Chris Cornell was a ladies’ man. Over the years, a string of lovers had kept him occupied, but never very satisfied. Tonight he was with a tall blonde who’d been at every show on his last tour. Soundgarden groupies were a dime a dozen, though, even if he broke their hearts. As he closed his eyes with the girl asleep by his side, a lucid dream began to form in his psyche. . . .
Cornell was awakened by a soft rap at the door. The room smelled of perfume, and the touch of red silk swathed his body. The room was dark, except for a sliver of light through the heavy drapes. A woman’s voice broke the silence. “Bittersweet memories, that is all I’m taking with me.” He could make out the silhouette of a woman. “Please don’t cry,” she said. “We both know I’m not what you need.” Just then a man came charging through the door. “Damn right, you’re not!” He was as big as a bodyguard. His stride was swift and powerful towards the bed, and at that moment Cornell knew something terrible was about to happen. As he threw the silks up to protect his face, he could hear Whitney cry out, “I will always love you!” Everything went dark.
When he opened his eyes, Cornell found himself on a crowded New York City street. He realized he was the only man in a sea of beautiful women. He thought to himself, “I am the one.” They gazed at him lovingly at first, but quickly turned on him, lunging for his arms and legs as he flailed and twisted away. He was being hunted like a fox. In the chaos Cornell fell to the ground, and the sea of bodies parted before him to reveal a man standing on a soapbox. Sprawled and bruised on the concrete, Cornell looked up to see the King of Pop twirl on his heels, a single white glove tipping his black fedora. “The smell of sweet perfume, can happen much too soon,” M. J. proclaimed. “Be careful what you do, because the lie becomes the truth.”
The sky began to darken and the earth began to shake. The women were closing in again. Cornell gripped the cement, hoping to wake up from this nightmare.
Suddenly he opened his eyes, drenched in a cold sweat. The blonde was shaking him with anguish in her eyes. “It must have been a nightmare,” Chris explained. But the blonde was not impressed.
“You were screaming, ‘She’s just a girl, who claims that I am the one,'” she said. “What the hell does that mean?!”
Chris Cornell, who’s recently covered both Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson, plays a solo acoustic show Wednesday, Oct. 16, at the Uptown Theatre. 1350 Third St, Napa. 8pm. $65. 707.259.0123.