Rock Blog: Mother Love Bone's 'Apple' Turns 26

July 19, 2016

It was 26 years ago today that Mother Love Bone released it's first and only full length album Apple. It's crazy to think how fast the time goes by, and even crazier to think of what could have been. 


Mother Love Bone took Seattle by storm in 1988, born from the creative minds of former Malfunkshun frontman Andrew Wood; former Green River members Bruce Fairweather, Stone Gossard, and Jeff Ament; and former Skin Yard and Ten Minute Warning drummer Greg Gilmore. Masterminds, right? Totally.


What's super wild is that between the members of this group, they are literally connected to just about every other band to ever come out of Seattle. In some ways, I feel like MLB was the glue that held it all together. The nucleus of all things Seattle grunge. 


Apple was actually slated for a much earlier release date in 1990, but a tragic heroin overdose by singer Andrew Wood landed him in a coma, and he passed away just a few days later. This devastating turn of events was the end of Mother Love Bone, when just a few months before, all of Seattle and much of the rock world was expecting such big things from this band.


When you paired the charisma and stage presence of Andrew Wood with the raw musicality of his band mates, this group could have done anything and everything. Lyrics that brought life to a screeching halt and made you think about things that really mattered. His voice is still capable of stopping me in my tracks when I hear it.


After Andrew's death, Chris Cornell reached out to Jeff Ament and Stone Gossard. You might recall that Cornell had been living with Wood. Cornell was inspired in many ways by his roommate, and he felt compelled to pay tribute to Andrew Wood through music. Initially they would plan to record a couple songs, but the collaboration spawned an entire album and a new band, called Temple of the Dog.  


I could go on and on... but I think you know where things went from there.Today, Seattle's musical family tree has incredibly long branches, hundreds of leaves, and some insanely deep roots. 


Personally, I can listen to Apple front to back, over an over, and never tire of the music. You may recall on Jolene's Last Ride in May 2015, where her last song on KISW was 'Chloe Dancer/Crown Of Thorns'. We have a deep rooted love for Mother Love Bone at The Rock Of Seattle. And today it feels right to celebrate this iconic Seattle album for what it means to us, thousands of Rockaholics, and musicians all over the globe.


Happy Birthday, Apple. We miss you, Andrew.


- Taryn Daly