Chris Cornell's death after show in Detroit 'sudden and unexpected'

Cornell was cornerstone of Seattle grunge rock scene

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Musicians Chris Cornell (L) and Tom Morello of Audioslave perform at Prophets of Rage and Friends' Anti Inaugural Ball at the Taragram Ballroom on January 20, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images)

DETROIT - Chris Cornell died after performing Wednesday in front of a sold-out Fox Theatre crowd in Detroit. 

In a statement to The Associated Press, the musician's representative Brian Bumbery called the death "sudden and unexpected" and said his wife and family were shocked by it. The statement said the family would be working closely with the medical examiner to determine the cause and asked for privacy.

Cornell was a Grammy award-winning singer, songwriter, guitarist, composer and lyricist who was a cornerstone of Seattle's 80s and 90s grunge rock scene. He was the lead singer for prominent bands including Soundgarden and Audioslave. 

Cornell also fronted the band Temple of the Dog, which was formed as a tribute to his late friend Andrew Wood. Wood was the lead singer of Mother Love Bone. Pearl Jam's Stone Gossard, Jeff Ament, Mike McCready, Matt Cameron and Eddie Vedder all performed with Cornell's Temple of the Dog. Gossard and Ament were past members of Mother Love Bone. 

The close relationship of these musicians cemented the Seattle rock scene as one of the most influential in the late 20th century. But as Pearl Jam rose to prominence as one of the most popular rock bands in the world, Cornell's Soundgarden broke up in 1997. They wouldn't reunite for another 13 years. 

Audioslave was Cornell's next project. He was invited to join the group by former Rage Against the Machine members Tom Morello, Tim Commerford, and Brad Wilk. They produced three studio albums between 2002 and 2006 before breaking up in 2007. 

Meanwhile, Cornell's solo career spanned two decades. He released five studio albums, the latest in 2015.

Finally, after getting back together in 2010, Soundgarden's long-awaited "King Animal" album was released in 2012. It was the band's first album in 16 years.

They were on tour when Cornell was found dead in his Detroit hotel room. The band was scheduled to play Friday night in Columbus, Ohio. 

Here is "Hunger Strike" by Temple of the Dog. Cornell's voice is at its best as he is supported by Vedder: 

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