The Chic frontman and disco legend was speaking to NME ahead of today’s Ivor Novello Awards in London, when he opened up about their relationship and the loss of the grunge icon frontman of Soundgarden and Audioslave. Cornell was reported dead today, aged just 52-years-old.
“Chris and I didn’t do music together,” Rodgers told NME. “We were friends – we hung out together. We’d go to dinner, we’d go shopping. Sure, I’d go to there concerts and stand backstage like a fan and go ‘wow, my boy is amazing – but our friendship was much, much more personal. We were probably working our way towards making a record, but what was great about my friendship with Chris, was that because we were just bros, just friends that you’d call up and go ‘hey man, I’m in town, come on over and have dinner and let’s hang out with the kids and stuff’… I’m still just sort of pushing it aside.
— Nile Rodgers (@nilerodgers) May 18, 2017
“I’m not really away because I’ve got a phone call from a really close mutual friend. They were crying and I couldn’t understand her. So I don’t know any details yet, but I’m sure I’ll find out as soon as I get home tonight.”
Speaking of Cornell’s extraordinary talent, Rodgers continued: “I used to go to shows just to hear him sing. I’ve worked with some of the best people in the world, and one of the most fun nights of my life, was listening to Chris Cornell sing at the Troubadour in LA, about maybe three years at some surprise little gig. I can’t remember what song it was, but he took some famous Lennon and McCartney song and he put it in 6/8.
“He sang it, and he killed it. I went backstage and I said ‘dude, you’ve got to be pretty bold to do that’. He said ‘what do you think about it in 6/8? And he said ‘it’s better!'”
The world of music has come out in tribute of Cornell, while it is reported that his death is currently being investigated as a suicide.