Last night I was watching Autopsy: The Last Hours of...with my favorite Medical Examiner Dr. Michael Hunter. I happened to turn it on right when the episode featuring the sad suicide of Soundgarden's lead singer and guitarist Chris Cornell.
Dr. Michael Hunter
Autopsy: The Last Hours interviewed our pal Detroit Rock Photographer Ken Settle. Ken photographed that last Soundgarden show in Detroit at the Fox Theater.
I hadn't realized that Ken Settle was at that last Soundgarden show. After I finished watching the episode I found Ken online and we chatted a bit about his thoughts about that night.
RK Ken, how did you come to be interviewed on the Autopsy show?
KS A day or two after that show, it became known that I photographed Chris's last show. I started being asked to do interviews about that experience, including Billboard Magazine, Rolling Stone, and the BBC for a radio show.
The producers for Autopsy in researching for the show saw my photos from the show and the interviews that I had done. They asked me if I would do an interview for the episode they were putting together.
I suggested to them that a good place to shoot the interview would be at The Fillmore Detroit (once known as The State Theatre), because it was the first theatre headlining show that Soundgarden did in Detroit was there.
Ben Doughty, who was a good friend, and also the general manager at the Fillmore, organized the interview for 8 am on March 21, 2018.
We actually did that interview right on the same stage that Chris graced in the early days, with Soundgarden.
I still can't think about that show, or Chris, without getting really emotional.
The man put his entire soul into every performance and when you look back at it, it seemed that he was telling his own story in the songs of Soundgarden.
I STILL feel that Chris showed moments of pure joy on stage that final night like I had never seen him do before. I felt it when I was photographing him. Although some moments he also seemed REALLY very insular and deep into his own thoughts on stage that night as well. It was such a tragedy. A very sad tragedy that we lost him that young. He was a once in a lifetime singer and such a great guy.After it was on the news that Chris had died, fans came by The Fox Theatre and had a vigil and left tributes to his memory. Here are some photos of that.
RK Thanks for sharing your experience and photos with us Ken!