Saturday, April 20, 2013

The Never Ending Mad Season

Don't you hate it when you have a picture in your mind and yet have no way to accurately describe it?
I have looked a little on the usual internet sources for more of Layne's art work that ended up on the cover of Mad Season, and have found none. 

 I know that there was a rumor that someone was holding some of it hostage -- demanding money and/or selling it. My source is very reliable, so I think a "shame on you" is in order for someone because I know that Layne had several sketch books filled with art similar to the Mad Season cover.
This is the very short version of the story, only because there is nothing to gain for anyone by me telling sad stories of Layne's using. 
Still, it is a vivid memory of a moment in our lives that is one of those "It's A Wonderful Life" moments, where you know that your presence at that time may have had an influence in someone's life that then went on to affect many. 

  I remember that summer, I had moved back from living in L.A. for a while and then in New Mexico where I had gotten married. I was house sitting on Lake Washington for my best friend in a beautiful house and had taken Layne and Demri over there to stay with us. I was clean but Demri and Layne were not. Today, most addicts would be smarter and simply stay away from people using. But these were different times, we were simply too young and naive to make those kind of smart choices.
To prove I am not exaggerating, I will just say that most people with his kind of talent and me and Demri with our supposed charm and beauty... people like us are not who you envision shooting coke on a beautiful hot summer day in a nice house by a lake. At least I hope not.

 I was not using, but still I was there and even though I hated coke, I let them do it in my  friend's house with my new husband there, who was so thrilled to be around Layne, and also did not react the way someone would today. I mean, I suppose there are some idiots still out there that think it's okay to do, but the people I know today know that there is nothing fucking okay about it. 

  One night Layne and I were sitting at the dining room table (I remember the room because I have always loved long dining room tables), and we were joking that one day we would have one big enough to seat all our friends. I showed him a bunch of Andy's lyrics, and he said "I want to use some of them. We should write together and somehow combine them."
Of course, even high as a kite,  we knew that this just could not be done. It wouldn't be right. But the interesting part is that here he and I were, with Andy's lyric books, and his huge black sketch books full of the art and lyrics that would become Mad Season, and no one else cared. We knew that, that there was no real interest in Andy's lyrics at that time and that if we wanted to use his lyrics we could.
 Later that night, Demri and I got in a fight, because she had offered my husband heroin. I literally had her held up by her neck on the wall of The Paramount. Layne yelled, "No Xana!"...forever protecting his girl even when she behaved badly. When we all calmed down, we talked more about the art and photo shoot that the art came from.

He reminded me that it was me that had dropped them off at The Smith Tower for the photo shoot. I did remember that. Pulling up in the Z car and him saying, "You're gonna love what we're doing today." Maybe listening to NIN on the way there gave them a little inspiration!
 Not to mention he later forgot his sketch books with all the artwork and lyrics in my car, and frantically called me. He didn't have to say a word, I was like "I know, I'll be right there," and rushed it all out to his mom's with a pair of Doc Martin's he had bought for his sister. 

 I would love to think I had a positive influence and maybe played a small part in the stories he later told in his lyrics. Also, I hope I was a positive influence as an artist. They saw all of my and Andrew's photos and wanted to do the same in their own style. So as far as art being an important part of one's expression and flowing into one's performance, I do believe he had that ability and that we all influenced each others' art and music.  After all, in our world, it's just another Mad Season... but how you are remembered and the words and music you leave behind... that is forever....
                                                          Photo by Jack Plasky

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