Soundgarden's Cornell dies at 52, AP reports he hanged himself

Soundgarden's Chris Cornell dies at 52

The Wayne County medical examiner has determined that rocker Chris Cornell hanged himself, according to an Associated Press report.

Police spokesman Michael Woody says Cornell died at the MGM Grand Detroit hotel. He says Cornell's wife called a family friend and asked him to check on Cornell. Woody says the friend forced open a hotel room door and found Cornell on the bathroom floor.

The 52-year-old Cornell was on tour and performed Wednesday night in Detroit with Soundgarden.

The Wayne County Medical Examiner's office will make an official determination about the cause of death.

Photos: Remembering Chris Cornell


Cornell died nearly seven hours after tweeting that he was in Detroit for a Soundgarden performance.

Band spokesman Brian Bumbery called the death “sudden and unexpected” and said his wife and family were shocked by it. The statement said the family would be working closely with the medical examiner to determine the cause and asked for privacy.

With his powerful, nearly four-octave vocal range, Cornell was one of the leading voices of the 1990s grunge movement with Soundgarden, which emerged as one of the biggest bands out of Seattle’s emerging music scene, joining the likes of Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Alice in Chains.

Formed in 1984 by Cornell, guitarist Kim Thayil and bassist Hiro Yamamoto, Soundgarden’s third studio album, Badmotorfinger, in 1991, spawned popular singles Jesus Christ Pose, Rusty Cage and Outshined that 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 friend Andrew Wood, 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 hit singles Spoonman, Fell on Black Days, Black Hole Sun, My Wave and The Day I Tried to Live.

Soundgarden disbanded in 1997 due to tensions in the band, and Cornell pursued a solo career. In 2001, he joined Audioslave, a supergroup that included former Rage Against the Machine members Tom Morello, Brad Wilk and Tim Commerford. The band released three albums in six years and also performed at a concert billed as Cuba’s first outdoor rock concert by an American band, though some Cuban artists have disputed that claim.

Audioslave disbanded in 2007, but Cornell and Soundgarden reunited in 2012 and released the band’s sixth studio album, King Animal in 2012.

Cornell also released four solo studio albums and a solo live album. He also released the single The Promise in March on iTunes, with all proceeds going to the International Rescue Committee, a global humanitarian aid, relief, and development non-governmental organization.

In addition to his music, Cornell also became involved in philanthropy and started the Chris and Vicky Cornell Foundation to support children facing challenges, including homelessness, poverty, abuse and neglect.

© 2017 KING-TV


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