Who Was Jani Lane?

Jani Lane

Warrant was and is a lesser known American glam rock band. Multi-instrumentalist Jani Lane joined Warrant from Plain Jane. He was born John Oswald at Akron, Ohio in 1964. His tenure with Warrant was erratic, as was his post-Warrant career, and the rest of his relatively short life. He died in unglamorous circumstances at Woodland Hills, California in August 2011, aged 47. Lane was said to have had no time for illegal recreational drugs; unfortunately, the same could not be said for the legal drug that has claimed so many lives in and out of music, and it was the demon drink that killed him.

Lane married three times and sired a daughter by each of his first two wives. He looked the archetypal glam rock star, and combined eloquence with good looks, as can be seen in this interview with Denise Ames.

He produced a considerable body of work, including covers. The posthumous release Catch A Falling Star sees Lane supplying the vocals for eight covers, more heavy metal than glam rock, and the musicianship isn’t at all bad. The opening track I Want You To Want Me doesn’t sound unlike the original by Cheap Trick; Panama would give Van Halen a run for their money; Photograph has a real Def Leppard feel; and Doctor Doctor, well, Mr Schenker wouldn’t have been ashamed of this.

Although Catch A Falling Star is really for dedicated Jani Lane fans, it is not a bad introduction for the current and later generations to the greatest music ever written, ever played, ever improvised, ever recorded.


About the author

Alexander Baron