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Mike Starr Dead: 5 Facts on the Late Alice in Chains Bassist

Mar 9, 2011 – 10:14 AM
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Steven Hoffer

Steven Hoffer Contributor

Mike Starr, the original Alice in Chains bassist who suffered a long battle with heroin addiction, was found dead on Tuesday. He was 44.

Starr's body was discovered at a private residence in Salt Lake City, but the cause of death remains unknown. "There is nothing to indicate that this was foul play by another individual," said authorities, according to The Guardian.

Shortly after the band's 1992 breakthrough album, "Dirt," Starr broke off from Alice in Chains midtour and was replaced by Black Sabbath bassist Mike Inez. Years later Starr admitted that his reason for departing was a growing drug addiction.

Here are five facts on the late grunge bassist.

1. His death marks a second tragedy for Alice in Chains
In April 2002, Alice in Chains founding vocalist Layne Staley, who also suffered from a severe heroin addiction, died of an overdose at his home in Seattle.

2. He was "Celebrity Rehab" patient
In 2009, Starr appeared on the third season of VH1's "Celebrity Rehab With Dr. Drew" along with actor Tim Sizemore and Dennis Rodman. Despite the medical attention he received, Starr appeared to still be struggling with addiction.

The following video features several clips from the show:


3. He was arrested three weeks ago
Starr was arrested on suspicion of felony possession of a controlled substance on Feb. 17 in Salt Lake City. He was held on $20,000 bail.

4. He also played in Sun Red Sun
Sun Red Sun was a heavy metal supergroup between 1992 and 1993 and featured Starr along with drummer Bobby Rondinelli (Black Sabbath, Blue Oyster Cult), vocalist Ray Gillen (Badlands, Black Sabbath) and guitarist Al Romano (Joey Belladonna).

5. He will be missed by his fans and the rock community
Here are just a few of the comments from fellow musicians heartbroken by the loss:

Former Guns N' Roses guitarist Slash:

Really tragic news about Mike Star. RIP.less than a minute ago via Facebook


Former Guns N' Roses drummer Steven Adler:

R.I.P. Mike Starr !! Such a sad day! #aliceinchains #CelebrityRehab :( :(less than a minute ago via ÜberSocial


Motley Crue's Nikki Sixx:

RIP Mike Starr. Another fallen Soldier to addiction..:(less than a minute ago via TweetDeck



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