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Greg Dulli pays tribute to the late Mark Lanegan: "He was a f**king pussycat and one of the greatest singers to ever sing"

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(Image credit: Greg Dulli - Pedro Becerra/Redferns / Mark Lanegan - Roberto Ricciuti/Redferns )

The Afghan Whigs Greg Dulli has opened up about his friendship with his former room-mate, the late Mark Lanegan

In a new interview with Rolling Stone, conducted as promotion for the new Afghan Whigs album How Do You Burn?, Dulli speaks warmly about Lanegan, who sings on two songs on the album, Jyja and Take Me There, and gave it its title.

Asked how he was handling Lanegan's passing, Dulli tells Rolling Stone, "That was a very sad day when I got that call."

"Mark was a brother to me," says Dulli. "I’ll tell you why I’m mostly sad about it is that I really feel like he had started to find his writer voice. He wrote a couple books in the last five years of his life, and even a novel, and a couple books of poetry, and he was really good. I was just watching him improve. I was watching him become this other thing and I really wanted to see where it would go.

"Mark was just a very complicated guy in a lot of ways, but in a lot of ways, very simple. Super talented, incredibly kind, one of the funniest people I’ve ever known.

"I really do miss even just the snarky texts we’d send to each other when something weird would happen," Dulli adds. "And like a lot of good friends, you have your secret language. And I miss the banter because he could just fucking crack me up. For someone with such an intimidating public persona, he was a fucking pussycat and really sweet, very thoughtful. And without question, he was one of the greatest singers to ever sing.

"I visit with him either through our text chain or listening to him. Some folks have sent me interviews and live clips of him that they love. Mark will never be far from me. He’s always very close to me, and it’s not anything that I’ll be over ever. But I can say that I’m glad he’s at least in a peaceful place now."

Dulli also reveals in the interview that he and Lanegan recorded two cover versions which have yet to see the light of day.

"We did a bizarre cover of California Dreamin' that never came out," he recalls, "and we also did Crossbones Style by Cat Power. I don’t know where they are, but we definitely recorded both of those songs."

The new Afghan Whigs album will be released on September 9 via Royal Cream/BMG.

Paul Brannigan
Contributing Editor, Louder

A music writer since 1993, formerly Editor of Kerrang! and Planet Rock magazine (RIP), Paul Brannigan is a Contributing Editor to Louder. Having previously written books on Lemmy, Dave Grohl (the Sunday Times best-seller This Is A Call) and Metallica (Birth School Metallica Death, co-authored with Ian Winwood), his Eddie Van Halen biography (Eruption in the UK, Unchained in the US) emerged in 2021. He has written for Rolling Stone, Mojo and Q, hung out with Fugazi at Dischord House, flown on Ozzy Osbourne's private jet, played Angus Young's Gibson SG, and interviewed everyone from Aerosmith and Beastie Boys to Young Gods and ZZ Top. Brannigan lives in North London and supports The Arsenal.