Tag Archives: eddie vedder

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.

———–

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.

 

Highway to Hell – Bruce Springsteen (w Eddie Vedder& Tom Morello)

Highway to Hell – Bruce Springsteen (w Eddie Vedder & Tom Morello) – Brisbane Ent Centre – 26-2-2014

Seattle Musicians Talk About ‘Singles’ Movie On The 25th Anniversary Of Its Release

source: an archive article in Alternative Nation from May 16, 2017

Pearl Jam, Alice In Chains & Soundgarden Members Unite For Incredible Grunge Video

A new video has been released the commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Singles soundtrack, featuring Pearl Jam, Soundgarden, Alice In Chains, Screaming Trees, and Heart members. You can watch the video following the transcribed comments.

“I just remember thinking, ‘Cameron’s magic,’” Alice In Chains drummer Sean Kinney recalls. “‘You’re gonna go to Seattle and make a movie about stuff that just a small sect of people know?’ At the time, there was no ‘the grunge.’”

Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell said, “Because the film was conceived and shot before the international explosion of all of the bands, that ended up being kind of a key factor in what was referred to as the Seattle scene, and the Seattle movement, and then the Grunge movement. Because there was this one thing called the Singles movie, where if you saw it, you were exposed to it.”

Alice In Chains singer/guitarist Jerry Cantrell remembered, “It was a big deal man, it really was. For as small and humbly as we all started, to be that involved in a major film, and to have it be with a guy who you’re friendly with, and cares about music as much as he does. Things took off really quickly.”

“It bottles a moment in time,” Screaming Trees drummer Barrett Martin adds of the soundtrack.

Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready said, “It was an exciting time to be here, and that was just another part of it. Like oh, and then there’s a movie, it was surreal.”

Heart’s Nancy Wilson, “You know when it’s Eddie Vedder, you know when it’s Alice In Chains with their great dissonant harmonies, you know Soundgarden. It’s the Seattle sound (laughs).”

Watch the video below via Rolling Stone.

Watch Soundgarden, Pearl Jam, Alice in Chains Members Look Back on ‘Singles’

US President Considered Addressing Nation After Kurt Cobain’s Death

source: The Music

American President Bill Clinton allegedly took Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder to one side to ask him whether he should address the nation following the death of Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain.

In an extract from Keith Cameron’s book Mudhoney: The Sound And The Fury From Seattle, which has been published on Spin, Mudhoney say that during a tour where they were supporting Pearl Jam the two bands were invited to the White House one day – the day after Kurt Cobain’s death.

After Mudhoney bassist Matt Lukin smoked a joint on the way to the White House (and freaked out a bit when he got there) Cameron retells the following:

Soon after arriving at the White House, the two bands got separated by officials. Pearl Jam were ushered into the Oval Office to meet Bill Clinton, which hadn’t been part of the original plan—apparently, the president wanted to seek advice on whether he should address the nation in the wake of Cobain’s suicide.

While the matter of apparent national importance was being discussed, Cameron says:

Mudhoney, meanwhile, were assigned a Secret Service agent who gave them a behind-the-scenes tour of the White House. As they were ushered past the velvet ropes, tourists waiting in line for a regular tour ran up and asked for autographs.

“Obviously word had got around that Pearl Jam was in the House, but these old ladies didn’t know what Pearl Jam looked like,” says [drummer Dan] Peters. “We’re saying, ‘Yeah, we’re not Pearl Jam.’ And they were like, ‘Ha ha! Just give us your autograph.’ Still, it was a nice diversion from the whole Kurt-blowing-his-head-off thing.”

The two bands’ paths eventually crossed in the White House Press Room, where [vocalist Mark] Arm and Vedder had their picture taken shaking hands over the presidential seal on the podium.

“It was a great private tour,” says [guitarist Steve] Turner. “The Secret Service guy was telling us about the different people that have been killed on the White House lawn. There was one guy dressed in full ninja gear who thought he was invisible, coming across the lawn. They finally just shot him. I don’t recall hearing about that on the news! It was a surreal day. I remember being almost troubled that the President of the United States of America is taking the time to meet Eddie Vedder. Like, that’s top of today’s agenda? Really?!”

The book, released later this month in America, was released last year in Australia through Omnibus Press.

Three Pearl Jam Drummers Unite In Surreal Photos

source: Alternative Nation

Three Pearl Jam Drummers Unite In Surreal Photos

Matt Cameron was photographed backstage at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame with former Pearl Jam drummers Dave Krusen and Jack Irons. Krusen was part of the band’s inducted Hall of Fame lineup, and while Irons wasn’t he was invited by his close friend Eddie Vedder to attend. Krusen drummed on Ten, while Irons drummed on No Code and Yield. Below this photo is another awesome Krusen backstage photo!

Jack Irons tweeted, “Very happy to have been in attendance for Rock Hall 2017!! Nothing but love for my friends in Pearl Jam and the whole PJ organization!”

Dave Krusen also shared a backstage photo of himself and his family with the ‘boss’ Eddie Vedder. Krusen wrote, “Family photo with the boss- thanks for a great night everybody!”

Pearl Jam drummer Matt Cameron commented on the controversy surrounding former Pearl Jam drummer Dave Abbruzzese’s exclusion from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in a late March interview with Rockol. Keep in mind the interview was published in Italian, so these are translated quotes and Cameron may have used different verbiage in his answers.

The reporter asked, “Does Pearl Jam’s entry into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame have a special meaning for you? And how many drummers will be present?”

Cameron responded, “Things are out of my control, I have no idea what will happen with the drummers. I just know that the ones who enter the Hall of Fame will be me and Dave Krusen. It is an honor. It will be fun.”

When asked about a new Pearl Jam album, Cameron said, “For now the only plan is to gather and write new songs.”

PearlJamOnLine.it
@PearlJamOnLine

One photo, three drummers, six hands.

2017.

, @DaveKrusen, MFC. #PearlJam #PearlJam2017

‘Hunger Strike’ by Temple of the Dog

Apologies for long silence, harsh reality prevented me from posting on all my blogs. But I am back and getting ready for July 20th.

Eddie Vedder and Mike McCready with Keith Richards

The photo is from the page Grunge Pictures, I strongly recommend it to all the grunge lovers.

Eddie Vedder and Roger Waters in ‘Comfortably Numb’

from Rolling Stone

Eddie Vedder made a surprise appearance during Roger Waters‘ Sunday night concert in Chicago, with the singer appearing on “Comfortably Numb.” The Wall classic has become a live staple for Pearl Jam in recent years.

The performance started with no mention of Vedder’s presence. However, when the first chorus arrived, Vedder quietly snuck out from backstage, took his place in front of the microphone and handled the lines originally sung by David Gilmour.

Vedder stuck around to handle both choruses, assist on acoustic guitar during the song’s climactic outro and take a curtain call with Waters and his band.

The surprise performance marked the first time in nearly five years that the Pearl Jam singer and the Pink Floyd bassist played “Comfortably Numb” together: The two previously teamed on the track at the 12:12:12 Hurricane Sandy benefit concert at Madison Square Garden.

Tributes To Chris Cornell Part 1: Eddie Vedder, Guns’N’Roses and Metallica

EDDIE VEDDER

The first concert of his solo tour that began in Amsterdam was heavily influenced by Chris Cornell’s death. Here is the coverage of Consequence of Sound

Eddie Vedder kicked off a European solo tour in Amsterdam on Saturday night. Reeling from the death of his longtime friend and collaborator Chris Cornell, the performance was said to be an emotional one, with Vedder playing several songs in tribute to the Soundgarden singer.

In his opening performance of Pearl Jam’s “Long Road”, Vedder changed the lyrics to “Without you/ something is missing.” A cover of Cat Stevens’ “Trouble” followed. Vedder than played Pearl Jam’s “Sometimes” during which he cried out, “Where were you, dear God?” Other notable performances included his own composition “Without You”, a cover of Neil Young’s “The Needle and the Damage Done” (a song about heroin addiction), and Pearl Jam’s “Immortality”. He opened the first encore with a cover of Fugazi’s “I’m So Tired”, which features lyrics like, “Out here/ Barely see my breath/ Surrounded by jealousy and death/ I can’t be reached/ Only had one call/ Dragged underneath Separate from you all/ You all.”

At one point during the concert, a fan yelled out, “I love you!”, to which Vedder responded, “Thank you. I need it – we all need it. I’m thinking of a lot of people tonight. And some in particular and their families. And I just know that healing takes time, if it ever happens. It takes time, and that means you have to start somewhere. So let it be music. Let it be love and togetherness. And let it be Amsterdam.”

A PearlJam.com member named Electro_UK who attended the show, posted the following account to the band’s message board,

“The show was pretty much entirely about Chris without directly mentioning him. It was clear Eddie couldn’t bring himself to talk about it head on. He spoke a little how the healing process can start with music and made numerous references to how sad he was and how much he and his friends were struggling.

Frankly it is the bravest performance I have ever seen. At times it seemed like he was a word or two away from breaking into tears. He mumbled more than usual, he violently stamped into the floor on Immortality and others and after ‘The End’ I thought he was ready to just walk off and not play anymore. There were funny moments and he picked up in the second half. You could hear the crowd emotionally gasp when Light Years started. On the outro to Sometimes he cried out ‘Where were you, dear God?’ It was heart breaking.”

Guns’n’Roses

Here is the coverage by Consequence of Sound

Guns N’ Roses kicked off their 2017 summer tour at Slane Castle in Ireland on Saturday. Near the middle of the set, after ripping through a bunch of their greatest hits, the band took a moment to honor Chris Cornell with a cover of Soundgarden’s “Black Hole Sun”. Watch fan-shot footage below.

“This one’s for you Chris,” the band tweeted prior to the performance.

This one’s for you Chris.
Black Hole Sun.
Live from Slane, Ireland.#GNRinSlane

— Guns N’ Roses (@gunsnroses) May 27, 2017

In 2015, GNR bassist Duff McKagan collaborated with Cornell as part of a Mad Season reunion performance staged by surviving members Mike McCready and Barrett Martin and also featuring the Seattle Symphony Orchestra.

Metallica

Again the coverage of Consequence of Sound

Metallica are currently on one of the most anticipated tours of the season as they support their latest album, Hardwired…to Self-Destruct. During a concert near Boston last Friday, however, the metal rockers took time out of their set to remember fallen grunge legend Chris Cornell.

As Metallica were wrapping up a performance of “Halo on Fire,” bassist Robert Trujillo launched into a solo bass version of Soundgarden classic “Black Hole Sun”. Though brief, Trujillo knocked it out with both admirable focus and reverence. Listen to it on Metallica’s Instagram account.

to be continued…

andy and chris