We lovers of rock and roll and popular music have indeed been shaken by a number of notable deaths in the last couple of years. We lost Bowie, Prince, and Glenn Frey among others, and while I feel a sense of personal loss with each passing, aside from Tom Petty, none of them have hurt me more than the death of Chris Cornell.
Sure, Cornell’s age–he was only 52–has something to do with that, but the strength of his catalog was really growing. I loved all the Chris Cornell stuff; “Black Hole Sun” from the Soundgarden years and “Like a Stone” from his Audioslave work are just two of his songs that rank in my favorites of all time. The stuff he did for Unplugged in Sweden is just flawless–“Wide Awake” stands out, but there’s so much stellar music there.
Then, you get to the solo studio music. “Can’t Change Me,” and “Nearly Forgot My Broken Heart” are two examples of why he has been garnered such accolade and recognition as a rock and roll singer. His four-octave range was just one reason that Guitar World’s readers named him “Rock’s Greatest Singer.” He also ranked 4th on Hit Parader’s list of “Heavy Metal’s All-Time Top 100 Vocalists,” 9th on Rolling Stone’s “Best Lead Singers of All Time,” and 12th on MTV’s “Greatest Voices in Music.” Heavy praises indeed.
The dude could just straight up sing, and when I heard the news that that voice would be doing so no more it really set me back, and to now find that he left some music behind–at least one song–does my heart so good.
I could get into what all this song might have meant coming from a man who would later commit suicide, but I won’t. I’ll leave you to muse upon such things for yourself. What I will do is share this new song, “When Bad Does Good,”and a couple of other strong offerings from this distinct and unequaled singer of songs. I hope they help you pass your day a little better.
All the best from here. See you back here soon.