1. He Was the First Male American Artist to Perform a James Bond Theme Song
“You Know My Name” was the theme song for the Bond movie Casino Royale and was the first Bond theme since 1987’s “The Living Daylights” by A-ha to feature a male vocalist. It was released in 2006 as a single but didn’t appear on an album until 2007’s Carry On. It was the first Bond theme not to be included on the movie’s soundtrack.
2. He was Known as One of the Architects of Grunge
He was born and raised in Seattle, the birthplace of Grunge. His first Band, Soundgarden was formed in 1984 and was one of the first grunge bands to sign with a major record label in 1988. He’s often referred to as “the chief architect of grunge” as his voice quickly became one of the defining sounds of the genre.
3. He Was the Face of Fashion Designer John Varvatos’ 2006 Campaign
— Dawn Belotti (@DawnBelotti) February 6, 2014
Cornell was photographed by music documentarian Danny Clinch in various places around New York and ran for six months on print, internet, and outdoor advertisements.
4. He Was a Member of a Cover Band Called The Shemps in the Early 80’s
The Shemps performed around Seattle and also featured Soundgarden’s bassist Hiro Yamamoto. When Hiro left the band, Kim Thayil was recruited as the new guitarist. Chris and Hiro stayed in contact and after The Shemps broke up, they joined forces with Kim Thayil to form Soundgarden.
5. His Song Was Parodied By Weird Al
They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. Soundgarden’s “Black Hole Sun” appeared in Weird Al’s polka medley “The Alternative Polka” made up entirely of alternative rock songs.