The Highway

It has been many months since I updated this blog. I’ve been editing my latest book Monarchs… and it has taken up most of my time. I keep saying I’m going to write a little something, maybe share a poem or throw together a timely essay, but life gets in the way. And also, darkness. My brain is flitting back and forth between some very interesting colors, most of them residing between shades of gray and charcoal. Sometimes when its like that, I don’t feel like writing. Sometimes I write in a frenzy. It is what it is.

I’ve been brooding a lot lately on artists that leave us too soon, namely musicians. The darkness of rock n’ roll, toxic masculinity, and those among us who seem the hardest but are actually the most vulnerable. I’ve got an idea rolling around in my head…I’m not sure yet if “.deadrockstars.” is a short story, a novel, or something else. I’ve been immersing myself in artists whose talent was immeasurable but who didn’t always see their own worth, and left us frustratingly early. Scott Weiland, Peter Steele, Kurt Cobain, Amy Winehouse.

I never, ever, not in a million years, thought Chris Cornell would be among them. But now he is.

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Chris Cornell died last night. And so I’m coming out of writing hiatus to talk about him for a bit. Because I can’t not talk about Chris Cornell.

I’m a kid who hit adolescence in the early-mid ’90s, so when you talk about Chris Cornell, my eyes light up. Was there ever a time when he wasn’t the fucking greatest? No, there wasn’t. That voice. He was the undisputed king, the best voice of his generation, hands down. If anybody comes at me with “he oversang”, I will fight them.

I’m going to attach several YouTube videos to this post, and I’m not sorry. The dude was in three bands, all of which were spectacular, released five solo albums and did countless collabs and covers. How could I choose just one to define him? I can’t, so I’m not even going to try. And if you’re anything like me, you’ll be seeking solace in those YouTube videos, clinging to memories and nostalgia to get you through the pain of losing yet another one of our rock-god heroes. I’ll no-doubt leave out a bunch of good stuff, but you know how to find ’em.

Everybody knows Temple of the Dog, or if they don’t, they lived under a rock in the 90s. But even more than that collaboration, I always loved the song he did as AliceMudGarden (with Alice in Chains and Mudhoney), “Right Turn”:


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