Published Jun 07, 2017Pearl Jam frontman Eddie Vedder has been alluding to the death of fellow grunge icon Chris Cornell throughout his current European tour, but last night (June 6) at the Hammersmith Apollo in London, Vedder directly addressed his friend's passing.
Speaking to the crowd, he acknowledged that he'd been avoiding talking about the loss of his "really close friend," then opened up about his brotherly relationship with Cornell.
According to the Pearl Jam message boards, he told the crowd:
I grew up as four boys, four brothers, and I lost my brother two years ago tragically like that in an accident. After that and losing a few other people, I'm not good at it, meaning… I have not been willing to accept the reality and that's just how I'm dealing with it.
So I want to be there for the family, be there for the community, be there for my brothers in my band, certainly the brothers in his band. But these things will take time, and my friend is going to be gone forever.
These things take time and I just want to send this out to everyone who was affected by it, and they all back home and here appreciate it so deeply, the support and the good thoughts of a man who was a … he wasn't just a friend, he was someone I looked up to like my older brother.
Vedder went on to elaborate on some of the incredibly strong memories of Cornell that he's been reliving since his death. He continued:
About two days after the news, I think it was the second night, we were sleeping in this little cabin near the water, a place he would've loved. And all these memories started coming in about 1:30 a.m., like woke me up. Like big memories, memories I would think about all the time. Like the memories were big muscles. And then I couldn't stop the memories. And trying to sleep, it was like if the neighbours had the music playing and you couldn't stop it.
But then it was fine, because then it got into little memories. It just kept going and going and going. And I realized how lucky I was to have hours worth of… You know, if each of these memories was quick… I had hours of them. How fortunate was I? And I didn't want to be sad, I wanted to be grateful, not sad. I'm still thinking about those memories, and I will live with those memories in my heart and I will love him forever.
Footage of the emotional speech itself has yet to surface, but you can watch a video of the thunderous applause it received below.