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Farrell Buries Jane's

Singer blames ex-mates for tarnishing band's legacy

July 2, 2004 12:00 AM ET
A week after guitarist Dave Navarro, drummer Stephen Perkins and bassist Chris Chaney announced Jane's Addiction's split through a post on Navarro's Web site, singer Perry Farrell explains the break-up from his perspective.

"The band went astray, falling into shallow holes," Farrell tells Rolling Stone. "There was no consideration for the legacy she had built up over the years. Jane was getting stripped of her majesty."

"My separation came about because this legendary band was taken over by new owners," Farrell continues. "Music that was once relevant and graceful had become clumsy as a circus seal tooting his horns . . . Jane doesn't strip for anyone but me. I brought Jane's Addiction to life, it is only fitting that I am the one to bury her."

The latest fracture follows a three-year Jane's Addiction reunion that included a Lollapalooza headlining tour and last year's Strays, the band's first album of original material since 1990's Ritual de lo Habitual. Jane's had regrouped in 1997 for a tour and released Kettle Whistle, a mixed batch of live tracks, demos and newly recorded songs.

Before splitting in 1991, Jane's Addiction (Farrell, Navarro, Perkins and bassist Eric Avery) helped shove alternative music into the mainstream, paving the way for bands like Nirvana and the Smashing Pumpkins.

"I wish for Jane's Addiction to be remembered as one of the seminal bands of her era," says Farrell. "She laid a foundation for unbridled underground music to rise up on. The newly coined 'alternative music' came on to replace a stale music scene. We encouraged people to make scary choices."

While his ex-mates have formed a new band with Skycycle singer Steve Isaacs, Farrell, who released the solo album Song Yet to Be Sung in 2001, plans to forge ahead on his own. "I am staying the course," he says. "At my pace, I have twenty more years in which to perform. I ponder that my greatest achievements still lay ahead."

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