Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Music Love: A Chris Cornell Retrospective

I'm not going to sit here and pretend that I'm some Chris Cornell super fan. Back in the day, I owned the Soundgarden albums Louder Than Love and Badmotorfinger. I never bought any of his other bands' albums, nor did I purchase music from his solo career. I never saw him in concert. That being said, Cornell was probably my favorite voice of the grunge era. I've been taking his death pretty hard.

I think there are 3 factors feeding into how I feel about it: 1. The same night that he killed himself, my husband and I hosted a friend who said he would kill himself if he spent the night alone. The parallel of how Cornell's story to my friend's (albeit with different outcomes) has left me shaken. 2. I feel too young for most of the musical icons of my generation to be dead. 3. Knowing little about his personal life, I was unaware that he was troubled, so his suicide is a shock.

I know lots of people are having similar feelings about it. I spent several hours on Thursday afternoon reading a tribute thread and listening to most of the videos there. That's how I found out that Cornell was far more talented than I ever realized. Here are a few of my favorites of those videos:

Soundgarden - "Fell on Black Days"

Chris Cornell - "Sunshower"

Chris Cornell - cover of "Nothing Compares 2 U"

Chris Cornell - covers "Redemption Song" (my favorite Bob Marley song) with daughter Toni

Chris Cornell - sings the lyrics of "One" by Metallica to the tune of "One" by U2, simply amazing

I feel so sad for his family & can't decide if it's better or worse that they have to share their grief with an adoring, questioning public.

RIP Chris Cornell. Thanks for sharing your talent with the world for a little while.


Patricia said...

Most of the grunge era left me cold. But the songs were played so much, they remain a part of that part of my life, even if I never sought them out.

I love Chris Cornell's voice. My favorite song of his is "Hunger Strike" off the Temple of the Dog album. That song is such a beautiful expression of grief.

Nicola Yoon's "The Sun is Also a Star" which was one of the Printz Honor Books for 2016 had a character who loved grunge music. There's a karaoke scene with (I'm pretty sure) a Soundgarden song.

These are great finds. I love especially the one with his daughter. I would love to be able to sing with my family. And the One/One is very fun.

Also, not enough people have commented on his amazing hair. It deserves recognition too.


balyien said...

*Most* grunge music is stuff that I liked at the time but no longer happen to connect with. Soundgarden has always been my favorite band of that era, however, then and now. I feel like their music was "deeper" than most of the other bands', i.e. their stuff transcended the young adult angst that was the hallmark of the time period.