Pearl Jam Member Reveals How Layne Staley Made Him Cry


Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready discussed his time playing with Layne Staley in Mad Season during a recent discussion with Cameron Crowe. Alternative Nation transcribed McCready’s comments.

“That’s another one of my super proud yet sad moments in life, because again the casualties and fatalities from it. I miss those guys too, I kind of wish I knew what Layne and Baker, what would they be doing now? We’re all older, what would they do? That’s the thing that I think is kind of the saddest and most poignant about that time. But I feel like the music is always there, and I’m very proud of it. People will tell me that it means a lot to them, and that’s what it is about.”

“When I think about Layne, I remember him never talking crap about anybody, which is a weird thing, because we were all talking shit in Seattle. Cynical, dark, all that cliche crap, but he wouldn’t do that. Maybe he did it around other people, but he never did it around me. I don’t have a definitive one [memory] but a bunch of them.

I think he felt free with this record [Above], because I kind of said just do whatever you want to do, write some lyrics, do whatever you want to do, and I think that was a freeing thing for him in a way, at least that’s what he was saying at the time. I remember we wrote a song called ‘All Alone,’ which is the last song on the record. It was just music at first.”

“We recorded the music version of it, and then we went home, then Layne came in later and explained to me he was there all night, and he put these crazy vocals to it. He could harmonize like that, and figure out exactly what he was doing. So he did that on that song, and I didn’t hear it until the next morning, and I started crying, because it was so cool.”