Howard Stern interviewed Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda on Tuesday, finally getting more background on Chester Bennington’s 2017 suicide.
Shinoda was emotional after Chester’s death, even feeling anger. “There were points where I felt that way … and that’s natural,” he said.
HowardStern.com recapped moe of the interview. While the rapper knew his bandmate struggled with depression, he didn’t know to what extent. “Nobody knew the depths of it,” Shinoda explained before detailing his and Chester’s different experiences as outsiders. “I felt like I was an outsider because I was like a mixed-race kid that didn’t have a community to belong to … He was outside because he was scrawny, he was like picked on, he was bullied all the time.”
Shinoda also discussed Chester’s addiction. “It was hard, and in the midst of all that … he’d just go missing and come back obliterated, like you couldn’t even talk to him,” Mike remembered. “There was an element of Chester that was very fun sometimes when he was that way and then usually the next day it would be like so dark. He’s super hungover, he’s angry at everybody, yelling at everybody.”
With Chester’s death, Shinoda’s career as a musician was put into question. “For me, it just felt like too much,” he told Howard. “To get back on it and try to do some version of music and also be seen through the lens of what had happened … it was like being a member of a club that I didn’t want to join.”
But when Shinoda remembers his late friend in his element musically, he looks back fondly. “He was born for this,” he noted of Bennington with a big smile. “I feel like him singing vocals on albums and on stage was as happy as it got. Like, that was as good as it fucking got, so I always feel good about that.”