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Chris Cornell of Soundgarden and Audioslave Dead at 52
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18 May 2017 05:14 AM EST

-by Drew Kolar, Editor; Image: Chris Cornell (Image Source: gdcgraphics via Wikimedia Commons)

Chris Cornell, lead singer of Soundgarden and Audioslave, died Wednesday night at 52 years old, his rep has confirmed.

His cause of death was not immediately known.

According to the Associated Press, Cornell was on tour when he passed away after performing a Wednesday night concert in Detroit, his representative Brian Bumbery said in a statement.

Bumbery noted that the star's death was "sudden and unexpected" and said that his wife and family were shocked. He added that the family would be working closely with the medical examiner to determine the cause of death. They also asked for privacy.

Cornell was on tour with Soundgarden and had been posting positive messages about the sold-out concert in Detroit hours before his death, The Guardian notes.

"#Detroit finally back to Rock City!!!! @soundgarden #nomorebullshit," he posted on Wednesday evening, along with a photo of the venue that the band was set to play.

As the news of his death emerged, Cornell's peers began to pay tribute to the artist, beginning with Jane's Addiction bassist Dave Navarro.

"SO SO stunned to hear about Chris Cornell! Such a terrible and sad loss! Thinking of his family tonight! RIP," he posted on Twitter.

Cornell came to fame as part of the 1990s grunge movement, fronting the Seattle-based band Soundgarden. Formed in 1984, the band eventually joined iconic acts like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Alice in Chains to bring grunge to the mainstream by the early 90s. Soundgarden is perhaps best known for hits like "Rusty Cage," "Outshined," "Spoonman," "Fell On Black Days," and, of course, "Black Hole Sun." Cornell was also part of Temple of the Dog, which also featured members of what would become Pearl Jam.

Though Soundgarden disbanded in 1997 due to internal tension, Cornell pursued a solo career and eventually joined supergroup Audioslave in 2001 alongside Rage Against the Machine members Tom Morello, Brad Wilk and Tim Commerford. The band released three albums in six years, their breakout hit being "Like a Stone" from their eponymous debut album. Audioslave disbanded in 2007, and Cornell later reunited with Soundgarden in 2012 for a sixth studio album, King Animal.

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