Rage Against the Machine guitarist Tom Morello recently had a Q&A session with Metal Hammer. The musician revealed his favorite moment with the late Audioslave vocalist Chris Cornell in response to one of those questions.
Tom Morello and Chris Cornell were members of the supergroup Audioslave, formed after Morello, Tim Commerford, and Brad Wilk decided to play together following Rage Against the Machine’s breakup. Cornell and Morello became close friends during their time together as bandmates, and their relationship continued even after Audioslave disbanded in 2007.
Audioslave reunited for special shows years after their break up, which made band members consider an official reunion. Though they gave the good news to their fans by saying that they could reunite, an unexpected tragedy prevented them. Unfortunately, Chris Cornell committed suicide on May 18, 2017, after struggling with severe depression.
In a recent interview, a fan wanted to know Tom Morello’s favorite memory with the late singer since they spent so much time together. The musician responded to the question, saying that his favorite memory was also his first one with Cornell. The story goes back to the Audioslave’s formation process in which they were looking for a new vocalist. So the producer Rick Rubin offered them to work with Cornell, and they wanted to visit him at his house.
Cornell lived in a creepy mansion far from the city center in L.A., and Morello thought they were with the Adams family once he stepped into the house. The atmosphere freaked Rubin out, and they even wanted to leave. However, they stayed and realized that Cornell was the most likable person they had met. Thus, their meeting for the first time became the guitarist’s favorite moment.
In Morello’s words, he said:
“When Rage broke up, Brad, Tim, and I still wanted to play together, and we kept listening to Badmotorfinger. Chris had an amazing voice, but he had dark, Edgar Allan Poe poetry to him; we wondered what he was really like, so we decided to go talk to him. Rick Rubin came with us, and he doesn’t leave the house for anything unless it’s in a Rolls Royce inside another Rolls Royce, but he’s in my van.
Chris lived in L.A. at the top of the last and loneliest mountain, it was dusk, and the sunlight was going, and this mansion he lived in was creepy as hell, the gates just opened like Addams Family-style, and we drove in, and there is Chris, 6’2 and a half, lanky of the frame, dark of countenance.
He started slowly walking towards us, and Rick freaked out and went, ‘Let’s get the f*ck out of here!’ We stayed; he was the most loving and generous guy, and we were in a band for six years together. That’s my first memory of him.”
While Audioslave was still together, Tom Morello and Chris Cornell released three studio albums with the band, which were successful to some degree. Many fans liked their music and chemistry, and both musicians bonded over their artistry which is why the ending of their music and friendship is heartbreaking.