It amazes me the anguish you can feel over a death of someone you met in passing a handful of times but never really knew. Each day I wake up and at some point in the morning, he is on my mind…. Jani Lane was the lead singer and songwriter for Warrant. I’ve written about him in the past and I bet I’ll have another blog or two about him in the future.
I suppose Jani is my Elvis. I’m an honest person so, here it is……. I loved him. From the moment I heard his voice and laid my eyes upon him sometime in the late ’80’s, he was the long hair for me. My girlfriend, Christine and I followed Warrant from Ft. Lauderdale up to Manhattan one year… I wrote about that adventure after he passed away back in August. https://snbgallery.wordpress.com/2011/08/20/i-loved-a-hair-band-from-the-80s/
Jani Lane wrote some fun, raunchy songs, serious songs and very heart-felt songs. He had a gift of a beautiful voice that made not only me, but probably a million girls fall in love with him. He could touch you with a smile or a gesture and he could turn a stadium into a small, cozy bar because he made everyone his friend each night he performed. The thing was every song that was played each night, he, himself wrote. The music came to him (not sure if it was easy through the years or if he had to “work” to gather inspiration for his songs) and he made the words and notes into magic. He wrote the hits and the obscure fan favorites that didn’t get airplay. He wrote the music that made Warrant famous and made us fall in love with him or the band. Jani was a charismatic frontman with a warm heart and inquisitive soul. It came through in his music and in his interviews.
Some of my favorite songs are some of the oldies but goodies and some newer like Heaven, Sometimes She Cries, Mr. Rainmaker, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Bed of Roses, Stronger Now, Bitter Pill, Down Boys, Southern Comfort, Hollywood (so far, so good), Thin Disguise.. just to name some. I’ve heard some of his solo work and I really like that as well. I just wish I had more of it so I could say I have new favorites. I had Back Down to One, but lost it in a move. I’d love for Jabberwocky to be released for the fans and family. But, none the less, he has touched so many people with his music. He wrote songs that people loved and his writing was always amazing. He was very underrated and hugely talented. Jani deserves kudos and accolades for his work. He should have had it before he passed.
The music he made always brought a smile to my face and made me feel good. The way he wrote his lyrics was pure storytelling at it’s finest. I think he could have been a great novelist or screenwriter if it wasn’t for the music. Jani has inspired me through the years and I’ve been writing a work of fiction that I hope to one day finish. When I write, I usually listen to his music. It has been the soundtrack of a huge part of my life. I don’t think it’s too huge of a stretch to say that it inspired me deeply. “Follow that Band” was brought to life by a fun trip to Florida and a crazy adventure that followed. Maybe this year will be my year to write 30,000 more words in addition to the approximately 60,000 I already have written, and finish my dream to have a novel written by me.
Everyone has someone who has touched them and imprinted themselves on your heart. Luckily for me, I have a couple of others, too *not music related* ;)… I think if you are a regular blog reader you know who they are and if you’re not, if you take a look around on this site, you’ll know….. but Jani was a muse of mine for even longer than S&B. He is my longest crush/love. For more than 20 years I loved him, followed his career… Highs and the lowest of lows. None of it mattered to me because I loved him anyway. I wished him strength, will power & people to love him through his bad times and cheered him during his great times. I wish he had more great times ahead of him… Maybe he does, but someplace else with his people who have already passed on.
To me, Jani was breathtakingly gorgeous inside and out! His long blond hair in his early years, with those beautiful, big blue eyes and that soulful voice…<sigh> Back in the day, I had made this huge piece of plywood (maybe 2’x5′), left over from one of my dad’s projects, into a “Warrant-Jani Lane” board. All my Metal Edge magazines were cut up and I made this huge-ass collage of them. I think I worked on it for a year and had it for about 10… There were so many pictures of Jani on that board… hehe… Wish I had it now! Jani was on my wall when I was young, then found a home in my heart and probably always will be there.
As time went on, I met and married my husband and didn’t follow the news about Jani or Warrant so much anymore. Life got in the way but from time to time, I would play my CD’s or tapes (hehe) and remember my good times with friends & concerts I went to. A few years ago I found him on Myspace and we messaged back and forth a little bit. I wish I saved those messages. I wish I really told him how he touched my life and how he lived in a part of my heart. I was supposed to see Warrant play on their reunion tour in 2008, but my date at the Asbury Park Convention Hall was canceled due to Tom Keifer (Cinderella) blowing out his voice box. How I would have loved one more chance, one more opportunity to see him live, hear some of my favorite songs and be my inner fangurl again.
I was fortunate enough to have met him a few times in the early ’90’s. I was fortunate enough to be old enough during Warrant’s heyday and go to many concerts. It was all such a good time, always electric, raw and real. Jani was a genuine showman, with talent oozing from his pores. He was a bright star of the era and he proved with his many ventures over the past 10 years that with a little faith and heart, he had staying power. Jani has an amazing soul & spirit and still has the power to touch us, even from Heaven, through his music, fans, friends and most importantly, his family.
Jani weighs heavily on my mind now. I think about him so much. I think about his family, his girls and his close friends. They all have my condolences and my prayers for peace & comfort. I joined a Facebook group called “Jani Lane Legacy (Official Organization)” It is run by his family. His family is so kind to his fans. They answer our questions and share stories about Jani/Johnny and make all of us feel welcome. I, as a long time fan, really appreciate their kindness and openness about their loss. To be able to interact with them is a blessing & you can feel Jani’s spirit come thru his family’s page. They loved him with everything they had and it shows. There is a peace about the page even though there are questions surrounding his death & another fanpage. If you were his fan or maybe just curious about Jani, you should check out this page:https://www.facebook.com/pages/Jani-Lane-Legacy-Official-Organization/285329798173572?ref=ts It is worth the click and the like in my opinion.
circa 1991 🙂 lol