Me and Layne continued to be super shy around each other and that really never changed. One time we were alone watching a show called Hunter in the office of the Music Bank. The two main characters started kissing. Me and Layne just looked shyly at each other and both of us were visibly tense and felt awkward. I didn’t drink all that much back then because I worked and went to college and didn’t want to be hungover all the time but it definitely would have loosened me up around that man! Layne drank beer but I never saw him really drunk. I don’t want to get into the topic of drugs here but it was true that Layne was doing a lot of cocaine back then. I never did it at that time in my life.
One night, a bunch of us were at The Music Bank deciding whether or not to go to a warehouse party or just stay at The Music Bank. We decided to go to the party so I rode with Layne in his car for the first time.
His radio was not tuned in to a rock station like I would have thought. It was on some mellow station and the song You Got it All by the Jets was playing. He reached to change the station but I told him to leave it because I actually liked that song. So he left it. So he is driving along and approaching a red light. Layne put on the brakes and suddenly tons of beer cans came tumbling and crashing to the front of the car from underneath the seats. I looked at him with a questioning but playful “WTF?” look. He seemed embarrassed but gave me a shy smirk and chuckled.
The party was at a place called Regan’s warehouse. Once inside we spotted Johnny Bacolas and Morgan Gallagher. It was a huge space with parked cars everywhere inside. I’d been there once before for a Sleze/Alice N Chains show, those pics are all over the web now, with various sources taking credit for them.
I was wearing the white hat with the netting on it, the exact same one I had on when I met Layne. He was wearing a long light tan coat and a brown hat. He looked at me, reached over and took my hat off while simultaneously taking his off! Then he put his hat on my head, put mine on his, then looked at me and said, “C’mon, let’s socialize!” Then without waiting for me he took off and started talking to everyone while wearing my hat. I just leaned back against a car next to Johnny and watched Layne flitting around happily while wearing my hat. I thought it was so cute!
Suddenly something crashed through one of the windows and I saw Morgan double over saying he had glass in his eye. Morgan turned out to be okay but never did figure out exactly what happened. There was talk that it was either a rock or a bullet from a gunshot. I recently talked with Nick Pollack and Morgan about this and Nick seems to think it happened at the show they played prior and not the night of that particular party. Either way, we know for certain Morgan got a bit of glass in his eye at the warehouse one of the two nights we were there from something crashing through the window.
So it was getting late and I had to go. Layne wanted to stay but I had to work the next day. I offered to take a cab home so he could stay but he said no and drove me home like a gentleman. I was in college and still lived with my parents. Once we got to my house, we kissed and stuff for awhile before I headed inside.
Layne surprised me with his many talents. I remember one time I arrived at The Music Bank and saw Layne behind the desk in the office drawing. I knew he has designed band logos but didn’t know he could really draw until that day. I could draw too but at that point I had not picked up a pencil in over 4 years. I stood next to him to see what he was drawing and busted out laughing. He was drawing a caricature of his band mate Johnny holding a giant Q-tip (inside joke). Layne and I laughed so hard about that drawing.
In addition to being a musician and artist, he was very funny and witty, and although shy, there were times when he seemed to really liked being the center of attention. One time everyone was gathered in the office around the TV to watch a video interview of Layne and Johnny. The only thing I actually remember about that video is that the camera zoomed in on Layne, who was smoking a cigarette. Layne proceeded to turn the cigarette around so the lit end was in his mouth …all without using his hands. LOL!
I also remember a meeting in the office about their name. They had ditched the name Sleze but Layne was asking “Do we call ourselves Alice ‘N Chains or Alice IN Chains?”
I feel fortunate to have witnessed one practice where Layne ran back a forth between their practice room and Jett Silver’s putting finishing touches on the song called “Queen of the Rodeo”!
….and then there was that time I played drums at an Alice N’ Chains rehearsal…I will tell that one in Part 4.
Edited by Cindy C
**Featured Image courtesy of LaynetheLegend.net & Christy Kells-Frederick