It’s with great sadness that we must once again add to the Hard Rock and Heavy Metal obituary postings as just this evening, singer Jani Lane (most famously known for being in the Glam band Warrant) was found dead in his hotel room. He was 47 years old. TMZ.com seemed to be the first to report the news and then it spread like a wildfire across the Hard Rock and Metal websites and found shock and sadness being delivered by numerous Twitter accounts of music’s most influential people.
Jani Lane was born John Kennedy Oswald on February 1, 1964 and came into the largest public prominence with his band Warrant during the tail end of Glam Metal’s rule in 1988. I will admit to not really being interested in the band when they started invading the video network of MTV because I was more intrigued by heavier stuff, but when I had the chance to reflect upon their first couple of albums in the remastered format many years later had to say that there was a certain quality to them that others sorely lacked. Lane was a troubled sort in terms of the public life we got to see on shows like “Celebrity Fit Club” where his seemingly endless battle with alcohol addiction appeared to be an unstoppable force in his life. In interviews he seemed to hate being referred to as “The Cherry Pie guy” as he felt he amounted to more than that in life, and as an observer looking in on that statement, I always felt he should have been happy that this particular song brought so much attention to his work and happiness to his fans. I guess the grass is always greener on the other side and there was likely a lot of distress brought on by this kind of fame. He would later recant the statement about the tune saying how the interview caught him on an off day and he did like how it keeps being played so many years later.
Lane married Bobbie Brown (from the “Cherry Pie” video) in 1991 and the pair had a daughter (Taylar Jayne Lane). They divorced in 1993. The cause of Lane’s death have not been publicly disclosed at the time of this writing but I am sure that we shall learn them soon enough. The Internet has a way of making things that would never go around come out very quickly. I did know that the singer recently taped an episode of Eddie Trunk’s “That Metal Show” for VH1 Classic and this will air when the season begins its run in the early Fall. Sadly, I never had the opportunity to see Warrant in concert when he reunited with the band or when he performed with Great White during Jack Russel’s recovery from surgery. I would have liked to had done that. On behalf of the PiercingMetal site and its creative team I wish consolation and healing to Jani’s family, friends and numerous devoted fans. He made his mark on a genre for sure and he shall be missed by many. Rest in Peace Jani Lane, many thanks for some truly memorable tunes.
PiercingMetal.com has reviewed some of the Warrant catalog of releases and those can be perused HERE.
Learn more about Jani Lane’s life via his Wikipedia entry HERE.
3 thoughts on “R.I.P. Jani Lane (former Warrant): 8/11/2011”
This is very sad news, Whem TMZ , those bloody parasites, broke the news last night I was hoping they were wrong, but I received MTV and various other music news emails this morning confirming his death. I am saddened at his passing as I never had the pleasure of seeing him on stage. He left us way to soon , I think he had so much more to give the music community and of course his family.
If you think deeply about it, MTV was responsible for ruining the careers, and, in some cases like Jani’s, the lives of many musicians. I remember all too clearly how all of a sudden, what seemed like overnight, MTV simply stopped airing music videos from bands they had once supported like Warrant. Then Headbanger’s Ball was cancelled. It seemed someone got a high-ranking job there and made the decision to stop supporting these bands and embrace hip-hop and pop instead. Many of these musicians got new careers and stopped doing music altogether, but for some, like Jani, it was too difficult to do anything else but music. He couldn’t make a living at it, which I believe, is what ultimately killed him. Being bitten by the fame bug and then losing it all is probably worse than never making it at all. I feel sad for his daughters and that it wasn’t enough for him to simply be a good father to them.
The only person that killed Jani was Jani! Lot’s of band’s fell by the wayside in the 80’s and they mangaed to get by just fine. The man was a junkie and alcoholic. His kids alone should have been reason enough for him to get clean.