He helped millions of people around the world with his music and his very personal lyrics, the voice of Linkin Park, Chester Bennington will not resonate anymore.
He was certainly a role model for everyone who knew him and Linkin Park, or a hero, but Chester Bennington will most be remembered as one of the greatest singers and performers in music. With more than 100 million copies sold worldwide, Linkin Park is one of the most popular rock bands and the world’s best-selling music artists since the beginning of the 2000’s.
A UNIQUE TALENT
It was in 1999 that everything started for Bennington when he joined a band that would later be called Linkin Park. It was also the year when the band officially starts as a whole. “I knew Chester Bennington was going to change my life from the moment he opened his mouth to sing”, recalls Mike Shinoda, multi-instrumentalist and rapper of the band. “[…] Chester was so great that day, the guy who was waiting to try out after him just left. He knew.” This is how the journey started for the band and their debut album Hybrid Theory released in 2000 with 30 million copies sold, making it “the best-selling rock album of the 21st century.” A long story of joy and success that lasted until 2017 and the year Bennington passed away.
A UNIQUE CONNECTION
The band is known for its meaningful, dark but honest lyrics, the pain and the struggles of its frontman set in songs that are today for every hardcore fan masterpieces or classics like songs such as In the End, Crawling and of course Numb, the anthem for a whole generation. It is through these songs that many fans find out a way to escape their lives and find refuge. That is how Bennington helped so many people who were just kids when they first heard the band and are now young adults or adults.
But Bennington did not only save the lives of millions of fans through his words and his music, but also through charitable events. In 2005, the band founded Music for Relief just after the 2004 Indian Ocean tsunami to help victims of natural disasters, wildlife and the environment. Since then, the band have supported and helped more than thousands of natural disaster victims and raised more than 9 million dollars through their charity shows. The band is very involved in environmental issues and climate change and have also planted “over 1.3 million trees to help reduce climate change.”
A UNIQUE STORY
Chester Charles Bennington was born in Phoenix, Arizona on March 20, 1976 but moved in with his mother after his parents divorced when he was 11. Bennington suffered from this and other trauma and started abusing drugs and alcohol. Their debut album Hybrid Theory thus follows lyrical themes about Bennington’s drug addiction and the divorce of his parents. Nevertheless, the album was written to talk about “universal feelings, emotions, and experiences,” since Bennington never wanted to point out any culprits. In an interview with Rolling Stone in early 2002, Bennington said “it’s easy to fall into that thing – ‘poor, poor me’, that’s where songs like ‘Crawling’ come from […] I don’t say ‘you’ at any point. It’s about how I’m the reason that I feel this way. There’s something inside me that pulls me down.”
A UNIQUE HUMAN BEING
The Californian singer left behind a huge legacy of songs and styles that revolutionised music, and millions of crying fans around the world that were touched by his talent. In a beautiful but heart-breaking letter, his bandmates address Bennington a last goodbye and thank you “we’re trying to remind ourselves that the demons who took you away from us were always part of the deal. After all, it was the way you sang about those demons that made everyone fall in love with you in the first place.” Bennington had been suffering from depression for many years and ended up committing suicide on July 20, 2017 while hanging out at his house in Palos Verdes, California. He left behind his wife and his six children.
A TRUE HERO
The band paid a last tribute to their singer in October 2017 with a special show in his honour where other artists joined them for ‘Linkin Park and friends celebrate life in honor of Chester Bennington.’ Fans have shown their unconditional love and support to the band through social media and never missed an opportunity to honour Bennington’s memory by gathering and playing their songs. Many other artists from every genre of music paid tribute to Bennington, which shows how much he influenced and touched so many lives.
GOOD TO KNOW:
“Sing like an angel, scream like a demon.” This is how many people have compared Chester Bennington’s voice underlining his ability for both clear vocal parts and screaming parts. Many people, including fans and even celebrities have paid tribute to his talent and his unparalleled voice. Pop singer Rihanna even wrote on her Instagram post “literally the most impressive talent I’ve ever seen live! Vocal beast!” Unfortunately, depression and mental health are still taboo in our society, so people avoid raising awareness about it. It was not surprising that Bennington suffered from depression for many years. But as a fan stressed, what is more surprising is that a man was able to save millions of lives, while millions of lives could not save him. Since then, Linkin Park have created a fund to help raise awareness about depression and suicide prevention. In his very last song, Bennington sang “who cares if one more light goes out…?” Well, we do Chester.