Benefit show planned for the Ottawa Distress Centre at House of Targ

July 24, 2017

When a beloved musician dies, it always hits close to home—our lives are wrapped up in the art they gave us, and art, after all, is one of the things we use to find a better understanding of life and the world around us. In formative years, it’s sometimes those voices that provide the only real clarity we can find when life is anything but clear. For Gen-Xers and Millennials, two artists who provided that guidance during the past few decades recently committed suicide: lead singer of Soundgarden and Audioslave Chris Cornell, and Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington.

Those losses are the reason that a group of musicians in Ottawa are banding together to raise funds and awareness for the Ottawa Distress Centre, suicide prevention, and mental health resources, CBC reports. The show will take place on Aug. 30 at the House of Targ. Organizer Tony Caballero, who drums for the local band Quiet Crimes and is a big Soundgarden fan, explained to the CBC why it felt important for them to put the night together. “Musicians’ deaths don’t really hit us hard because we feel like we know them, they hit us harder because they help us get to know ourselves. And that’s why it feels so personal.” He also says the band recently had a friend pass away “under such circumstances.”

Bennington took his own life by hanging this past Thursday on Cornell’s birthday. Cornell died only two months earlier, also committing suicide by hanging. The two musicians were good friends, and Bennington counted Cornell as one of his influences and idols. The Red Rails is one of the other bands that will perform at the benefit, among numerous other groups and solo artists. The show is being billed as the Chris Cornell Tribute Benefit for Suicide Prevention.

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About the Author

Matt Williams

Matt Williams is a writer and photographer. Born and raised on the Prairies in Winnipeg, he’s slowly made his way farther and farther east, spending a few years covering music in Toronto before running clear out of country and ending up on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean. In between, he’s made numerous detours, interviewing and photographing countless artists across North America and beyond. He heads up Amplify’s Instrumental series, where he talks with musicians about the relationships they’ve formed with their most important tools.

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