Yesterday, Alternative Nation reported on 8 unreleased Layne Staley songs being in the works. Last year, Jesse Holt commented on our interview with Layne’s mother Nancy discussing the material.
Not a bad article all in all, but I take exception with Nancy’s statement, “Don’t you suppose that after 13 years if there was something valuable, it would’ve been heard by now?” Nancy, who I call a friend (we used to have weekly check-in calls), has been wishy-washy in allowing my brother (Ron) and I to release the 8 tracks we have with Layne singing on them. It’s been a sore spot for me for a long time now, and continues to be. I’ve spent a lot of time and money getting the songs ready to be shopped, but Nancy and her attorney (mostly him) have stopped us at every turn. I think there are three songs which have mass appeal and so do those who have heard them. I think Nancy is wrong on this matter, there IS something valuable ready for release and I hope she comes to her senses one day. Layne’s fan would love this shit. One last thing–no offence to TIm–Tim knows about the unreleased tracks that Ron and I have in our possession, so I think it’s a little disingenuous to frame the question to Nancy the way he did. #LayneStaley #AliceInChains #Friends
He left a more recent comment around New Years as well discussing the material.
Without the use of Layne’s name the project couldn’t legally be promoted with any kind of effectiveness. I’ve had a few ideas on how to get them released, but the last time I spoke with the estate I was informed that until they settle the pending lawsuit with the band (Alice In Chains), the estate wasn’t going to be granting any rights regarding Layne’s likeness. With that said, the project gets put in a shoebox and pushed to the back of the closet.
Alice In Chains: The Untold Story author David de Sola discussed the material in a new article on his website.
“Layne would have been 20 or 21 years old at the time he recorded these songs. This material predates Alice in Chains: Facelift wasn’t released until August of 1990.”
“Things You Do” is the one song that features vocals recorded by Staley in the late 90’s. The unreleased versions differ from the leak version online.
David de Sola wrote about the summer 1996 and November 1997 versions of the song, “Musically and lyrically, the two later versions are the same. Stylistically, Layne’s vocals sound very different from any of his previous work. The difference is that in the 1997 version, he sounds indifferent, with no real power or feeling in the performance. Jason Buttino, who has recordings of both versions, attributes the change to the fact that the second version was recorded more than a year after Demri’s death. Buttino also said Jesse Holt— who declined to be interviewed for this book— had to boost the level on Layne’s vocals in the 1997 version because his voice was so soft and quiet.”