Chris Cornell’s extensive song catalog includes works within Soundgarden, Audioslave, Temple of the Dog and solo material. In case that wasn’t enough, Cornell has also been a dynamic contributor to various films. His latest project in this space was composing the theme for The Promise, which debuted on September 11th at the Toronto film festival and stars Christian Bale.
Having music serve as a complimentary piece that truly enhances what’s on screen is not technically new to Cornell. Soundgarden songs “Flower” and “Toy Box” saw their place within the Say Anything soundtrack in 1989. Since then, we’ve seen everything from comedy programs such as Beavis and Butthead to inspirational documentaries like Riding Giants, feature songs from Cornell’s discography.
As far as writing new material specific for films, Cornell explained his process during The Promise debut, “I’ve done enough of them now. I know there’s going to be difficult moments and there will be some moments where everything seems to come together. And then I realize ‘That was awful,’ and I’ll start over from scratch. You know the problem I run into the most is, ‘Am I the right guy for this? Is there a different guy who could tell this story better? And then I get the determination.”
Here’s a look at 10 essential Cornell tracks that were first featured in a film:
10. “Misery Chain” – 12 Years a Slave – 2013 (also via Higher Truth deluxe edition)
9. “Birth Ritual” – Singles – 1992 from Soundgarden (also via Soundgardn/Telephantasm)
8. “The Keeper” – Machine Gun Preacher – 2011
7. “‘Til the Sun Comes Back Around” – 13 Hours – 2016
6. “Blind Dogs” – The Basketball Diaries – 1995 from Soundgarden (also via Soundgarden/Echo of Miles: Scattered Tracks Across the Path)
5. “Live to Rise” – The Avengers – 2012 from Soundgarden (also via Soundgarden/Echo of Miles: Scattered Tracks Across the Path)
4. “The Promise” – The Promise – 2016
— Chris Cornell (@chriscornell) August 22, 2016
3. “You Know My Name” – Casino Royale – 2006 (alternative version also released on Carry On)
2. “Seasons” – Singles – 1992
1. “Sunshower” – Great Expectations – 1998
As for TV series, Cornell has recorded a modern version of the Beatles “Drive My Car” for season two of the stellar new Netflix series, Beat Bugs.
This past April, Cornell covered “Stay With Me Baby,” for the HBO’s Vinyl. About his rendition, Cornell told Vulture, “I was very honored to be asked to record a version of “Stay With Me Baby” for Vinyl. I get to pay tribute to Terry Reid, whose version of the song has been a favorite of mine for many years, and be included on a great soundtrack with an amazing group of artists.”
The vocal on his version of “Stay With Me Baby” is just not fair.