Mike Starr, popular as the bassist of the grunge band 'Alice in Chains', was 44 when he was found dead in a Salt Lake City house on March 8, 2011.
After a long battle with drugs, Starr died nine years after the Seattle band's singer Layne Staley, died At 34 in April 2011. Staley overdosed on a mixture of heroin and cocaine, or 'speedball.'
The surviving members of Alice In Chains,Jerry Cantrell and Sean Kinney, have urged for privacy to mourn Starr's death.
Jerry and Sean are mourning the loss of their friend and ask that the media respect their privacy - and the privacy of the Starr family - during this difficult time. Their thoughts & prayers are with the Starr family, said a statement on the official Alice in Chains website.
He recently hit the limelight in 2009 when his battle with drugs was chronicled on the reality TV show 'Celebrity Rehab.' The bassist's appearance in the reality TV show came on the back of the success of 'Black Gives Way to Blue', the comeback album, remarkably impressive as it featured a new vocalist, William DuVall, replacing the beloved Staley.
Starr, Cantrell and Kinney have known each other and played with each other since the launch pad 'Diamond Lie' days. Once they found Staley, the band was named 'Alice in Chains.'
Starr recorded two hugely popular albums 'Facelift' and 'Dirt' with 'Alice In Chains.' After the tour with Ozzy, the bassist left the band while touring 'Dirt' in 1993. While the press releases said amicable departure, rigors of touring, wanted more time with his family, the rumors involved drug use, and being thrown out of the band for having an affair with Jerry's girlfriend. The real reason became clear in 2009's 'Celebrity Rehab': Starr abandoned the tour due to his growing addiction to drugs.
While 'Dirt' certainly managed to kick up a storm, it was the debut album of the band that was packed with the true grit of 'Alice in Chains' as the band channeled through heavy metal to grunge. 'Facelift' introduced Alice in Chains to the college rock and classic rock radio scenes. Attributed to the single 'Man in the Box,' the album went gold. Facelift was preceded by a single EP 'We Die Young.'
The band brought out EP 'Jar of Flies' in 1994 and a self-titled album in 1995. Apparantly hit by Starr's leaving in between the 'Dirt' tour, Alice in Chain did not back these albums up with tours. 'Dirt' was preceded by a lesser known album, 'Sap'.
The murky middle part came in when Starr nodded to 'Celebrity Rehab'. Both Jerry and Sean had criticized the show but only wished the best for Starr.
Days ahead of his death on Feb. 18, 2011, Starr was arrested and booked on suspicion of felony possession of a controlled substance in Salt Lake City, Utah.
In the afternoon of March 8, 2011, Mike was found dead in Salt Lake City. The cause of death of one of the best bassists the rock history has seen still remains a mystery.