A History of Chester Bennington's Side Projects
Chester Bennington had a long career in the music industry and became a treasured rock icon before his death Thursday (July 20) of an apparent suicide. Though the singer will largely be remembered for his work in Linkin Park, he also ventured into a great deal of smaller bands and side projects throughout his career, and even had a stint as the frontman for Stone Temple Pilots.
Take a look at all of Bennington’s musical projects from throughout his career below:
Sean Dowdell and His Friends?
Long before Bennington’s major-label signing and debut in Linkin Park, the musician played in a variety of ground-level bands. Bennington’s first gig was singing with the band Sean Dowdell and His Friends?, a short-lived project that released a three-track cassette back in 1993.
Following Bennington’s work in Sean Dowdell and His Friends?, he and Downdell went on to form the grunge band Grey Daze and released a series of albums throughout the '90s, including Demo, Wake/Me and No Sun Today.
Bennginton left Grey Daze in 1998, eventually finding himself with an audition to be the lead singer of what became Linkin Park. The rest is history, as the band would become one of the most commercially successful rock bands of the 21st century.
Dead by Sunrise
Amidst the success of Linkin Park, Bennington also began working on material for the side project Dead by Sunrise. Though songs like “Morning After” were written in 2001, further material for the project came into fruition during 2005 when the singer was writing for Linkin Park’s third album Minutes to Midnight, inspiring an entirely new project. Though not as massive as Bennington’s primary band, Dead by Sunrise's “Crawl Back In” hit the Mainstream Rock chart and released music up until 2009.
Stone Temple Pilots
STP sought out Bennington to replace their lead singer Scott Weiland when he left the group in 2013, which was a match made in rock heaven. Bennington played a number of shows with the band and was later officially announced as their new frontman, solidifying his position in the San Diego group. While Bennington performed the band’s usual set list, they also went on to release new music like the High Rise EP, which featured Bennington’s vocals.
Upon joining the band, Bennington told KROQ: “I grew up listening to these guys. When this opportunity came up, it was just like a no-brainer. We couldn't really plan a tour until now because we couldn't let people know what was going on. Now the cat’s out of the bag so we’re going to go out and make more music and go play more shows and have some fun.”