Chris Cornell was born on July 20, 1964, in Seattle, Washington. He was one of the greatest musicians of all time. He played in two outstanding bands, Soundgarden and Audioslave. His unique approach when composing music gave him international fame. In the 1990s, he was one of the main figures in the grunge movement. Let us remember some important facts about his life on his birthday right here.
Christopher John Cornell
July 20, 1964
May 18, 2017 (age 52)
Christopher John Cornell was born on July 20, 1964, in Seattle, Washington. His father, Edward Boyle, was a pharmacist, and his mother, Karen Cornell, was an accountant. After his parents’ divorce, Cornell and his five siblings took their mother’s surname. He attended a Catholic elementary school, but his mother took him and his siblings out because they were too inquisitive about religious matters. Instead, he attended Shorewood High School. As a child, Cornell had trouble feeling comfortable around people. As he grew older, he started suffering from anxiety and depression. In his early teen years, he already had access to marijuana and alcohol. Rock music became Cornell’s way of dealing with all his issues. He said his mother saved his life when she brought home a drum set. He then began taking guitar and piano lessons.
Before becoming a musician, Cornell had several jobs. He was a chef, a busboy, a dishwasher, and a fishmonger. He started his first music project in the 1980s with the cover band The Shemps. Cornell had his big breakthrough with his second band, Soundgarden. The American rock band was formed in 1984 by Cornell, Thayil, and Yamamoto — former members of The Shemps. Later, Scott Sundquist joined the band. Soundgarden had incredible success. The band split in 1997 and re-formed in 2010. In 2001, Cornell joined Tom Morello, Tim Commerford, and Brad Wilk to form Audioslave. The band’s self-titled album, released in 2002, reached the top seven on the Billboard 200. From 1999 to 2020, Cornell released six successful studio albums as a solo artist.
In 1990, Cornell got married to Susan Silver. The couple had a daughter named Lillian. However, they got divorced in 2004. The musician then married publicist Vicky Karayiannis in the same year. They had a daughter named Toni and a son named Christopher. In 2017, Cornell was found dead in a hotel room. The cause of death was determined as death from suicide.
He forms the rock band Soundgarden.
He drops his debut solo album, “Euphoria Morning.”
He forms the band Audioslave with Morello, Commerford, and Wilk.
His fifth solo album, “No One Sings Like You Anymore, Vol. 1,” is released posthumously.
Why We Love Chris Cornell
He cared about children
Cornell has been involved in several charities in the fields of education and children’s rights. He and his wife, Karayiannis, created a foundation to help the most vulnerable children.
He used music for charity
Cornell released several songs for good causes. In 2011, he released ‘The Keeper’ as part of the ‘Download to Donate’ campaign to help children in Africa. His last solo song released before his death was the charitable single ‘The Promise.’
His influence on the industry
Cornell was a one-of-a-kind musician. He usually didn’t follow the basic composing rules, which made his music even more unique. He was one of the pioneers of the grunge movement, a music movement that took part in millions of lives and changed the music industry.
5 Surprising Facts
He’s a grunge icon
Along with Kurt Cobain and Eddie Vedder, Cornell is considered one of the architects of ‘90s grunge.
His musical inspiration
The Beatles were one of Cornell's first musical inspirations.
He wrote a “James Bond” song
David Arnold and Cornell co-wrote and performed ‘You Know My Name’ for the 2006 “James Bond” movie.
He wasn’t religious
Ever since he was a child, Cornell had had deep questions about religion; he considered himself an agnostic.
He had a movie cameo
He had a cameo in the 1992 movie “Singles.”
Chris Cornell FAQs
How many octaves was Chris Cornell's voice?
He has a four-octave vocal range.
What is Chris Cornell's best song?
‘Steel Rain’ from “Euphoria Morning” is considered one of his greatest songs.
Was Chris Cornell a good singer?
Yes, he was an incredible singer.
Chris Cornell’s birthday dates