Category Archives: Temple of the Dog

Chris’ Week on Grunge Graveyard: Chris Cornell. A Life In 15 Songs

source: Classic Rock   20.07.2020

Chris Cornell: a life in 15 songs

 

 

 

 

Chris’ Week on Grunge Graveyard: Chester Bennington: “Chris Cornell’s contribution to music was unrivalled”

source: Metal Hammer May 2020

Chester Bennington: “Chris Cornell’s contribution to music was unrivalled”

In the summer of 2017, we spoke to Linkin Park’s Chester Bennington about the life and legacy of his friend, late Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell. For the first time, here is his tribute in full

When we heard the news that Chris Cornell had passed away on May 18, 2017, we started putting together a tribute to honour him, and reached out to his friend, Linkin Park singer Chester Bennington. Chester had sung at Chris’s funeral service at Hollywood Forever Cemetery on May 26, 2017, and though it was obviously a difficult time for him, he agreed to talk on the phone a week later. He was gracious, generous with his time and thanked us for “taking the time to write a nice piece on someone who’s contributed so much to so many people’s lives”.

Sadly, Chester took his own life two months later. The singer had also contributed greatly to so many people, and the metal community mourned another loss. Two-and-a-half years on, we revisit the conversation we had about his hero. What shines through is a firm friendship between two icons, bonded by their love for their families and their chosen career path.

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First of all, could you talk us through how you and Chris met?

Chester Bennington: “We’d done a tour in the US called Projekt Revolution, which was a semi-annual festival that Linkin Park used to put on. And we’d bring in tons of different acts, and Chris Cornell was on one of our tours [in 2008]. I think this was when we were touring [third album] Minutes To Midnight. Anyway, we met then. We got along really well right away.

“I grew up listening to Soundgarden, Alice in Chains, Nirvana. I don’t think any music scene influenced me as much as the scene that came out of Seattle. There was so much great music that came out of Seattle at that time. So it was really cool for me to be out there with one of my heroes, and we got along really well. Vicky [Cornell] and my wife, Talinda – they became best friends right away. Every day they’d be hanging out, and we got really close over that tour. Our friendship really grew during that time.”

How did it develop from there? It sounds like it became more than just a touring buddies thing quite quickly

“I don’t know if you’ve ever had this experience, but sometimes you meet somebody and it’s like you’ve known them forever. And that was really the case between our families. After that tour, we stayed in touch and that developed into Chris and Vicky asking me to be the godfather of their son, Christopher. One of my favourite memories of our friendship was the baptism and the christening and taking on that promise to the family. That was really great. Whenever they were in town we would try to connect – sometimes it was difficult because we’re all so busy. Chris and I were similar in many ways in that we had a lot of dear friends but we didn’t necessarily see them all the time, because our personal lives are so busy, and our dedication to our families is so strong.”

I guess the fact that your families came together so quickly, not just you and Chris personally, made that easier?

“Yeah, I think if it was just me and Chris talking, hanging out, you know, we would be good acquaintances. But the friendship between our wives, you add that into the mix and things escalate a little bit more! Ha ha ha! In terms of closeness, in terms of intimacy, it was really quite special. Our friendship grew beyond just respecting each other for what we do musically.”

How would you describe what Chris was like offstage?

“Chris was a great father, really dedicated to his family, loved his kids more than anything. Really quiet. When you got him alone, he was really talkative. Get him into an intimate setting and a lot of personality comes out. Outside of that, pretty quiet and reserved. Really soft-spoken and very gentle.”

As someone who grew up as a fan of his music, I guess you must have had a strong perception of Chris. How was he compared to how you’d imagined him before you started spending time together?

“Luckily, my experiences have been more positive than negative, but I’ve had the opportunity to perform with a lot of the people that I really admired growing up, and who had a lot of influence on me. And 90% of the time it’s been really wonderful, and friendships have developed. The other 10% of the time it doesn’t go so well and you kinda go, ‘Man, I wish I never met that person!’ Ha ha ha! It ruins the whole thing! For me, at least. Like, ‘Oh, man. I met that guy from that band I love and he was kind of a douche. I wish I’d never met him so I could still listen to the music.’

“So meeting Chris was really… it’s not like everybody gets the opportunity to do those things. And that’s probably what I’ve enjoyed the most in the success of Linkin Park is being able to go on tour with a lot of these guys. I do a lot of all-star band stuff; I’ve played gigs with Alice in Chains, I’ve done shows with Jane’s Addiction, I’ve done shows with Stone Temple Pilots, I’ve done shows with Chris Cornell. I’ve had the opportunity to play with my favourite band, Metallica. It’s just been an honour. And so Chris was definitely a highlight. And in terms of his ability to perform, the guy is in the top three male vocalists of all time. Up there with Jeff Buckley and Jimmy Gnecco from Ours.”

What do you think was so unique about Chris as a performer? 

“Obviously his vocal range is incredible. The sheer power. But I think it’s his songwriting that really stands out – the time signatures he uses, the chord progressions. It’s a delicate balance to get technical and smart with the way you play. Especially with Soundgarden – their rhythm section was incredible. The progressions that they played were really complicated, but they had a groove. And I think that’s something that’s super, super difficult to pull off.”

And as a performer, did you take anything from him from touring together and getting to see him play every night? 

“When you watch greatness, you don’t need to be convinced. You just watch and go, ‘Wow.’ I’m getting goosebumps now just thinking about it. And so when you see someone who is truly talented and gifted do what they do, and love doing it, it’s so special. When we were touring on that Projekt Revolution tour, I got to go out and sing [Temple Of The Dog’s] Hunger Strike with Chris. And Eddie Vedder is a huge influence on me too, and that was one of my favourite songs. I loved hearing those two guys do that song, so when he asked me to do it I said, ‘OK, I’ll come out and sing Eddie’s parts.’ He’s like, ‘Nah man, you’re gonna hit the high ones.’ I was like, ‘Crap!’ Ha ha ha! ‘Oh, no!’

“There are two times I’ve been super-nervous about singing with someone. One was with Paul McCartney during the Grammys, and I had to sing high harmonies on Yesterday. You can’t really screw that up! And then doing Hunger Strike with Chris, and I had to hit the really high parts. The best compliment I ever got was from Chris. After we did it, he laughed and said, ‘Dude – you’re not supposed to be able to do that, man! I made you sing that on purpose so you wouldn’t do it as well!’ So that was a huge compliment to me. It’s kinda funny but my wife would always tease me because when Chris and I would do that song, we would always stare at each other. She’d be like, ‘Look at you guys, staring at each other onstage all night!’ That was just because of my admiration for him as a person and as a performer, and the friendship we were developing. It was just really special, it was a special time.”

What’s your fondest memory of Chris?

“Definitely the times we had just hanging out – which were very few and far between. Sitting by the pool with the kids, just kinda talking. Obviously, the christening of his son, Christopher, and being invited into the family. That was really special.”

You sang at Chris’s funeral. How did that come about? Were you asked to do that, or was it something that you put yourself forward to be involved in?

“I’m not sure exactly how the idea came up, I was just asked to sing. There was talk of maybe 10 people speaking, and it came up that maybe it might be good for someone to come in and do something musical to split up the eulogies. And so I was asked to sing, and of course I knew it would be tough. I wanted to make sure it was tasteful, and it was the right song. But Vicky wanted me to do it, so I did it. It was really up to her. She obviously said yes, but I didn’t ask – I was asked to perform. I’m not sure who brought up the idea.

“So I just prayed on it a little bit. I said, ‘Chris – I know you’re up there, and I wanna make this special. I want it to be the right song. Put one in my head, give me the little tingly feeling. Give me something, y’know?’ And I knew from our conversations that he’d been friends with Jeff Buckley and they were close, so I felt that Hallelujah would be a good song. It’s my favourite song of all time – I think it’s the best song that’s ever been written – and of all the versions that have been done, Jeff Buckley’s is my favourite. So that was a nice tie, you know, somebody that Chris was close to. Another one of my favourite vocalists. And so I did that song, and I spoke with Lily, his daughter, and apparently it was something they used to sing together. Lily and [Chris’s other daughter] Toni and Chris would sing together. I didn’t know that until after I’d performed it, but it turned out to be a very special moment. I’m just really honoured that I was able to participate in a positive way.”

It’s a wonderful song, but it’s so heart- breaking. We can only imagine what it must’ve been like to sing a song like that at such a sensitive occasion.

“It was tough. I believe everything is random in this universe, but that there are no accidents. That’s what I believe. We were set to play Jimmy Kimmel a few days beforehand, and we switched things up. We were going to play Heavy on Jimmy Kimmel that night, but Chris had just passed so we felt like dedicating One More Light to him would be appropriate. I got to sing through that a few times, break down, cry a little bit, pull myself together. And I got to run through that experience a little bit, so I felt like that prepared me for the funeral. So I was able to keep it together pretty well, but it was tough.”

What do you think Chris’s legacy will be? 

“His legacy are his children and his wife. His family will be his legacy. I think, musically, he stands without question as being one of the greatest influences of our time, from one of the greatest bands of all time. His contribution to music is unrivalled. Obviously there’s tons of great musicians who contribute to the history of music, but I think Soundgarden in particular – as well as Chris on his own – will be recognised as being among the greats. In terms of his music, I think that’s undeniable. In terms of him as a person, who he was as a father, as a husband, family man, friend – he was a great person, and a good person. And I think his kids will grow up to do special things with their lives.

 

Happy Birthday Chris!

Happy birthday to Chris Cornell who was born on this day in 1964! I’ll be posting a song or an article every day this week to celebrate his life and legacy, this will be Chris’ Week on Grunge Graveyard.

Chris Cornell – Unplugged In Sweden (Full Album)

Tracklist:

01) Doesn’t Remind Me (Audioslave) 1:03

02) Like A Stone (Audioslave) 5:31

03) Wide Awake (Audioslave) 10:17

04) Fell On Black Days (Soundgarden) 14:19

05) Be Yourself (Audioslave) 18:58

06) Billie Jean (Michael Jackson Cover) 23:21

07) Original Fire (Audioslave) 27:49

08) Redemption Song (Bob Marley Cover) 31:49

09) Peace,Love And Understanding (Elvis Costello Cover) 35:18

10) All Night Thing (Temple Of The Dog) 37:40

11) Black Hole Sun (Soundgarden) 41:37

12) Call Me A Dog (Temple Of The Dog) 47:24

13) Thank You (Led Zeppelin Cover) 52:11

Musicares Honors Mike McCready at Seattle’s Showbox with Historic Night of Music

source: Northwest Music Scene May 11, 2018

Musicares honors Mike McCready at Seattle’s Showbox with historic night of music

Every year Musicares, a part of the Grammy Foundation that helps people in the music industry with addiction and other medical resources, puts on a special music event and for the first time, Seattle was the chosen spot. The 2018 version was organized to not only pay homage to one of the greatest music cities on the planet but to honor one of its biggest supporters, Mike McCready. With Mike’s history with recovery, Musicares and of course Seattle, the night that was planned out couldn’t be anything but legendary.

The first to take the stage was Senior Director of Musicares Erica Krusen, explaining how important it was to do this show in Seattle. (she herself has a huge connection to Seattle via Pearl Jam) After the roll call of generous sponsors was finished up, it was time for some music and the first all-star grouping of the night of McCready, Danny Newcomb, Duff McKagan, Mark Arm and Barrett Martin started things off with a bang. Spread out across a stage packed full of gear, they fired off a blistering version of “Search and Destroy” by The Stooges. After the last note was played, Newcomb exited, leaving the four remaining rock stars to play “TV Eye” also by The Stooges, much like they did a few years ago on top of the Pike Place Market sign.

Thunderous applause greeted the end of The Stooges portion of the night, giving way to what is lovingly known in the northwest as Flight to Mars. The usual suspects came out for this one, with Mike wearing his trademark white flying Vee. As Paul Passarelli, Gary Westlake, Tim DiJulio, McCready and Mike Musburger played the first few notes of Thin Lizzy‘s “Cowboy Song” from the 1976 album, Jailbreak, the crowd had a sense they were in for something good. Although most were seated you could feel the energy somehow rising with Passarelli delivering the kind of epic vocal performances he’s known for, with the rest of the members bringing their “A” games as well. The twin-guitar attack of McCready and “Rock Tim” DiJulio completely destroyed the legendary solos in that song as they traded licks and played off of each other throughout. With zero pause, the band launched right into UFO’s “Lights Out,” once again knocking it out of the park with this lineup of friends finishing off the FTM portion of the show with one of the greatest rock songs ever written, “Love to Love” from UFO‘s 1977 album, Lights Out. If you’ve ever seen FTM, then you know how much this band puts into making these songs special, and this performance at the Showbox left most people with jaws on the floor, again. Especially those that had never previously experienced Flight to Mars.

After that epic display, a special video was shown on the screen behind the stage with all four members of Seattle darlings Thunderpussy telling Mike how much they love him and wishing they could have been there but they are on tour and the video would have to suffice. Mike clearly was moved by their message and playful display!

Next up were a few auction items, a 2014 Gibson Les Paul signed by all the members of Pearl Jam and a one of a kind Nixon watch crafted from a guitar strap from the late Chris Cornell. (still hard to type that) Those priceless items brought in a whopping $16K and $15.5K respectively and after Chris Adams had taken the last bid, he welcomed Musicares Chair Michael McDonald to the stage, who explained a bit of his personal recovery story, before asking for donations to directly help others suffering from addiction. The Seattle crowd was generous with countless people standing up with their glowsticks wanting to contribute financially. After some light-hearted banter from northwest native Joel McHale, the next set of music was ready to take over the sold-out venue.

Kim Virant, Nancy Wilson, Chad Smith, Josh Klinghoffer, Duff, Mike would play “Dead Flowers” from The Rolling Stones with Kim and Nancy sharing a mic for what turned out to be another righteous display of musicianship. As Kim sang to Mike with her arms on his shoulders, you could feel the love for this guy in the room, from the band members, to every table in the Showbox. A quick lineup change would have Barrett taking over on drums, with Nancy and Kim exiting, while Star Anna came out. The first few unmistakable notes of Mad Season‘s “River of Deceit” brought another “oh wow” moment to a night full of them. Star made it her own with a hauntingly beautiful vocal performance featuring Duff on backing vocals.

Another highlight of the evening came when Nancy Wilson wandered back out with Ben Smith and Ryan Waters, joined by Duff and Mike for a mind-blowing performance of Pink Floyd‘s  “Comfortably Numb,” which found McCready absolutely owning the universe on the guitar solos. They quickly followed that up with Heart‘s “Even It Up” with Wilson singing, providing even more northwest music epicness on that one.

Part of the reason for this gathering of stars was to present Mike with the Stevie Ray Vaughan award from Musicares. The presenter, Duff McKagan, lovingly explained how important McCready, his friend of 40 years, is to him and the world in general. After accepting the award, McCready went down a partial list of the people in the northwest we have lost and then honored Musicares themselves for the work they do to help prevent that from happening again.

Guitarist Mike McCready of Pearl Jam, Nancy Wilson of Heart and Duff McKagan of Guns and Roses perform on stage during the MusiCares Concert For Recovery presented by Amazon Music at the Showbox on May 10, 2018 in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Mat Hayward/WireImage)

Chris Cornell – From Baby to 52 Year Old

The Anniversary of Chris’ Death

It is the 3rd anniversary of Chris Cornell’s death today.

Chris Cornell – Like a Stone Acoustic Live (Unplugged Sessions @ AOL)

Toni Cornell Sings “Hunger Strike” During LiveXLive’s Music Lives

Toni Cornell performed an emotional tribute to her late father, Chris Cornell, singing “Hunger Strike” by Temple of the Dog during LiveXLive’s Music Lives on April 18, 2020. Intro by Matt Pinfield.

Chris Cornell Posthumously Wins Grammy for Best Recording Package

source: Daily Mail

Chris Cornell won a posthumous award at the Grammy Awards in Los Angeles on Sunday.

The Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman was recognized in the Best Recording Package category for his career-spanning box-set compilation that dropped in November of 2018, a year-and-a-half after his passing at the age of 52.

Pearl Jam bassist Jeff Ament, his brother Barry Ament and Joe Spix, who contributed artwork to the box-set, accepted the award in Cornell’s honor.

Both Cornell’s and Soundgarden’s Twitter accounts tweeted out responses.

‘Congratulations Jeff & Barry Ament, thank you for this amazing work of art, your dedication & love for Chris,’ the Soundgarden tweet began.

‘Thank you @UMG & everyone who helped create such a beautiful work of art, in loving memory of Chris. He would be so proud -VC.’

‘Chris would be so proud! Thank you for your incredible work, dedication & loud love-VC #barryament #jeffament #chriscornellforever #Grammys2020,’ it read on the Black Hole Sun singer’s solo page. The message was tagged VC, the initials of Chris’ widow Vicky.

Along with his work with Soundgarden and Audioslave, the compilation album includes songs from his solo releases and Temple Of The Dog, which featured Jeff Ament and some of his Pearl Jam bandmates.

The super deluxe box-set has 64 tracks, including 10 unreleased songs.

One of the new tunes, When Bad Does Good, won a Grammy for Best Rock Performance at the 2019 Grammy Awards.

In a statement, Cornell’s widow Vicky said that she felt ‘we needed to create a special collection to represent all of him – the friend, husband and father, the risk taker and innovator, the poet and artist.’

She added, ‘His soaring vocals found their way into the hearts and souls of so many. His voice was his vision and his words were his peace. This album is for his fans.’

Born and raised in Seattle, Cornell struggled with depression and substance abuse for much of his life.

He has widely been considered among the greatest rock singers of all time.

Happy Birthday Chris!

It was an anniversary of Chris Cornell’s birth yesterday, to celebrate it let me post a video of his duet with Cat Stevens playing ‘Wild World’

The Anniversary of Chris’ Death

It is the 2nd anniversary of Chris Cornell’s death today so I am posting some rare treasures from his long career. This time Chris sings the songs of other artists and the list is really impressive.

1. Beatles 0:00 2. Michael Jackson 6:35 3. Creedence 10:40 4. Pearl Jam 13:40 5. Prince 17:40 6. Otis Redding 22:39 7. Whitney Houston 26:20 8. Mad Season 31:12 9. Eagles 36:00 10. Skynyrd 40:50 11. Mother Love Bone 43:32 12. Springsteen 48:24 13. Sabbath 54:27 14. Metallica 1:01:48 15. Bob Marley 1:06:04 16. Elvis Costello 1:09:30 17. John Lennon 1:11:39 Bonus 18. Pearl Jam/ Nirvana 1:15:34