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10 Things You Might Not Know About Jane’s Addiction

Jane's Addictoin
Gustavo Caballero, Getty Images

Jane’s Addiction are so quintessentially ’90s that it’s sometimes hard to think of them in any other context. But they’re more than a ho-hum grunge band. They’ve put out some good stuff since the days where Jane said she was done with Sergio, and their story doesn’t end in the Clinton era. If you’re not up to speed on all of JA’s comings and goings, be sure to peep this list of 10 Things You Might Not Know About Jane’s Addiction and amaze your friends with your new-found knowledge.

Perry Farrell
Bob Berg, Getty Images

The singer’s name ain’t real, but it is really clever



Perry Farrell is not the lead singer’s real name. It’s the much less tantalizing Peretz Bernstein. (We imagine he has a doting, protective Jewish mother that always pushed him to have “one more helping” when he was growing up.) The name “Perry Farrell” is actually Will Shortz-esque wordplay for “peripheral.”


Robert Smith
Neilson Barnard, Getty Images

Dave Navarro’s guitar hero is a goth



The Cure’s Robert Smith is probably the last person you’d think of as an influence on Jane’s Addiction’s crazy-good riff monster Dave Navarro. But in a 1991 Guitar Player magazine interview, Dave dished, “Robert Smith from the Cure is a brilliant player. He’s no technical wizard, but who say’s you have to be to make great art?” No one says. Not even Jane.


Tim Whitby, Getty Images
Tim Whitby, Getty Images

They’re not really a ’90s band



Yep, Jane’s Addiction formed in 1985 and broke up in 1991. Technically speaking, that makes them an ’80s band, just like Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Bananarama and Kajagoogoo. We have to hand it to them, though. They owned the alt-rock era, and they checked out right before it all went downhill.



They spawned a great sequel



Porno for Pyros may be one of our favorite band names of all time, mainly because we have no effing idea what it means, and that means it’s cool. PfP is basically Perry Farrell and JA drummer Stephen Perkins’ post-breakup band. They produced one of our favorite moments of the ‘90s, hands down, with ‘Pets.’ Further proof JA is from the ’80s: They spawned a killer sequel, just like ‘Back to the Future’ and ‘Crocodile Dundee.’


Stephen Dunn, Getty Images

Flea was briefly in the band



Remember that sick Jane’s Addiction live album from 1997 ‘Kettle Whistle’? The one where Perry Farrell does that super-strung-out count-off in the beginning of ‘Jane Says?’ Of course you damn do. And at the time, the Red Hot Chili Peppers’ Flea subbed in for original Jane’s bassist Eric Avery.


Ed Yourdon, Flickr
Ed Yourdon, Flickr

A dog was briefly in the band, too



According to Dave Navarro, the band miked Perry Farrell’s dog in the studio and ran around to get the barking heard on ‘Been Caught Stealing.’ Easily the best canine cameo in rock history. You go, Fido!


Tim Boyle, Getty Images
Tim Boyle, Getty Images

They roll their own



When Diffuser compiled a list of Bizarre Tour Rider Requests, we were shocked — shocked, we say — to learn that JA requets “Two (2) Packs Zig Zag rolling papers (orange packaging!)” while on the road. Is it tobacco Jane’s are addicted to, or might they be puffing on something stronger? You’ll have to go backstage to find out.


Nat Dallinger, Hulton Archive
Nat Dallinger, Hulton Archive

They’re into PDA



In a 1991 article, Rolling Stone mentions that at one point in the band’s live show — during ‘Pig’s in Zen’ — Dave Navarro and bassist Eric Avery “tongue-kiss.” Apparently, they liked each other’s playing.


Robert Cianflone, Getty Images
Robert Cianflone, Getty Images

There was a real Jane, and she had addictions



In his book ‘Janes Addiction: In the Studio,’ Jake Brown notes that ‘Jane Says’ was about Perry Farrell’s ex-housemate Jane Bainter, who had a drug addiction. Might she also be the inspiration behind the band’s name? You betcha.


Carlo Allegri, Getty Images
Carlo Allegri, Getty Images

Lady-wise, Dave Navarro does OK



Rockers often (read: always) get into rocking for the chicks, and some do better than others. Dave Navarro is one of those guys. Case and point: He was married to ex-Playboy model and sickeningly hot Carmen Electra, and if Who Dated Who is to be believed, he’s been involved with Bobbie Brown, Kari Wuhrer, Jenna Jameson and lots of other blonde hotties we can only assume are porn stars. If you’ll excuse us, we’re gonna go practice our guitar…


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