During a very touching moment of the 2017 Billboard Music Awards, Imagine Dragons paid tribute to the late Chris Cornell. After frontman Dan Reynolds called the Soundgarden singer an ‘innovator,’ he asked everyone to honor Chris with a moment of silence.
“Although tonight is a time to celebrate the music and artists of the past year, it’s also a time to recall a member of our community we lost this past week,” Dan Reynolds, 29, lead singer for Imagine Dragons, said during the May 21 broadcast. Though the Billboard Awards were, to that point, a night of fun and joy, Dan wasn’t going to let the night go without honoring Chris Cornell, 52. The Soundgarden and Audioslave singer was found dead on May 18 from an apparent suicide, and Dan was still reeling from losing such a “true innovator.”
“[Chris was a] musical architect and pioneer on the cutting edge of the Seattle grunge movement,” the Imagine Dragons singer said. “He was a prolific songwriter, a legendary performer, a singer who had a voice for the ages, and a philanthropist, whose Chris and Vicky Cornell Foundation helped so many children around the world. …We send our respects as well as our love to Chris’ family at this time. Please join us in a moment of silence to remember Chris Cornell.” From there, the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada, fell silent out of respect for a man whose music influenced so many.
“There is no artist, especially in the alternative sphere, who hasn’t been affected by Chris and what he’s done for the rock scene, the grunge scene or bringing alternative music to a mainstream place,” Dan told HollywoodLife.com’s sister site, Variety, while at the KROQ Weenie Roast on May 20. And also, as a humanitarian I think there is so much Chris has done that people don’t realize. … As he’s passed, I’ve been looking into his life, and it’s really been astounding to me the level of philanthropic efforts he and his wife made. I hope that trail continues on forever and I’m sure it will continue to affect and resonate.”
News of Imagine Dragons’ Cornell Tribute broke days before the BBMAs, with reports stating the band would say a few words before performing their hit song, “Believer.” Yet, when the curtain rose and the band broke into song, many fans watching were upset. “Hey Billboard Music Awards and Imagine Dragons, what happened to the Chris Cornell Tribute?” many fans Tweeted, according to Metro. Even when they got the moment of silence, some fans weren’t pleased with what they thought was a “mediocre” tribute.
What did you think about Imagine Dragons’ frontman asking for a moment of silence at the BBMAs, HollywoodLifers? Do you think that was a proper tribute to Chris?