Monday, March 21, 2011

Memorial held for Alice in Chains bassist Mike Starr

The Seattle Times reports friends, family and fans of Alice in Chains and its first bass player, Mike Starr, gathered at the International Fountain at Seattle Center Sunday to listen to the band's music as a public memorial to Starr.

The former AIC bassist died March 8 in Salt Lake City; he was 44.

Starr left the Seattle band in 1993 after playing on its first two EPs, "We Die Young" and "Sap," and its first two albums, "Facelift" and "Dirt."

Mike publicly battled drug addiction on the reality show "Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew" early last year; he talked on camera about possibly being the last person to see AIC lead singer Layne Staley alive; Staley died in 2002 from an overdose.

Many people at the fountain had personal ties to Starr.

"Mike was always a rock star. He had a big personality,"
said Ricco Frederick, of Seattle, who met Starr in the late 1980s. "He had a lot of demons, and I hope he's in a peaceful place now."

Greg Gendron flew in from Los Angeles for the memorial. He had met Starr through friends and did not know him well but admired his musical style. Gendron found the "Celebrity Rehab" appearances moving, particularly because "everyone thought he was clean."

Kelley McKenzie, of Seattle, whose favorite band in high school was Alice in Chains, met Starr briefly a couple of years ago.

"He was really chill," said McKenzie, who played the band's music all last week after hearing about Starr's death. "My roommates are sick of it."

Alice In Chains Alice In Chains

Alice In Chains – Sea Of Sorrow
Moore Theatre – Seattle, WA - 1990

See also:

Mike Starr tops the hennemusic Hot 10
Alice In Chains: Mike Starr public memorial confirmed
Alice In Chains: Mike Starr not a suicide, friends say
Alice In Chains: Mike Starr’s last voice mail
Alice In Chains issue statement on passing of Mike Starr
Former Alice In Chains bassist Mike Starr found dead