So, as I’m sure many of you have heard, Chris Cornell of Soundgarden passed away last night. Now, I will be the first to admit that when anyone in the rock industry dies, I am usually the first to say “doesn’t surprise me”. As shitty as that may sound, it comes with the territory. As an example, when I heard that they found Lane Staley of Alice in Chains dead from a overdose, those were my exact words- doesn’t surprise me. And I LOVED Alice in Chains. I just don’t typically have sympathy for people who choose to take a life of destruction with drugs. It’s just how I am.
The only rockstar I EVER had a hard time with their death was Dimebag Darrel of Pantera. The dude was absolutely amazing on the guitar and a huge influence on my own playing style back in my days of music. But at that time, it wasn’t that I had just lost a musical influence, it was the way he went. Now, Dime lived a life of excess like so many rockstars. I couldn’t tell you if he had any type of drug problem, but we all knew he drank like a fish. But this wasn’t what killed him. It was a mentally unstable man with a issue that Pantera was no more. It was so sad and I still love to listen to Dime’s work very much.
So, back to Chris Cornell. Now I will never have claimed to be a huge Soundgarden fan, but I can say without doubt that Chris Cornell had one of the greatest voices to ever bless our lives during this era in rock. Every time I heard that man sing, I was just floored at just how good he was. I remember the first concert I ever went to when I was 12 years old, Soundgarden opened up. I’ll never forget hearing Chris saying “we have a new album coming out here real soon called Bad Motor Finger and this is the single that will be released from that album” and they went right into Outshined. I loved it. It had a sound like I hadn’t heard before. Man they were so good live. And Chris’ voice just continued to IMPROVE over the years to the point of near perfection. Quite the opposite for many rockers.
I think the reason why this one is really getting me thinking is it is putting a date on me. I’m getting old. I know I have some good years left, but I can’t help but feel like everything I loved in my younger years is just fading away, and the death of Chris is just another reminder.
Rock on, wherever you may be Chris. You’ll be missed by many.