In light of the July 20 news that Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington had died of an apparent suicide, Seether has announced that its fifth-annual Rise Above Festival — which was founded to raise awareness about and funds for suicide prevention — will pay tribute July 22-23 to Bennington and Soundgarden/Audioslave singer Chris Cornell, who died in the same manner on May 18.
“Losing another great rock voice to suicide yesterday is absolutely tragic and heartbreaking,” said Seether leader Shaun Morgan in a statement. “It’s exactly why we are doing what we set out to do this weekend — to build awareness for this mental disease. I started this festival as a tribute to anyone who has lost someone. If this festival does something to help one person reconsider the tragic choice of suicide, then it will be the greatest success of my career. We will honor the memories of Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell, and dedicate this weekend to them.”
Rise Above Festival is a two-day music event in Bangor, Maine, held at Darlington’s Waterfront Pavilion. Korn, Stone Sour and Seether top the bill on July 22; Shinedown, Halestorm and Theory of a Deadman head up the concert on July 23. Multiple other bands are scheduled to perform, including Skillet, Falling in Reverse, Red Sun Rising, Crobot and DragonForce on July 22 and Hellyeah, All That Remains, Pop Evil, Starsetand Avatar on July 23.
Seether launched the event in memory of Morgan’s brother, Eugene Morgan, who committed suicide in 2007. The festival is named after Seether’s song “Rise Above This,” which Morgan wrote about his lost sibling.
Linkin Park member Mike Shinoda confirmed Bennington’s death on Twitter shortly after the news broke yesterday afternoon, writing, “Shocked and heartbroken, but it’s true. An official statement will come out as soon as we have one.”
Bennington — a close friend of Cornell whom the Associated Press reported was godfather to Cornell’s son, Chris — died on what would have been Cornell’s 53rd birthday. Linkin Park dedicated the song “One More Light,” from its new album of the same title, to Cornell when the band performed a concert on Jimmy Kimmel Live! the day of Cornell’s passing. Bennington also performed “Hallelujah” at Cornell’s May 26 funeral service in Los Angeles.