Wednesday May 17th 2017 will forever be known as a sad day in the music World. The “sudden and unexpected” death of Chris Cornell, the famed Soundgarden and Audioslave singer, has caused a shockwave across the industry. He was in the middle of a sold-out tour of the US, with six dates remaining before its finish on May 27 and had, in fact, performed just hours before his death in Detroit.
Born Christopher John Boyle on July 20th 1964, Cornell was best known for his work for Seattle rock band Soundgarden as its lead vocalist, primary songwriter and rhythm guitarist as well as lead vocalist for rock supergroup Audioslave. He was also the founder and frontman for Temple of the Dog, the tribute band dedicated to his late friend Andrew Wood (Malfunkshun, Mother Love Bone).
Chris Cornell was one the main architects of the grunge movement, forming Soundgarden alongside guitarist Kim Thayil and bassist Hiro Yamamoto in 1984. In 1988 they were the first grunge band to sign to a major label (A&M) and helped pave the way for the likes of Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains to break out into the mainstream.
In 2001, after the breakup of Soundgarden, Cornell formed the rock supergroup Audioslave with former Rage Against The Machine members, Tom Morello, Tim Commerford and Brad Wilk. The band were a platinum selling success, recording three albums, Audioslave (2002), Out of Exile (2005) and Revelations (2006) up until Cornell’s departure in early 2007.
Known for his four octave vocal range, he released four solo albums, Euphoria Morning (1999), Carry On (2007), Scream (2009), Higher Truth (2015) and the live album Songbook (2011). He received a Golden Globe nomination for his song “The Keeper” which appeared in the film Machine Gun Preacher and co-wrote and performed the theme song to the James Bond film Casino Royale (2006). “You Know My Name”. Cornell was consistently viewed as one of the greatest Rock singers in the World of all time.
He is survived by wife Vicky, daughters Lillian Jean and Toni and son, Christopher Nicholas. In 2012, he and Vicky created a foundation that works with vulnerable children facing poverty and homelessness.
52 is such a young age for anyone to pass away and today is truly a sad day for all of Chris’ family, friends and fans. Let us all join and commemorate his memory and his musical legacy by playing his music loud and proud and remembering one of the greatest singers of all time.
“When you miss somebody/You tell yourself a hundred thousand times/Nobody ever lives forever so you give it one more try/To wave goodbye, wave goodbye, oh” – Chris Cornell, Wave Goodbye