singer Chris Cornell
died one year ago today (May 18th) at the age of 52. The legendary musician was in Detroit where he had performed with Soundgarden at the Fox Theatre earlier in the evening. After the show, Cornell returned to his hotel room at the MGM Grand Detroit, but was found unresponsive approximately an hour later on the bathroom floor by his bodyguard, who has been asked to check on him by Cornell's wife Vicky. A police report indicated that the bodyguard, Martin Kirsten
, was the last person to see Cornell alive. Kirsten had worked on Cornell's computer for a bit and gave him two doses of the prescription anti-anxiety medicine, Ativan.
At 11:35 p.m., Cornell was on the phone with his wife. Then at 12:15 a.m., concerned because he was slurring his words and sounded groggy, she called and asked Kirsten to go check on her husband. Kirsten found the room door locked, kicked in the door and discovered his boss on the bathroom floor with an exercise band around his neck. The official report indicated that the 52-year-old singer died as a result of "suicide by hanging." A toxicology report issued three weeks after his death indicated that Cornell had a number of prescription drugs in his system at the time of his death, but that the "drugs did not contribute to the cause of death." Vicky Cornell has disputed the medical examiner's findings ever since they were issued, suggesting that the Ativan in Chris' system impaired his judgment. It has not been proven whether the amount Chris took affected his actions or thoughts. Chris was cremated on May 23rd and a funeral service was held on May 26th at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles. Celebrities in attendance included Lars Ulrich and James Hetfield of Metallica, Dave Grohl of Foo Fighters, Nirvana's Krist Novoselic, Dave Navarro of Jane's Addiction, Chester Bennington and Brad Delson of Linkin Park, Joe Walsh, Courtney Love, Bush's Gavin Rossdale, Alice In Chains' Jerry Cantrell, members of Soundgarden, Audioslave and Pearl Jam, Pharrell Williams, James Franco, Brad Pitt, Jeremy Renner, Christian Bale, Josh Brolin and more.
- Bennington -- who would take his own life just two months later, on what would have been Chris' birthday -- performed Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" for the gathering, while eulogies were given by Matt Cameron and Kim Thayil of Soundgarden, Pearl Jam's Jeff Ament, Audioslave's Tom Morello, Brolin, Bennington and Delson, and others.
CHRIS CORNELL: HIS HISTORY AND LEGACY
Soundgarden had been working on material for its seventh studio album at the time of Chris' death and had tentatively planned to enter the studio in late 2017. The band reunited in 2010 after a 13-year hiatus, first touring and then writing and recording King Animal, its first new studio LP in 16 years. In addition to Soundgarden, Cornell sang with Audioslave and Temple Of The Dog, while also recording four solo studio albums and one live set on his own. He formed Soundgarden in 1984 with guitarist Kim Thayil and bassist Hiro Yamamoto, originally playing drums in addition to singing until drummer Matt Cameron joined the lineup. Soundgarden became one of the first and most successful bands to emerge from the Seattle scene, alongside friends and contemporaries Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Alice In Chains. The band first broke through to rock radio with its 1991 third album, Badmotorfinger, which featured the singles "Outshined," "Rusty Cage" and "Jesus Christ Pose." That paved the way for 1994's five-million-selling Superunknown, which included "Black Hole Sun," "My Wave," "Spoonman" and "Fell On Black Days." Soundgarden split up in 1997 due to tensions within the band, with Cornell first starting a solo career than teaming in 2001 with the instrumental members of Rage Against The Machine to launch Audioslave. That band recorded three studio albums before splitting in 2007. Cornell also collaborated in 1990 with members of what would become Pearl Jam to form Temple Of The Dog, making a self-titled album in 1991 in tribute to late Mother Love Bone frontman Andrew Wood. Temple Of The Dog reunited in 2016 for a short five-date tour, its first ever. Cornell also contributed solo songs to a number of films, including Great Expectations, Machine Gun Preacher, 12 Years A Slave and the recent The Promise. He also sang the theme song, "You Know My Name," to the 2008 James Bond adventure Casino Royale. Cornell and his wife also started the Chris and Vicky Cornell Foundation to support children facing challenges, including homelessness, poverty, abuse and neglect. He is survived by Vicky and three children, a daughter named Toni, a son named Christopher and a daughter named Lillian from his previous marriage to former Soundgarden manager Susan Silver.
CHRIS CORNELL IN HIS OWN WORDS Cornell on how Soundgarden's songwriting has always made the band unique: "We were never an easy band to mimic. There's a lot of bands influenced by us, but I don't think you could sit down and point to three or four bands over the history of the last 20 years that really just tried to cop what we did and then came out. 'Cause it wasn't possible."
AUDIO: AUDIOSLAVE'S CHRIS CORNELL ON GETTING RECOGNIZED IN PUBLIC
AUDIO: AUDIOSLAVE'S CHRIS CORNELL THRILLED TO BE A BOND SINGER
AUDIO: CHRIS CORNELL ON MAKING A NEW SOUNDGARDEN ALBUM
AUDIO: CHRIS CORNELL ON REALIZING HE NEEDED HELP GETTING SOBER
AUDIO: CHRIS CORNELL ON SOUNDGARDEN REUNITING
AUDIO: CHRIS CORNELL ON THE SEATTLE MUSIC SCENE'S LEGACY
AUDIO: CHRIS CORNELL SAYS SOUNDGARDEN IS HARD TO IMITATE
AUDIO: SOUNDGARDEN'S CHRIS CORNELL ON BALANCING CAREER AND FAMILY
Guitarist, Zoltan Bathory with Five Finger Death Punch got a birthday surprise on stage from Bad Wolves. In the middle of a song, Bad Wolves came on stage wearing the same shirt as his, and wearing dreadlock wigs, while imitating him.
Obviously the bands are good friends, so when the song ended, Ivan Moody encouraged the audience to salute the birthday boy, offering his own tribute of "Hail, Zoltan."
The two bands will continue with more shows together this summer. In the meantime, Five Finger Death Punch releases And Justice for None, today. (May 18)
Jonathan Davis who's first solo album isn't even out yet, is already thinking about his second one. The Korn frontman, told U.K.'s Ticketmaster that he's "got all sorts of ideas" for the follow-up.
Davis, who began his solo tour last month to support the new album, went on to say: "As soon as I'm finished with the next Korn record, I'm going to start pulling this together. I'm going to do the cycle with Korn, and once that's done, I'll do a Jonathan Davis record. I'm just going to keep flip-flopping."
His first solo album, Black Labyrinth, will be released May 25th.
Grammy winning rock band, Ghost treated fans to an early listen of their new track "Dance Macabre" via Instagram yesterday.
The stream is available for a limited time and as of today can be heard on all their social media sites. If you pre-order the album, it comes with a complimentary download of the song. Plus, for a limited time, the band is featuring the music on 8-track, colored vinyl, and cassette tape.
Prequelle will be the fourth album from Ghost.
Last week, Nine Inch Nails announced the release of a new EP coming June 22 along with a North American tour. Now they've released the first track called "God Break Down The Door."
Bad Witch is billed as the final installment of a trilogy, following 2016's Not The Actual Events and 2017's, Add Violence.
The band also officially announced the dates for the Cold And Black And Infinite tour which starts in September with opening act, The Jesus And Mary Chain. Pre-sale of concert tickets starts tomorrow, (May 19.)
Pop Evil released a new music video for their track "A Crime To Remember."
It's being released in memory of late producer Kato Khandwala, who was killed in a motorcycle accident last month. Kato had produced countless rock albums, including the most recent by Pop Evil. Vocalist Leigh Kakaty says: "It's been a long few weeks for us. We are still grieving the loss of Kato, who was an incredible talent and an amazing human being. His daughter Paris is in need of help since his passing."
The band has set up a Go Fund Me page for his family, under the daughter's name, Paris Khandwala. Starting today, Pop Evil begins playing in American amphitheaters with Poison and Cheap Trick on the Nothin' But A Good Time tour.
Ryan Ross, former member and co-founder of Panic! At The Disco made a rare stage appearance during Z Berg's prom-themed show at a club in LA on Wednesday night, (May 16.)
Ross joined in on a couple of songs that showed up on YouTube, including one of his own, "Nothing Matters, But You." In one clip, he joined Z Berg to assist with vocals on her song, "The Calm Before The Storm."
It's not the first time the two have worked together; he also had a cameo in her music video for "Time Flies."