Published Aug 12, 2011Jani Lane, former singer of '80s pop metal outfit Warrant, was found dead in an L.A. hotel room yesterday (August 11). He was 47 years old.
While a cause of death has yet to be determined, the L.A. Times reports that alcohol and prescription drugs were found in the room when police discovered the body around 5:30 p.m. local time. Los Angeles County Coroner's deputy chief Ed Winter explained that Lane was "discovered unresponsive" and shortly thereafter pronounced dead by paramedics.
Lane was born John Kennedy Oswald February 1, 1964, in Akron, OH, but changed his name to Jani Lane after moving to Florida in 1983. He then moved to California, where he started up Warrant in 1986. The band quickly rose in the burgeoning hair metal scene, with their 1988 debut Dirty Rotten Stinking Filthy Rich spawning the No. 2 megahit power ballad "Heaven."
However, it's 1990's Cherry Pie and its title track that Lane will best be remembered for. The catchy yet raunchy glam rock number was a Top Ten hit and has since become an iconic track of the era.
Lane himself had a love/hate relationship with the tune, once telling VH1, "My legacy is 'Cherry Pie.' Everything about me is 'Cherry Pie.' I'm the 'Cherry Pie' guy. I could shoot myself in the fucking head for writing that song."
He later backed off, telling Blabbermouth in a 2007 interview "I'm happy as a clam to have written a song that is still being played and still dug by so many people."
Lane left Warrant in 1993 following the release of the previous year's Dog Eat Dog, but returned to the fold in 1994. He exited the band again in 2004 only to return, but his 2008 departure was his last.
The beleaguered star also recorded a solo disc, 2002's Back Down to One.
Lane also had some trouble with the law, and served 120 days in jail following a DUI in 2010.