American singer Rufus Wainwright regrets spending years being jealous of Jeff Buckley's success because he enjoyed his company when the pair finally met - a month before Buckley died.

A chance encounter with Grace legend Buckley, who drowned in Memphis, Tennessee, in May 1997, changed Wainwright's mind and inspired him to write the song MEMPHIS SKYLINE.

The 31-year-old says, "I was really jealous of him and resentful of his success for a long time when I started out. So I began a couple-year-long hatred of Jeff Buckley.

"Years later, I actually met him in person and we hung out. This was after I had time to make my own record and have my own set of problems.

"I realised he was just a very, very delicate and sensitive and depressed guy who, if you blew on him, would crumble.

"I had a really lovely night hanging out with him. That night I realised just the futility of jealousy. And, of course, a month later he died. He would have been an amazing guy to sing with."

19/11/2004 19:28