Brandi Carlile just released a new album, In These Silent Days, but she’s already thinking about her next big career goal: becoming Soundgarden’s singer. While on the Rolling Stone Music Now podcast, the alt-country singer volunteered to take over vocals for Chris Cornell, who died in 2017. She said she “would make the time” to tour as Soundgarden’s singer and added that she “loved [Cornell] so much. [She] was so devastated when he left us.”
Many bands have had prolific singers filling in for lead vocalists who’ve passed. Dead & Company inexplicably went with John Mayer as the co-lead vocalist, and Queen have Adam Lambert filling in for Freddie Mercury. But Carlile makes perfect sense to fill in for Cornell. She’s from right outside Seattle and has idolized the band for decades, as she explained on the podcast. It’s not easy to match Cornell’s powerful, instantly recognizable voice, but hers fits in well with Soundgarden’s songs—and she’s no stranger to performing with the band, either.
Carlile covered the band’s classic song “Black Hole Sun” at the 2019 Cornell tribute show I Am The Highway. She also recorded a version of the song—as well as “Searching With My Good Eye Closed”—with the surviving members of Soundgarden for Record Store Day 2020. Recently on tour, the band members joined Carlile onstage to perform both tracks.
In other Carlile news, the singer-songwriter is set to perform Saturday Night Live on October 23, with Jason Sudeikis on hosting duties. She excitedly tweeted, “I’ve been waiting my whole life to make this announcement! Live from New York it’s Saturday night!! Can you even believe we get to be on the same night as the wonderful @jasonsudeikis? Can’t wait to hug Ted Lasso’s neck!!”