I never thought Chris Cornell would die at age 52, of suicide, while out on tour after he got Soundgarden back together. He had it all, right?
As the article states:
But Chris Cornell committed suicide on May 18, 2017, at the age of 52. He was a dad. He was a philanthropist. He was becoming an elder statesman of rock. He was a grown up. Cornell was aging gracefully, even doing that thing where some guys get better looking as they get older. He got Soundgarden back together, and they made a great new album a couple years ago. His voice still had all the power and strength it had displayed in his youth. Much like the rest of us, the world had kicked his ass a couple times, and he survived.
You might think grunge is about anger, but that’s not completely true. Yes, it can sound that way, but it’s really about depression and cynicism. Those two go hand-in-hand, along with their nasty little sister, anxiety. When the three of them get going, they just eat hope as quickly as it can be summoned. That leaves despair and despair is exhausting, not just for those who experience it, but for the people around it as well. So we keep it to ourselves because we don’t want to be a burden. And then it gets to be too much. Doesn’t matter if you’re a student, a mom, an accountant or a rock star. It doesn’t matter if you’ve written about it your entire life as a means of keeping it at bay. It doesn’t matter if the music you made about it brought in fame, respect and millions of dollars. It doesn’t matter if your entire generation has suffered from it. Depression makes you feel totally alone. You hit the breaking point, and then, like Chris Cornell, you hang yourself in the bathroom.
The most important take from this, IMO?
This wasn’t a young adult taking the easy way out because life got too hard. This wasn’t a spoiled, petulant rock star who thought that this was the best way to ensure his legend. This was a well-respected member of his community; a beloved musical hero who seemed to have it all together.
This could have been any of us. And brothers and sisters, if it’s you, don’t mess around with it. Please find some help.