Last night, as I was chatting with my best friend about her upcoming wedding (sigh) in a nice little cafe, I saw a tweet about Chester Bennington‘s death due to apparent suicide. My first instinct was that this is one of those hoax deaths, often spread over social media. But soon enough, it was confirmed that he has actually died.
The news still hasn’t sunk in. Songs by Linkin Park, Backstreet Boys and Enrique Iglesias were my introduction to English music. In The End, Numb, Crawling and Leave Out All The Rest are the songs I still play to sing out loudly when I’m feeling angsty. I can never thank him enough for creating songs that resonate with an entire generation.
Those who are not aware of his music, and even those who are might not know some trivia about him. So here are 9 facts about the life he has lived –
1) He was born in Arizona. His mother was a nurse, while his father was a police detective who worked with child sex abuse cases.
2) Chester discovered his artistic side while trying to distract himself from the bullying he faced in school
3) His drug addiction started soon after his parents got divorced. In 2011, he claimed to have quit, noting: “I just don’t want to be that person anymore.”
4) At the time of Chester and his ex-wife’s wedding, they were too poor to afford rings so they got matching tattoos on their ring fingers instead.
5) He worked at a Burger King before starting his career as a professional musician.
6) Chester first gained prominence as a vocalist following the release of Linkin Park’s debut album, Hybrid Theory, in 2000 (yep, the one with In The End and Crawling).
7) Linkin Park’s first gig was at The Whisky a Go Go, in LA, which was also the launching pad for legendary bands like Motley Crüe, The Doors and Guns ‘N Roses.
8) Chester has made cameo appearances in Crank and Crank: High Voltage
9) His least favourite Linkin Park song is – One Step Closer
As a tribute to one of the finest musicians the world has seen, Vh1 will be playing Chester Bennington songs all day. Tune in and sing along.