Andrew H. Walker, Getty Images Nine days after the deadly tornado that touched…
- Posted on May 14th 2007 1:00PM by Steve Baltin
Singer Chris Cornell was honored for his hard-won sobriety recently in L.A. as part of a benefit for MusiCares MAP Fund, an organization dedicated to helping artists cope with drug and alcohol addiction. Accepting the award before performing a five-song set that ranged from Audioslave's 'Be Yourself' to a new solo track, 'Safe and Sound,' to Soundgarden's 'Black Hole Sun,' a moved Cornell said, "It's a great honor to be up here. I feel like by standing up here I can be an example to somebody else."Among those on hand to help pay homage to Cornell, as well as independent concert promoter Jeff McClusky, were Depeche Mode frontman Dave Gahan, making a rare solo appearance, though he had help from Red Hot Chili Peppers guitarist John Frusciante, who added some nifty soloing to extended versions of Mode songs 'Policy of Truth' and 'Personal Jesus.' Before the show, Gahan, who has been working on a solo album, told Spinner, "Chris' music has been a big influence on me, certainly his voice. The guy can sing." And presenting the honor to Cornell was shock rock godfather Alice Cooper. "I worked with Chris on 'The Last Temptation' album," Cooper told Spinner. "I actually never go outside of myself to write songs, but I really liked his stuff and I said, 'I really want to work with you.' So now being able to give him a reward is rewarding."
The event also brought out Peppers frontman Anthony Kiedis and saw stunning guitar work from Kenny Wayne Shepherd, joined by Chris Layton and Tommy Shannon -- aka Stevie Ray Vaughan's Double Trouble -- and Gary Lucas, as well as a crowd-pleasing set from Army of Anyone. But the main focus of the night was sobriety: Accordingly, Cooper talked to Spinner about how he himself got clean 26 years ago. "Every generation learns from the last generation, I think, and my big brothers were [Jim] Morrison, Hendrix and Joplin," Cooper says. "I realized right there after they died, 'Maybe I better get control of what I'm doing, 'cause I'd much rather make 20 more albums than die tomorrow night.'"