April 5th is the most somber day of the year for fans of alternative rock music. Kurt Cobain, of Nirvana, died on April 5th 1994. Layne Staley, of Alice in Chains, died on April 5th 2002.
Both men fronted bands that revolutionized music in the early 1990s. Alice in Chains and Nirvana, both from Seattle, emerged from the grunge scene that also produced Pearl Jam and Soundgarden. They were dark, raw, and powerful.
Perhaps the biggest link between the two bands were the talented, troubled front-men. Kurt Cobain became the "voice of a generation" to many people. It was a role that he was reluctant to accept. Cobain struggled with heroin addiction and depression. Ultimately, his troubles led to his suicide (although many do not believe that Kurt Cobain killed himself).
Layne Staley also struggled with drug addiction. He disappeared from public eye in the mid 1990s and became a recluse. People that saw him in the late 1990s and early 2000s often commented that he looked 'sickly' and extremely thin. Former Alice in Chains bassist Mike Starr (who passed away in 2011) saw Layne Staley on April 4th, 2002. Starr believed that Staley was very ill, but Staley refused to call 911. Nobody ever saw Staley alive, after that. Staley was discovered weeks later. The autopsy concluded that he died of a Speedball mix of heroin and cocaine.
Cobain and Staley are forever linked by this date and by the incredible music they left.
Kurt Cobain (February 20, 1967- April 5, 1994)
Layne Staley (August 22, 1967- April 5, 2002)
Via 106.1 The End