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Chris Cornell Posthumously Rules Mainstream Rock Songs Chart With Guns N’ Roses Cover

"Patience," a GNR hit in 1989, leads three years after Cornell's death.

More than three years after his death, Chris Cornell posthumously reaches No. 1 on Billboard‘s Mainstream Rock Songs airplay chart.

The late Soundgarden and Audioslave frontman’s cover of Guns N’ Roses “Patience,” recorded before his May 2017 death, rises 2-1 on the Mainstream Rock Songs list dated Oct. 3.

It’s Cornell’s second No. 1 as a soloist and first as a solo lead. He previously ruled for two weeks as a featured vocalist on Zac Brown Band‘s “Heavy Is the Head” in May 2015. Prior to “Patience,” Cornell had risen as high as No. 2 as a lead artist with “Nearly Forgot My Broken Heart” in November 2015.


As the lead singer of Soundgarden, Cornell ruled Mainstream Rock Songs six times between 1994 and 2013, as well as twice while fronting Audioslave in 2003 and 2005.

Cornell’s posthumous No. 1 follows a similar leader for Falling in Reverse, whose “Popular Monster” led the list in May after the death of guitarist Derek Jones in April.

Concurrently, “Patience,” a hit at all three rock radio formats, ranks at No. 30 on Alternative Airplay, after reaching No. 30, and rises 35-30 on the Adult Alternative Songs airplay tally. On the all-rock-format, audience-based Rock Airplay chart, it bullets at its No. 4 high with 5.3 million audience impressions, up 3%, according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data.

“Patience” was originally recorded by Guns N’ Roses for the band’s 1988 album G N’ R Lies. It reached No. 4 on the all-format Billboard Hot 100 in June 1989, after hitting No. 7 on Mainstream Rock Songs that March, 31 years before Cornell would take it to No. 1.

Cornell died by suicide on May 18, 2017.