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Layne Staley, Angry Chair: A Look Inside the Heart & Soul of an Incredible Musician [Paperback]

Adriana Rubio , Layne Staley
2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Feb 2003
Rock Singer Layne Staley was one of the most private, mysterious and misunderstood performers ever! His story is told by his mother, sister and Layne himself. It dispels the myths about Layne's childhood, his early days in music, and the final, very private years of his life. It contains dozens of never-before-seen drawings, writings and photographs...that all shaped the ALICE IN CHAINS' songwriter/singer who sold millions of CDs...helping revolutionize modern rock.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 146 pages
  • Publisher: Xanadu Enterprises (Feb 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0933638132
  • ISBN-13: 978-0933638136
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 15.2 x 22.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 752,587 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

If Kurt Cobain's journals weren't tragic enough, try Angry Chair, a biography of Alice In Chains' Layne Staley. -- Rolling Stone, March 6, 2003

Layne gives the author his blessing to reveal the harsh truth behind heroin addiction. Layne finally reveals where the journey started. -- Metal Hammer , May 2003

From the Publisher

In April 2002 the music world lost a truly great musician. The Staley Family lost a son, brother, uncle...they will never forget. Now read the serious truth about Layne Staley from his own words and the words of his closest family members during the last year before his death.
You already knew Layne was once on top of the music world as the frontman for ALICE IN CHAINS...cranking out memorables songs: "Man In The Box," "Angry Chair," "Junkhead," "I Can't Remember," "Rooster" and "Dirt"...among many others. But how did he really get there? Find out.
What was life really like for the patient, disciplined, loving Layne?
Why did his world turn so dark when he was only 8-years-old?
How and why did he come up with such shocking music?
What did he intend it to mean? Find out. The Author respectfully peers into Layne's life to explore these and other questions. The book's goal is to discover Layne's innermost feelings and motivations. Rock Writer Adriana Rubio also explores The Renaissance Era to demonstrate the connection between Layne's artworks and that historical period. The reader quickly discovers Layne was no ordinary rock singer.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not particularly impressive 8 July 2005
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I bought this book because there is a real dearth of material out there - scandalously enough! - about Layne Staley. The book is badly written, and the author refers too frequently to herself and her own struggle with anorexia. She justifies the self-references by claiming that Layne told her to write about herself. Be that as it may, as a 'professional' writer, she should have realised that anyone buying the book buys it for information regarding the life of Layne Staley, and for no other reason! We can do without narcissism in somebody else's biography!

There are some interesting things in the book: some of Layne's own artwork, an early C.V., and lots of direct quotes, both from Layne and his immediate family. These things make the book worth having.

I recommend this book, not because of any intrinsic merit the book may have - it doesn't - but because there is a real shortage of information out there on Layne, and the author at least went to the trouble of collecting various materials together to give all the knowledge-hungry Layne fans out there some rare insights into his personal life.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good but.... 22 Sep 2003
Format:Paperback
While this book does have some useful insights into Layne's life and feelings, in parts the book writes like an eleven year old's school project. In one instance the author describes what Layne's mum made her for dinner which as most would agree, does not help make for a great book . The book also has the failing of at times giving the impression that the author viewed Layne as some sort of god who could do no wrong which is clearly not the case though it wasn't all his fault. In short, the content is there but is covered up by the writings of someone who has done extensive research and has a lot of ideas but has no clue how to get these across, which can leave the reader extremely frustrated! Caution advised.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Purchase with real caution.... 23 Jun 2006
By Mookie
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
...because this really isn't an impressive book at all. The author provides no real insight into Staley - despite some reasonably close access to family members. The book is badly edited and Rubio's prose is self-indulgent, sloppy and blatantly not her first language. It's marginally better than John Brandon's dreadful Mike Starr book, and she gets full marks for enthusiasm and passion for her subject, but you'll digest this book quickly and come away none the wiser.

There's a good book to be written on Staley out there somewhere.... this aint't it.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I regret buying this 24 July 2005
Format:Paperback
I wanted to know about Layne Staley so I bought this book.... I would have done better just reading pages off the internet. This book was appalling. I don't think anyone should buy it -why? Er - well how about the author was more concerned about talking about 14th century renaissance art for pages and pages at a time and it having no relevance to Layne at all. Also the fact she compared his drug addiction to her anorexia - ???? I don't see how they're the same exactly - at least - she failed to come to a conclusion on that part.

The most disappointing part of all the book is that she managed to interview Layne's mother and sister and yet there is nothing in this book that tells us about the real Layne - as the book states. Instead the author told us about what she ate for dinner there and how complex her meals are because she suffers from anorexia.

Actually - she even interviewed Layne on the phone - or so she claims - we arent told anything else about the interview. She claims he told her something she promised she would take to her grave with her. Her claim to fame "I was the last person to interview Layne Staley before he died"

Big porkies if you ask me - I seriously doubt what she said - probably because it's so badly written!

Oh - I do forget - there are pictures of pots Layne made as a child in school. Wow. If that's what you want to see then great - buy this book. But remember this book is purely about the author - who went to visit Layne's mam and failed to find out anything interesting.

Conclusion - Don't buy it!
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