Condolences pour in for late Seattle rocker Chris Cornell

Whether he was wailing in one of Soundgarden's Zeppelin-esque stompers or crooning some delicate ballad, Cornell's four-octave range was an undeniable instrument that always made him stand out from his rock "n" roll peers.

Cornell, a Seattle native, wrestled with heroin and other drugs as well as depression most of his life, once even calling a metal magazine to confirm a tour cancellation from a payphone at a rehab clinic.

But why Vedder? Cornell's death is just the latest in a long line of grunge musicians who have passed away, many of them at relatively young ages.

Chris Cornell died Wednesday (May 18) in what has been reported as an apparent suicide.

Elton John: "Shocked and saddened by the sudden death of Chris Cornell".

The Black Hole Sun singer, who was best known for fronting Soundgarden and Audioslave, was discovered dead at his Detroit hotel just hours after playing his last concert in the city (footage below).

Cornell wrote and performed "You Know My Name", the theme song for Casino Royale, the first James Bond film starring Daniel Craig. Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry tweeted: "Very sad news about Chris Cornell today". Cornell loved the cover so much that he often played "Rusty Cage" live using the arrangement put together by Johnny Cash, who was one of the grunge rocker's childhood heroes.

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Police spokesman Michael Woody tells The Associated Press on Thursday morning that he can't provide details on what led investigators to make that determination, but noted there were "basic things observed at the scene".

The 52-year-old Cornell performed Wednesday night in Detroit with Soundgarden.

Officers said the friend forced open a door and found Cornell in the bathroom. "It appears as though a family friend was checking up on Cornell at his wife's request". The statement said the family would be working closely with the medical examiner to determine the cause and asked for privacy.

Audioslave disbanded in 2007, but Cornell and Soundgarden reunited in 2010 and released the band's sixth studio album, "King Animal" in 2012.

Soundgarden disbanded in 1997 due to tensions in the band, and Cornell pursued a solo career. When the band split up after several platinum albums, Cornell worked on solo albums that reflected his love of everything from sensitive troubadour Jeff Buckley to beat master Timbaland, and joined all the non-singing Rage Against the Machine guys in Audioslave for three albums.

In later years, he and his wife set up the Chris & Vicky Cornell Foundation, which helps vulnerable children impacted by drugs, poverty and neglect.

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