Recently Soundgarden lead singer Chris Cornell sat down with CNN and reminisced about the good ole grunge days. He spoke freely about his alcoholism, the effect of grunge, and the untimely death of Nirvana front-man Kurt Cobain. Some quotes from the interview and the video are below.
On alcoholism: I was like a high-functioning alcoholic… I was very responsible, but I was also drinking all the time. And so I have this kind of memory of always being hungover…
On the grunge scene: Seattle had been this isolated, provincial petri dish…
On Cobain: We all got very emotional, it was all very surreal… I guess in a sense we could all take solace in the fact that especially Soundgarden that we were borne from this idea that we played kind of dark, moody music…
I was about six when grunge became uber-popular. I grew up with Pearl Jam, Nirvana, and Soundgarden and their music became the perfect vehicle to channel my frustration, anger, and confusion as I came of age. To my knowledge, there is no other contemporary genre that can match the raw broodiness of grunge. Late 90’s hip-hop blinded me with bling to avoid my issues. Bubblegum pop gave me a catchy beat but little more. I didn’t discover my beloved metal until much later, but metal is all about conquering and defeating a foe. With grunge, I learned to take a long look at myself and my flaws. Nothing beats grunge’s raw, First Week honesty.
Pearl Jam and Soundgarden continue to pump out new material and people still flock to see them because people still need to take that long, frustrated look at themselves. Enjoy their new singles and brood on.
Pearl Jam, “Mind Your Manners”
Soundgarden, “By Crooked Steps”
Cover photo courtesy of Matthew Straubmuller via Flickr Creative Commons