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Chris Cornell Revisits Rock With New "Long Gone" Remix

May 4, 2009 4:17 PM ET

Chris Cornell has dipped his toes back into recording guitar-rock with a complete makeover of his single "Long Gone." Completely re-recorded and re-launched by producer Howard Benson (Hoobastank, My Chemical Romance, Papa Roach), "Long Gone" has turned from a synthy Timbaland tearjerker into a sensitive modern rock ballad with a jacked-up tempo. The stream and video are available today, with a digital single following on iTunes tomorrow.

According to Cornell, Howard Benson was a fan of his recent Scream album and approached the singer about creating a new version. With drummer-to-the stars Josh Freese in tow, the team did some quick sessions in a pair of L.A. studios. "I just went in and redid it," says Cornell. "I spent more time hanging out with him talking about music than actually working."

Tracks from Scream have been tweaked and remixed by slew of superstar DJs — including Steve Aoki, Kleerup and DJ AM — but this is the first time that one of its notoriously guitar-deficient tracks has been given a traditional rock song reimagining. "It's just a different suit of clothes," says Cornell about the switch. "To me it's very much the same song, it makes me feel the same way. You can approach something from such a different way, and the song itself lives so strong through it."

Cornell is expected to play "Long Gone" for his appearance on the Late Show With David Letterman this Friday, but is unsure of which version he will perform as of now.

Related Stories:

Chris Cornell on Soundgarden Reunion: "You Never Know"
Chris Cornell on Timbaland-Produced Scream: "I Think Fans Will Come Around to the Concept"

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Song Stories

“Santa Monica”

Everclear | 1996

After his brother and girlfriend both died of drug overdoses, Art Alexakis -- depressed and hooked on drugs himself -- jumped off the Santa Monica Pier in California, determined to die. "It was really stupid," said the Everclear frontman, who would further explore his personal emotional journey in the song "Father of Mine." "I went under the water. Then I said, 'I don't wanna die.'" The song, declaring "Let's swim out past the breakers/and watch the world die," was intended as a manifesto for change, Alexakis said. "Let the world do what it's gonna do and just live on our own."

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