Billy Corgan Questions Why Chris Cornell Really Died


Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan laid out his own potential scenario of why Chris Cornell may have died by suicide in a new Howard Stern interview, but also said it may not have been suicide. Corgan also discussed his falling out with Chris Cornell. Alternative Nation transcribed his remarks.

Howard Stern: I was wondering, because you yourself got to the point that you were suicidal, when you see a guy like Chris Cornell kill himself, does that trigger anything inside of you?

Billy Corgan: Yeah.

Howard: What did it it do to you?

Billy: I know not everybody – it’s hard to put into words, this is my own version of it, right. Not everybody agrees that he killed himself, but let’s say, because that’s what people say, the police said he killed himself. I stood in front of that mirror 1,000 times just like he did, kind of an okay gig, you ain’t getting any younger. They weren’t playing the arena, they were playing a theater. I’ve been on those shit tours. You have to be an older band to know what I mean by that.

I know there’s a lot of people who would love to play for 2,500 people, but when you’ve been at the top, and you’re somewhere on the other side. Whether they were going to have a comeback, or they were just out doing whatever they were doing, I’m not judging. What I’m saying is I’ve been there many nights, where even the highest heights, you look in the mirror and say this is just not worth it. I couldn’t in a million years tell you why it’s not worth it, something inside you just says this is not what I signed up for.

Everybody else thinks this is great, but it doesn’t feel great to me, and I don’t know what to do about that. In my version of reality, he made a decision in that moment that took his life. I’ve been in that same exact spot 1,000 times, so it made sense to me, even though obviously suicide is the thing that makes no sense, particularly with the devastation that it leaves behind, but that’s the way that I see it. I’m one of the other people can say, I know what that feels like, am I wrong, or am I making up a fantasy? It’s completely possible, but that’s my version of what happened.

You can call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.