REVOLVER What are your fondest memories of Layne?
MIKE INEZ Layne was just such a real human being, and such a good human too. He never had an ulterior motives. He’d never do any racist jokes, I never heard him talk shit about anybody. He was always very supportive of other bands, like on Lollapalooza, we had Tool, Rage Against the Machine, Fishbone, Dinosaur Jr., Primus, and Arrested Development. And by the end of that six-week tour in the states, we were all jamming with each other. Dudes would come down with us, and we’d go jam with them. But there was this crazy industrial Belgian band called Front 242 that was on that. And they didn’t speak good English, and they were kind of like doing their own thing. Turns out, they were great guys. It was just hard to relate to them because they were so foreign and everything was just a traveling circus. For some reason, Layne just loved that band. He would go up and jam with them; it was really cool. Out of the all the rocks stars—you know, Rage Against the Machine and Tool and all the rock star bands—he wanted to jam with the opener and play some crazy industrial music.
“Layne was such an icon – such an American original with such a distinctive voice,” Inez says. “The courage of William coming in like this is amazing. Layne was one of my favorite vocalists I’ve ever played with over the years. It was tough for William to try to step in at the beginning. I told him early on that the only way to win people over was one gig at a time, face-to-face. He puts his chin out to the audience and gives it his all every night. He’s well prepared and works hard. We all just blast it out every night now, and it’s great.”
Update from July 13th
Alice In Chains bassist Mike Inez discussed missing Layne Staley in a new Facebook posts. Inez noted that it has been 20 years since Alice In Chains performed at Tiger Stadium in Detroit, which was a part of Alice In Chains’ final series of shows in 1996 with Layne Staley.
“Damn 20 (FUCK 20??) years ago, our band played this KISS reunion show at the old Tiger Stadium in Detroit..and almost to the day, 20 years later, we went back and played the Football Stadium opening for Guns & Roses reunion in the same city..
Mixed emotions… I miss Layne but am proud to still be standing next to my brothers making a bunch of noise and laughing on the tour bus.