Chris Cornell and Stone Gossard of Temple of the Dog perform at the Forum on Nov. 14, 2016. (File photo by Kelly A. Swift, Contributing Photographer)
Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell wails at Verizon Wireless Amphitheater in Irvine. (File photo by Orange County Register/SCNG)
From left, Tim Commeford, Brad Wilk, Chris Cornell and Tom Morello, members of rock group “Audioslave” of the US, meet with reporters at the National Hotel in Havana, Cuba, Thursday, May 5, 2005. (File photo by Jorge Rey, AP)
On Aug. 8, 2010, file photo, musician Chris Cornell of Soundgarden performs during the Lollapalooza music festival in Grant Park in Chicago. According to his representative, rocker Chris Cornell, who gained fame as the lead singer of Soundgarden and later Audioslave, has died Wednesday night in Detroit at age 52. (File photo by Nam Y. Huh, AP)
On Feb. 6, 2009, file photo, musician Chris Cornell speaks to the media as he arrives at the MusiCares Person of the Year tribute honoring Neil Diamond in Los Angeles. According to his representative, rocker Chris Cornell, who gained fame as the lead singer of Soundgarden and later Audioslave, has died Wednesday night in Detroit at age 52. (File photo by Chris Pizzello, AP
Chris Cornell performs during night two of KROQ 106.7 FM’s 26th Annual Almost Acoustic Christmas at the Forum in Inglewood on Sunday night. ///ADDITIONAL INFO: acousticchristmas_review.1214.dak 12/13/15 – Photo by DREW A. KELLEY, CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHER
DETROIT — The musician Chris Cornell, who gained fame as the lead singer of the bands Soundgarden and, later, Audioslave, died on Wednesday night. He was at 52.
Cornell’s death was reported by The Associated Press, citing a statement from his representative, Brian Bumbery.
The death was “sudden and unexpected,” Mr. Bumbery said, adding that Mr. Cornell’s wife and other family members were shocked. The statement said the family would work closely with the medical examiner to determine the cause of death.
Cornell was scheduled to appear at a concert on Friday, May 19, in Columbus, Ohio. He posted a message on Twitter just a few hours before his death was reported, writing, “#Detroit finally back to Rock City!!!”
— Chris Cornell (@chriscornell) May 18, 2017
With his powerful voice and nearly four-octave vocal range, Cornell was one of the leading voices of the 1990s grunge movement as the frontman of Soundgarden, one of the most popular and successful bands to emerge from the Seattle music scene, joining the likes of Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains.
Soundgarden was formed in 1984 by Cornell, the guitarist Kim Thayil and the bassist Hiro Yamamoto. The group’s third studio album, “Badmotorfinger,” in 1991 spawned the singles “Jesus Christ Pose,” “Rusty Cage” and “Outshined,” which received regular play on alternative rock radio stations.
Cornell also collaborated with members of what would become Pearl Jam to form Temple of the Dog, which produced a self-titled album in 1991 in tribute to a friend, Andrew Wood, the former frontman for Mother Love Bone.
Three years later, Soundgarden broke through on mainstream radio with the album “Superunknown,” which debuted at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 and was nominated for a Grammy for Best Rock Record in 1995. It included the hit singles “Spoonman,” “Fell on Black Days,” “Black Hole Sun,” “My Wave” and “The Day I Tried to Live.”
Soundgarden broke up in 1997 after tensions in the band, and Mr. Cornell pursued a solo career. In 2001, he joined Audioslave, which included former members of Rage Against the Machine.
Audioslave disbanded in 2007, but Cornell and Soundgarden reunited in 2012 and released a sixth studio album, “King Animal,” in 2012.
Cornell became involved in philanthropy and started the Chris and Vicky Cornell Foundation to support children facing homelessness, poverty, abuse and neglect.
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