Chris Cornell Is “Facing the Reality” on Temple of the Dog’s First Tour

ABC/Randy HolmesTemple of the Dog's reunion tour has been an emotional experience for Chris Cornell. Not only is he performing songs with a band he hasn't played with in 25 years, the tour has made the Soundgarden vocalist come to terms with the death of Mother Love Bone frontman Andrew Wood, for whom Cornell founded Temple of the Dog.

"I didn't deal well with Andy's death," Cornell tells The Guardian. "After he died, numerous times I'd be driving and I would look out the window and I thought I saw him. It would take me five minutes to update to the moment and realize, 'no, he's actually dead.'"

"This tour, in a sense, is the dealing," he continues. "It's facing the reality."

Throughout the tour, Temple of the Dog has included covers of Mother Love Bone songs in their set. They're also, of course, playing cuts from the band's lone album.

"The evolved, live versions of the songs hadn’t existed until now," Cornell explains. "I'm finding aspects to the song I never knew existed. That's the miracle of music. No one can reinterpret a Picasso but a song can be remixed and covered and interpreted in an infinite number of ways. It's a living thing."

Along with Cornell, Temple of the Dog features his Soundgarden band mate Matt Cameron, plus Pearl Jam's Jeff Ament, Stone Gossard and Mike McCready. Eddie Vedder lent his vocals to the band's signature song "Hunger Strike," but he hasn't appeared on the tour so far. During Temple's performance of "Hunger Strike" at Madison Square Garden, the crowd sang Vedder's part.

"It was one of the most emotional moments in the show," Cornell says.

Temple of the Dog's tour will conclude November 20-21 with a two night stand in Seattle.

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