The Alice In Chains Song That Was Written To Say Goodbye To Layne Staley
Jerry Cantrell recently had a conversation with Andy Hall and talked about his new upcoming solo album ‘Brighten.’ In the album, he is covering the song: ‘Goodbye’ by Elton John, which was featured in his 1971 album ‘Madman Across the Water.’ He later revealed that they had collaborated with John before on a song written as a goodbye for Alice In Chains’ late vocalist Layne Staley.
Alice In Chains’ vocalist Layne Staley passed away from a speedball overdose in 2002. Following the unexpected and saddening event, the band released their first album seven years later, in 2009. The track ‘Black Gives Way to Blue’ was album’s title, and the title track was written in honor of Staley. Elton John worked with Alice in Chains for that album and played the piano on the tribute song.
Cantrell continued to talk about his upcoming album ‘Brighten’ and how happy he is to be working with Elton John again. But this time, Jerry is planning to release a cover of John’s 1971 song ‘Goodbye’ from his album ‘Madman Across Water.’ He stated that he sent John the demo, and the musician loved it.
Jerry Cantrell talked about ‘Black Gives Way to Blue’ by saying:
“Elton is top of the heap for me, and having him be a part of ‘Black Gives Way to Blue,’ our, if you want to call it a comeback record, with William and basically, on that song, saying goodbye to Layne, and also saying hello to the future for us…”
Here is what he said about covering ‘Goodbye’ in his upcoming album:
“To have him be a part of that was a really important and kind of a full-circle moment. I did a couple of shows in L.A. in the process of demoing stuff for ‘Brighten’ in December, and we closed both shows with ‘Goodbye.’ It closes ‘Madman Across the Water,’ one of my favorite Elton John albums, and coincidentally, it ended up being the closing track on this record. Both albums are 9-song records, and ‘Goodbye’ is the last song on each of them.
I sent Elton the demo, I just wanted to make sure he was cool with it, make sure I didn’t butcher his tune, and he was like, ‘No, man, it’s beautiful, you did a great job, you absolutely should use it.’ So it was great to get that information from him, that he was okay with what I did with his tune.”
It seems like working with John had always been important for Cantrell. He covered the song several times during his live shows, but the studio version will be released on October 29 with the album ‘Brighten.’