Elton John plays piano on new Alice In Chains song

Legend plays on tribute song to band's late lead singer

Elton John has recorded a piano part on the new Alice In Chains song 'Black Gives Way To Blue' – a tribute record to their late lead singer Layne Staley, who died of an overdose in 2002.

The song features on the band's forthcoming album, also named 'Black Gives Way To Blue', which is set for release in the US on September 29.

Band member Jerry Cantrell told the Associated Press that they managed to bag the collaboration because they were recording near the undisclosed studio that John was working in.

"We got a call from our studio manager saying that Elton wanted to talk to us," he explained. "We jumped in the car, left our lunches on the table and cruised back to the studio and walked into the studio where he was recording."

Cantrell added that he was still in slight shock about the coup. "I didn't think that would happen," he said. "He's a pretty busy guy doing his own thing. One of the most nerve-racking moments I had was actually making a suggestion to him. What do you say to Elton John? But he was really open to the process."

Cantrell said that far from being intimidating, the feted piano star was in fact very friendly. "He's a really warm person," he explained. "He got up and gave us a couple of hugs, and said, 'Well Jerry, I just wanted to tell you that I think it's a beautiful song. I really dig the sentiment of what it's about and who it's for and I just want to tell you that I'm going to play on the song'."

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