Warrant Star: ‘We Tried To Keep Lane Sober’

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October 10, 2011 | 7:45am EST

Warrant guitarist Erik Turner has opened up about Jani Lane’s recent death from alcohol poisoning, revealing the rockers tried in vain to keep the former frontman sober.
The 47-year-old singer, who fronted the band between 1986 and 2004 as well as during a brief reunion in 2008, was found dead in a Los Angeles hotel room in August and toxicology tests showed he suffered “acute ethanol poisoning”.

His former bandmate Turner has now opened up about Lane’s long struggle with addiction, insisting the rockers did everything they could to help him during their 2008 comeback.

Turner reveals they hired an addiction expert to help Lane during their tour and banned alcohol while they were on the road, but “it was so bad that the sober coach quit. He said there was nothing that he could do.”

Turner tells RockMusicStar.com, “His old demons popped up again, and it made it impossible for us to function as a band. It was a huge disappointment because we were all very excited about the reunion…

“It was frustrating during that reunion time with Jani. We tried to be supportive; we would visit him in rehab as much as possible. The band paid for a sober coach to come on the road and try to keep Jani sober. We took all of the alcohol off of the tour rider. None of us were drinking.

“But he would just sneak off and disappear, and show up intoxicated later, or sometimes, he wouldn’t even show up. And he would have a hard time performing in his state. It was very stressful and disappointing for the band.”

Turner had little contact with the star after 2008, but he was devastated to hear of his death.

He adds, “It’s very sad and disappointing. Anytime that someone has all of that talent, and everything to live for, and for whatever reason, I just don’t know, he just couldn’t stop. It’s awful. It’s horrible for his kids and his family. I hadn’t spoken with him since 2008; we weren’t close anymore. But it was still very hurtful to hear.”