Chris Cornell to Receive Posthumous Human Rights Award
Late Soundgarden frontman Chris Cornell will be the first recipient of a new human rights award, its presenters have confirmed. The singer – who took his own life at the age of 52 following a concert in Michigan in May – will be honored with the inaugural Promise Award by the Los Angeles Committee of Human Rights Watch on Nov. 14, during the Voices for Justice Human Rights Watch Annual Dinner at the Beverly Hilton Hotel.
System of a Down frontman Serj Tankian will present the award, which recognizes Cornell’s song “The Promise,” (video above) which was the title track to the first major film about the Armenian Genocide. Tankian also contributed to the movie soundtrack. Committee director Justin Connolly said: “We are proud to name this award after ‘The Promise,’ and present the inaugural award to Chris Cornell’s inspiring song.”
Cornell donated all profits from the song to the International Rescue Committee. Speaking a month before his death, he told Billboard, “I think it’s weird, period, just being a musician or a songwriter or celebrity and getting involved in any kind of cause that can be referred to as a cause celebre. You’re always walking this line of, is this convenient to me or am I actually doing some good in the world? And the point always is to do some good in the world, so that was an easy decision. I think it probably started before one word of the script was written, which was: This is not a vehicle for commerce from any angle.”