I woke up this morning to what I would consider a WTF moment, I literally said what the fuck out loud, and startled my wife. I informed her that Chris Cornell had passed away. He was 52, and little details are known at the moment, outside of the fact that it took place in Detroit, where Soundgarden had perfomed.
— Chris Cornell (@chriscornell) May 18, 2017
People complained about 2016, and what a terrible year it was, as we lost a ton artists and entertainers, both from the music and film industries. I’ve discussed this topic with Mark Strigl on occasion, it almost always comes up when something like this takes place, and we have to come to terms with the fact that we’re all getting older, and a lot of our music idols are in a lot of cases older than us. As much as Lemmy passing away stung, it wasn’t unexpected, Cornell on the other hand, completely unexpected. As time goes on, there will be more events like this, it sucks, it is unfortunate, but it’s a part of life.
Cornell had such a distinct voice, as much as people may have disdain for the music that became popular at the beginning of the 90s, it was still an era where you could discern between the bigger bands, due to their singers sounding completely different. If you hear his voice, right off the bat you would know it wasn’t Kurt Cobain, Eddie Veder or Layne Staley. There was still a desire to try to be different amongst bands, and for the most part, that usually happens when you search out the first or second generation bands of any movement. Unfortunately, that is for the most part gone today. Another thing that is gone, and is pretty sad if you think about it, is the fact that three of the four singers I just mentioned are also gone.
Cornell had been touring a lot, as a solo artist, with Temple Of The Dog, he had reconciled with his former band mates in Audioslave, and there were rumors that he might do something with them at one point, and as mentioned above, he had played Detroit last night with Soundgarden, and was recording a new album with them. We’ll see if that, or any other material he may of been working on sees the light of day, or if the band decides to move forward in some capacity. My only request out of all of this, when bands start to pay homage to him, please remember that he recorded more than just Black Hole Sun. I mention this, because when Prince passed away, it seemed as if Purple Rain was the only track he ever recorded. Please remember the man, celebrate his work, and remember he had a brilliant career that started in 84 (Ultramega OK was released in 88), and went way beyond one hit.
So in the coming years when we celebrate Ronnie James Dio’s passing, we will now also celebrate the loss and life of another brilliant voice, Chris Cornell.
R.I.P. – D.E.P.