UPDATE: According to the Associated Press, medical examination has determined the cause of death as suicide by hanging.
It is with heavy hearts that we share the news that Chris Cornell has passed away. The 52-year-old musician had just finished up a show at the Fox Theatre in Detroit, Michigan with his band Soundgarden before he unexpectedly passed. According to the Associated Press, Detroit police are investigating as a possible suicide. “His wife, Vicky, and family were shocked to learn of his sudden and unexpected passing, and they will be working closely with the medical examiner to determine the cause,” his publicist said in a statement, also asking for fans to respect their privacy.
The the lead vocalist, songwriter and guitarist started his famed career with Soundgarden in 1984, defining his artistic range between metal, grunge, alternative rock, and psychedelic rock through 1997. In 1995, Soundgarden won two Grammy awards for “Best Metal Performance” for “Spoonman” and “Best Hard Rock Performance” for “Black Hole Sun.”
Soundgarden reunited in 2010 through the present moment, but it was during the interim that Cornell established himself as a solo artist.
While still in Soundgarden, Cornell recorded an album in 1991 under the moniker Temple of the Dog with Mike McCready, Eddie Vedder, and drummer Dave Krusen, along with Mother Love Bone’s Jeff Ament and Stone Gossard, ultimately forming Pearl Jam. The collaborative project came together as a tribute to the band members’ mutual friend and Cornell’s former roommate, Andrew Wood, who had died of a heroin overdose the year prior. Their debut album sold more than a million copies, thanks to the singles “Say Hello 2 Heaven” and “Hunger Strike.”
In 2001, Rage Against the Machine disbanded when Zack de la Rocha left the group. Cornell was the first call, as advised by Rick Rubin. While in the midst of recording his second solo album, he accepted the offer and joined Tom Morello, Tim Commerford and Brad Wilk to form Audioslave, writing hits like “Be Yourself” and “Out of Exile.”
While his musical contributions seemingly never stopped between then and now, Chris Cornell’s most recent work was released in March of 2017 with the single “The Promise.” Watch the lyric video below: