Lanegan – Greg Prato – Book Review
by Killian Laher
Cover Photo credit – Charles Peterson
“Grunge’s golden era gave us some of the greatest rock voices of all-time – Chris Cornell, Kurt Cobain, Layne Staley, Eddie Vedder, and of course, Mark Lanegan. During a recording career that spanned several decades, Lanegan’s unmistakable and instantly-recognizable vocals were featured on classic recordings as a member of various groups (Screaming Trees, Queens of the Stone Age), plus collaborations (Isobel Campbell, Greg Dulli), guest spots (UNKLE, Soulsavers), and steady solo work.”
Journalist Greg Prato has put together a collection of interviews with many different folk associated with Mark Lanegan. The interviews are broken up and woven together as themes, which makes for a very readable book. Gary Lee Conner of the Screaming Trees provides lots of new revelations about Lanegan, as do various folk who collaborated with him, Chris Goss, Nick Oliveri, Alain Johannes, Mike Johnson and many others. Amusingly, Conner sticks the boot into Stone Temple Pilots at one point.
At times the book is quite poignant, one chapter asks the interviewees when they last spoke to or saw Mark. The book finishes with the author’s interview with Mark Lanegan which took place two months before he died. Not a definitive biography of Mark Lanegan by any means, but a really interesting collection for fans. There is plenty of information here not found elsewhere. It’s particularly good to read Gary Lee Conner’s (guitarist for the Screaming Trees) account of Lanegan, which is not score-settling by any means, but just a counterpoint to Mark Lanegan’s autobiography. There are some great insights here from people who knew and worked with him, and it’s well worth a read.
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