BMI was saddened to learn of the passing of singer/songwriter Mark Lanegan, who died Tuesday at the age of 57. One of the preeminent voices of `90s-era grunge, Lanegan found initial renown singing for the Seattle band, Screaming Trees, whose sound meshed aspects of psychedelia with the punk-inspired underground rock of the era, distinctively anchored by Lanegan’s deep, earthy baritone. Originally a stridently independent band, the Screaming Trees won greater acclaim with their sixth studio album, Sweet Oblivion, on Epic Records, while placement of their single “Nearly Lost You” on the soundtrack to 1992 film Singles made them MTV regulars with the song peaking at No. 5 on Billboard’s Alternative Airplay chart.
When the band split in 2000 after fourteen years together, Lanegan launched a solo career, releasing several albums that embraced elements of acoustic roots rock, country and blues. Lanegan also contributed his talents as a second vocalist for Queens of The Stone Age over the course of five celebrated albums. During his tenure with QOTSA, he won a BMI Award for co-writing the hit single “No One Knows.” In 2003, he joined forces with Afghan Whigs singer/songwriter Greg Dulli to form The Gutter Twins. Lanegan also worked with songwriters across the genre spectrum, from electronic artists like Moby, Bomb the Bass, Soulsavers and Unkle, through a series of stirring folk-rock duet albums with Isobel Campbell of Belle and Sebastian. Along the way, he wrote and published five books, including his memoir, Sing Backward and Weep in 2020.
Mark Lanegan will be missed by his friends and fans at BMI.