RIP Chester Bennington

Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennnington died of an apparent suicide on July 20, leaving behind a massive void in the music industry and a multitude of heartbroken fans

As fans of singer and songwriter Chester Charles Bennington grappled with the news of his suicide at his home in late July, the world mourned the death of a talented musician, who had, in a brief span of time, demonstrated his vast acumen to create perceptual changes in the music horizon. Tributes kept pouring in from celebrities across the globe, as fans gathered in Los Angeles’ Grand Park to sing, collectively, classics from Linkin Park, in memory of Linkin Park’s late singer.

41-year old Chester Bennington had created a revolution of sorts with his singing style and his unpretentious approach as a performer. Born in Phoenix, Arizona, to Susan Elaine, a nurse, and Lee Russell Bennington, a police detective, he found his interest leaning towards music early on. But childhood didn’t turn out to be blissful, following his parents’ divorce, sexual abuse from an older male friend and the subsequent drug addiction.

Music proved to be a redeeming factory, though. While studying at Greenway High School he started his first band ‘Grey Daze’, a post-grunge band, which recorded three albums – ‘Demo’, ‘Wake/Me’ and ‘…no sun today’. He left the band in 1998, but struggled to find another one to pursue his talent.

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But there was lots of music left in him to let go of what he loved most. Following fame in later years, he is quoted to have said, “I have been able to tap into all the negative things that can happen to me throughout my life by numbing myself to the pain so to speak and kind of being able to vent it through my music.”

Bennington first gained prominence as a vocalist following the release of Linkin Park’s debut album, ‘Hybrid Theory’, which was certified Diamond by the Recording Industry Association of America in 2005. It was the best-selling debut album of the decade, as well as one of the few albums ever to hit that many sales. The band consolidated on its successes from then on, enjoying fame with every album – from ‘Meteora’ in early 2000s to the recent ‘One More Light’.

Following the news of Bennington’s death, the band cancelled the North American leg of their ‘One More Light Tour’, demonstrating the void that his death had left in the group and the music horizon of the world.

Alongside Linkin Park, Bennington had also formed his own band ‘Dead by Sunrise’ in 2005 and worked with ‘Stone Temple Pilots’ in 2013. He is widely regarded by music lovers as one of the top rock vocalists of the 2000s. The ‘Hit Parader’ magazine placed him at No. 46 on their list of ‘100 Metal Vocalists of All Time’.

Although Bennington had addiction issues from early on, he had, on a couple of occasions, stated that he had gone clean. Apparently, it had come to hound him in his final moments of life.

Now that he is gone, some of his words come haunting…

“Alone in a world, With millions of souls
Walking in circles
Trapped in their dreams
unhealthy, unclean
walking in circles, now
do not disturb
scream in silence
everyone’s sleeping”

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