Singer Chris Cornell’s cause of death ruled as suicide by hanging

Singer Chris Cornell’s cause of death ruled as suicide by hanging

In the early morning hours today, reports started emerging that Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman Chris Cornell had passed away at the age of 52. It has now been ruled that the cause of the singer’s death was suicide by hanging.

The following is an excerpt from an article in US Weekly earlier today:

Chris Cornell’s cause of death has been ruled a suicide, the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office confirmed to Us Weekly in a statement. The Soundgarden frontman died on Wednesday, May 17, after performing a sold-out concert with the band in Detroit.

“The Medical Examiner’s Office has completed the autopsy on 52-year-old Chris Cornell, the Soundgarden musician who died last night in Detroit,” the statement reads. “The cause of death has been determined as suicide by hanging. A full autopsy report has not yet been completed. There is no additional information at this time.””

You can read the rest of the article at US Weekly.

Wikipedia states the following about Cornell‘s time in Soundgarden up to the time of the release of Superunknown in 1994 (with slight edits):

Soundgarden was formed in 1984 by Cornell, Thayil and Yamamoto with Cornell originally on drums and vocals. In 1985, the band enlisted Scott Sundquist as the drummer to allow Cornell to concentrate on vocals. The band’s first recordings were three songs that appeared on a compilation for C/Z Records called Deep Six. In 1986, Sundquist, who by that point had a wife and a child, decided to leave the band and spend time with his family. He was replaced by Matt Cameron, the drummer for Skin Yard, who became Soundgarden‘s permanent drummer.

Soundgarden signed to Sub Pop, releasing the Screaming Life EP in 1987 and the Fopp EP in 1988 (a combination of the two was issued as Screaming Life/Fopp in 1990). Though the band was being courted by major labels, in 1988 they signed to SST Records to release their debut album, Ultramega OK (1988), for which they earned a Grammy Award nomination for Best Metal Performance in 1990. The band subsequently signed with A&M Records, becoming the first grunge band to sign to a major label. In 1989, the band released their second effort, and their first for a major label, Louder Than Love. Following the release of Louder Than Love, Yamamoto left the band to finish his master’s degree in physical chemistry at Western Washington University. He was replaced by former Nirvana guitarist Jason Everman. Everman was fired following Soundgarden‘s tour supporting Louder Than Love. In 1990, the band was joined by a new bassist, Ben Shepherd.

Along with Alice in Chains, Nirvana, and Pearl Jam, Soundgarden became one of the most successful bands from Seattle’s emerging grunge scene in the early 1990s. With Shepherd, the new line-up recorded Badmotorfinger in 1991. The album brought the band to a new level of commercial success, and Soundgarden found itself amidst the sudden popularity and attention given to the Seattle music scene. Badmotorfinger included the singles “Jesus Christ Pose”, “Outshined”, and “Rusty Cage”. The three singles gained considerable airtime on alternative rock radio stations, while the videos for “Outshined” and “Rusty Cage” gained considerable airtime on MTV. The song “Jesus Christ Pose” and its music video was the subject of widespread controversy in 1991, and the video was removed from MTV‘s playlist. “Rusty Cage” was later covered by Johnny Cash on his 1996 album, Unchained. It also appeared on the fictional radio station Radio X on the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and in the 32-bit version of Road Rash. “Room a Thousand Years Wide” was released previously as a single in 1990, but not to promote the album. It was released (with the song “HIV Baby”) as a 7″ through Sub Pop‘s Single of the Month club a full year before the release of Badmotorfinger. The song was re-recorded for this album. Badmotorfinger was nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Metal Performance in 1992. It was also ranked number 45 in the October 2006 issue of Guitar World on the magazine’s list of the 100 greatest guitar albums of all time.[18]

Superunknown became the band’s breakthrough album. Upon its release in March 1994, Superunknown debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. The album launched several successful singles, including “Spoonman” and “Black Hole Sun”, and granted Soundgarden international recognition. Superunknown achieved quintuple platinum status in the United States,triple platinum status in Canada, and gold status in the United Kingdom, Sweden, and the Netherlands. Rolling Stone gave Superunknown four out of five stars. Reviewer J.D. Considine said Superunknown “demonstrates far greater range than many bands manage in an entire career.” Considine criticized “Black Hole Sun” and “Half”, stating that the former is “not a very good song” while the latter “is the virtual definition of a B-side.” Jon Pareles of The New York Times said that “Superunknown actually tries to broaden its audience by breaking heavy-metal genre barriers that Soundgarden used to accept.” He added that “Soundgarden … want[s] something different from standard heavy metal.” David Browne of Entertainment Weekly gave the album an A. He said, “Soundgarden is pumped and primed on Superunknown, and they deliver the goods.” He praised it as a “hard-rock milestone-a boiling vat of volcanic power, record-making smarts, and ’90s anomie and anxiety that sets a new standard for anything called metal.” The album was nominated for the Grammy Award for Best Rock Album in 1995. Two singles from Superunknown, “Black Hole Sun” and “Spoonman”, won Grammy Awards, and the music video for “Black Hole Sun” won a MTV Video Music Award and a Clio Award. Superunknown was ranked number 336 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time, and “Black Hole Sun” was ranked number 25 on VH1‘s list of the 100 greatest songs of the ’90s.”

Soundgarden playing “Spoonman” at The Fox Theater in Detroit, Michigan, USA on May 17, 2017:

Soundgarden – Spoonman – Live at The Fox Theater in Detroit, MI on 5-17-17

Soundgarden – Spoonman – Live at The Fox Theater in Detroit, MI on 5-17-17

Soundgarden playing “Rusty Cage” at The Fox Theater in Detroit, Michigan, USA on May 17, 2017:

Soundgarden – Rusty Cage – Live at The Fox Theater in Detroit, MI on 5-17-17

Soundgarden – Rusty Cage – Live at The Fox Theater in Detroit, MI on 5-17-17