it had to end this way. You will be missed. My condolences to the family and the remaining members of Alice in Chains. Rest in Peace Layne.......
We have lost the best voice of the rock music in the world. Go on singing' in my heart.
Ario Xenios, South Africa
It's a sad testament to our times that such an important musician died alone, unknown and unmourned by most people of the age I was when I was first touched by AIC's music. Let's hope future generations aren't so amiss. Layne's harmonies will forever be the sound-track to my teenage years. Good bye Layne, I wish it didn't have to end this way. Another great talent impaled on the end of a needle.
Layne Staley.....what can I say...his voice was brilliant. It was truly something else. Alice in chains were truly something. Their music meant a lot to me, especially Nutshell which has so much truth in it.
Stephen Ross, UK
He will be truly missed. His haunting lyrics were mesmerising. I was lucky enough to have seen the band, an experience I will not forget. RIP Layne
Pato Cuevas, Chile
After learning about the death of Layne Staley I was deeply moved.
Alice in Chains made growing up in the 90s far more enjoyable. He was a star with an abundance of talent and will be missed greatly. RIP.
Layne Staley has got to be one of the best entertainers ever. Everything he sang and wrote about came from the heart. It was all real. He will be missed very badly.
I think it's so sad that a man whose music was loved by millions around the world could die so alone. He will live on forever in his music.
I would've been hard-pressed to hear worse news this past weekend. Layne was and asset to his fans and undoubtedly those who knew him personally. I'll never get to see my favourite band in concert, but this isn't about that, I suppose. I've lost my best friend to heroin, her body is still here, but she's not, and now my music idol is gone. Maybe, finally, Layne can find happiness, as painful as it is for us who remain here, I know that he's found a better place. My heart to the rest of AIC...
John Wilkins, United States
AIC was the first band I ever saw play live. They set the standard for every show I ever saw after that(hundreds). Layne influenced my music and I still hear new bands trying to imitate the way that he sang. You will be missed but not forgotten Layne.
His voice was one of those very 'unique' voices that you could pick out if you tuned into a song midway through it. He was a talented musician, songwriter and vocalist. But, in the end, the addiction did him in. I was saddened, but not surprised. Heroin is not a drug that is very forgiving. Many heroin addicts seem to face a similar fate. Layne could not suppress his desire for the drug and it is sad - but he should have known better. Rest in peace, Layne. You will be missed.
I feared the day I would hear that Layne had died and I'm sorry it had to come so soon. Chains will live on forever as well as Layne's memory. That's the greatest thing about music. I don't have the words to convey my sadness. All I can say is Thank You for the songs you left us, I'll listen to them every day.
Some of the fondest memories of my teenage years are of me and my mates driving around in a beat-up old car, not going anywhere in particular, just driving. Empty fag packs and soda cans were strewn across the floor, springs popped out of the worn out seats and poked our legs as we drove over potholes and Alice in Chains was ALWAYS playing on the tape deck. Listening to AIC always takes me back to those long gone days. Thank you, Layne, for the music and the memories. Rest in peace.
Layne and Alice In Chains were a true inspiration to young musicians, due to their dark, twisted melodies and powerful lyrics. Layne depicted all of his pain and frustration through his lyrics, and the music complimented his words perfectly. AIC and the world of music will not be the same for his passing. R.I.P. Layne and let your music and words be the teachings for many generations.
Kent Moore, Canada
Of all the Seattle bands, I loved Alice in Chains best. "Jar of Flies" remains for me the perfect early 1990s album, even though it is half the length of a full CD. Such a rich and distinctive sound! I am saddened by his passing, but also not surprised. I only pray that his death may help lead others to sobriety...
Layne Staley and Alice in Chains changed the direction of music, along with Soundgarden, PJ, Nirvana and many others in the early days of the Seattle madness, that seemed to engulf all of us and twist pop culture into an entirely new face. They transcended all that 'grunge' hype by continuing to create some of the most memorable sounding music of any of the bands. His voice is haunting, a delicate line walking a balance between restraint and rage. I think I'm gonna throw on Mad Season and just sit back for a moment.
Layne Staley had the most touching and poignant voice I've ever heard. His vocal talents inspired me to get into singing, and for that I'm very grateful. The world has lost one of the most unique-sounding voices of the last century, but his great legacy will certainly live on in his many fans.
Great songwriter, great frontman and a great contributor to rock music. Will definitely be a loss for the music scene. "Into the flood again, same old trip it was back then."
His harmonies with Jerry Cantrell on laments such as 'Down In A Hole' and 'Rooster' rate as some of the worthiest musical moments of the grunge era, and the Unplugged shows proved that along with Nirvana and Pearl Jam they were leagues ahead of their peers.
I remember them from their beginnings as a band from my high school, and was so proud of their success. I didn't agree with the lifestyle choice that Layne made in regards to hard drugs, but I know that it was a integral part of the musical creativity that made them famous.
I hosted radio shows for seven years and Alice In Chains were excellent to work with. You could slot them into any rock or metal show and they fitted into almost any set. I guess without Layne the sound will change. Reckon I'll stay with the old CDs. Rock on Layne.
One of the greatest voices in rock, his lyrics and music with Alice In Chains have been an inspiration to a lot of people. The music will live on as a reminder of his talent which he shared with the world.
Layne had such an amazing voice and sung with intensity. Layne and Alice In Chains were pioneers of a style of music that was totally unique and ultimately rewarding.
One of the most influential vocalists ever to live! I think even the band could say this wasn't a surprise. Rest in peace, Layne! I will always have you in my ears!
Layne Staley will be missed by us all, for his beautiful voice, and songs. I discovered Alice in Chains and Layne when I was about 13 and they are still a big influence on my own musical endeavours. It makes me so sad that all the good ones die so young. "Say hello to heaven" Layne.
I hope your pain is over, thank you for the priceless nights spent with my beautiful wife listening. God bless.
Had once seen life through your lonely eyes, will miss you... Ali
I couldn't believe when my mom told me he was found dead. He's been a part of my life since the early 1990s, and I had always harboured the hope that I would get to see AIC in concert one day, and that I would see another album out of them. I even had a secret fantasy about meeting him and falling in love. :) I think I'm still in shock, and his loss hasn't fully touched me yet. I know so many people are in pain from this, and I will forever hold him, and his blinding honesty, close to my heart.
The end of a disturbingly creative talent. Facelift (their first album) was a revelation.
Dave Scott, Ireland
Layne Staley...the music world has lost its greatest ever vocalist. R.I.P Layne. My sorrow goes out to all his family and friends.
I can't believe yet another death from drugs in Seattle. I loved Layne, and I hope he is finally happy.
What a voice. What a band. The unique dark view, the harmonies with Jerry Cantrell. Jar of Flies and Sap have to stand as among the 90s' finest works.
RIP is all that needs to be said, one of the greatest has passed.
Alice In Chains was the most underrated band on the grunge scene. Layne Staley was a true original. His dark, emotive lyrics and unique vocal warble made their albums amazing and their live performances even better. It is sad that his private life was so turbulent, ultimately leading to his untimely death. I will miss him.
Layne, what happened man? Along with Kurt Cobain, you were my biggest inspiration, you had so much talent and you threw it away. Peace, respect and gratitude, may Alice in Chains live on. See you on the other side Layne. Matt BR> Matt Farrer, UK
We knew this day would come, but always hoped that he'd be able to beat his addiction and produce more great music. Sadly it was not to be.
Condolences to his family, friends and colleagues.
He will be missed.
Saddened by the loss. I enjoyed the music he wrote in Alice In Chains I saw them with Suicidal Tendencies in 1994, I think. I met him at a pub by himself whilst I was playing pool with my brother and a friend. He was a nice person who introduced himself before we approached him. He spoke openly about his drug habit to me. Addiction to such a substance would be very hard to live with. There's my tribute. I will continue to enjoy their music. Another loss to the music world.
Layne was one of the greatest singers out there. His voice was so amazing and beautiful. He will be truly missed in the music world. Rest in peace Layne! You are finally free!
A sincere fan
This is a major blow to me... I've been into Alice in Chains for many years, but I missed their last gig over here because I was ill. I always looked forward to the day they would come back, but now that hope has gone. Layne - you were an inspiration to me and many other people. You touched us all with your music, and your legacy will live on. My thoughts and regards to the Staley family, Jerry Cantrell, Mike Starr, Mike Inez and Sean Kinney.
Sorry to hear of the passing of Layne Staley. So much trouble in the world and here goes another talented individual with insurmountable trouble in his own soul. Sad to see you go, but now the weight has been lifted from you.
I'm just in shock. When Kurt Cobain died, it was so unreal. I don't think anything ever hit me as hard as that, but I was wrong. Driving in my car, I was listening to Rooster on the radio, and after the song it was announced Layne was dead. I was numb. So many years I wanted to see AIC in concert, so long... and now I just wish Layne could be back in his house, avoiding the press. Peace with you Layne, when you died a piece of my heart went with you, for I think we are all battling those demons in different ways. "My wings have been so denied."
Layne - you will be missed by us all. The inevitable finally happened and a void has been left in the world of music which no-one is fit to fill. A truly unique artist - his music will be his legacy. Alice never made a bad album.
Rest In Peace.
21 Apr 02 | Music
Alice in Chains singer found dead
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