Christian rockers LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE have postponed the release of their collaboration with Jani Lane after they were accused of exploiting the late WARRANT singer’s death.
Lane, 47, was found dead in a California hotel room last week after a long battle with alcoholism. One of his final recordings was a song called “Sin”, which was originally supposed to be made available in early 2012 as part of a double CD from LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE entitled “The Cigar Chronicles”.
The track, which features additional appearances by JK Northrup of KING KOBRA (who recorded and mixed the track), Keri Kelli of ALICE COOPER, and Bill Leverty of FIREHOUSE, had its release date moved forward to this week because the people involved with the project felt “obligated to [Lane‘s] family, friends, and fans to share one of his last artistic endeavors.”
However, the announcement that the song was being made available so soon after Lane‘s death ignited a fan backlash and LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE has now decided to wait until after Jani‘s funeral to release the cut.
Commented LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE leader Justin Murr: “When I woke Tuesday morning, I had 322 e-mails in my inbox, some stating they couldn’t wait to hear [the song] or they couldn’t find it and others condemning me for exploiting Jani. Included in these e-mails were over 30 requests from radio stations wanting the song to play as soon as I serviced them with the single. The last (for me) were the most convincing and that was from people very close to Jani asking me to wait ’till at least after the funeral.
“The one thing that I got from all these emails was love, you — his fans — loved the artist Jani Lane and the music he created with WARRANT and by himself.
“I, with good conscience, need to allow his family, friends, and his fans to grieve. Once we get past this, we then can celebrate the new music he helped create with LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE.
“He helped craft the lyrics with Scott Bolan and myself and I do believe it shows where he was at spiritually at the time and should help ease some of the pain of his loss.
“If you decide to purchase the song, please know a portion of the proceeds WILL go to Jani Lane, because he helped co-write the song.
“I am sorry again for not showing more compassion to his family, friends, and fans. Anyone who knows me (really knows me) knows me wanting to release this at this time was not a money motivation but more of a ‘message’ motivation.
“Soon we will have the official release date so you, his fans, can hear this amazing song.
“In closing, I think the chorus of the song suits better than anything I can say… ‘Let me be the man I could have been / the one you first breathed your life into / my soul in your embrace / deliver me….deliver me from my sins.'”
A short audio sample of “Sin” can be streamed at this location.
Here is what people associated with the LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE project had to say regarding the “Sin” single:
CJ Snare (FIREHOUSE): “Jani Lane was the Vincent Van Gogh of ‘hair band melodic hard rock.’ A brilliant artist wrestling with his inner self. I came to know him through years of touring together and through many conversations. It was difficult to see him fight with his demons. He was my friend, my contemporary, and he will be truly missed.
“This may be one of, if not his last recording. The performance has a poignant message in relation to his life story. I know that for him, rock and roll heaven is indeed, not too far away!!!
“Nothing but love to you, my brother Jani.”
Bill Leverty (FIREHOUSE): “In March of 2011, I was asked by Justin Murr to play on a song called ‘Sin’. I gladly accepted the offer because LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE always puts out great music. The demo had a scratch vocal by the co-writer JK Northrup that sounded really good, but I did not know who was going to be chosen to sing the real vocal. I’ve just learned that I was matched up with Jani Lane.
“I will tell you that Jani did an amazing job with his vocals.
“I am truly honored to be playing on this recording, which is quite possibly the last recording Jani ever made. I have extremely fond memories of touring with him since 1991 when we all became good friends on WARRANT‘s ‘Blood, Sweat, & Beers Tours’. FIREHOUSE has played well over a 100 shows since then with WARRANT and with Jani‘s solo gig. Our friendship has never faded.
“This song’s lyrical content is very timely, and shows Jani in an extremely vulnerable and honest light, where he bares his soul in an uncanny way.
“Rest in peace, my brother, your music will always be with me…”
JK Northrup: “Like everyone, I was shocked to hear about the passing of Jani.
“I was privileged to have opened a show with WARRANT in Los Angeles at a large venue called the Country Club. It was a sold-out show, and just before they got signed! It was easy to see why Jani and WARRANT would make such an impact on the music world with his stage presence and songwriting abilities. Now some 24 years later, I found myself working with Jani on a song called ‘Sin’ for the upcoming album with Justin Murr‘s LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE called ‘The Cigar Chronicles’.
“Jani‘s vocals and input on this song are very powerful!
“Although it was not intended for release until 2012, all involved felt the importance to get this song out to all of his fans to hear this amazing song. I know he will be smiling when this song is heard by all.
“My sincere condolences to all of his family and friends. He will be missed, but not forgotten!
“R.I.P., Jani Lane!”