Linkin Park frontman dies in LA at 41

  

Linkin Park lead singer Chester Bennington, who sold millions of albums with an ever-changing mix of hard rock, hip-hop and rap, was found dead in his home near Los Angeles on Thursday, the Los Angeles County coroner said Thursday. He was 41.

Coroner spokesman Brian Elias said authorities are investigating Bennington''''s death as an apparent suicide at Palos Verdes Estates, a small coastal city near Los Angeles but no additional details are available.

Band co-founder and producer Mike Shinoda said on Twitter he was "shocked and saddened."

"Chester Bennington was an artist of extraordinary talent and charisma, and a human being with a huge heart and a caring soul. Our thoughts and prayers are with his beautiful family, his band-mates and his many friends," Warner Bros. CEO and Chairman Cameron Stang said in a statement.

The Grammy Award-winning group sold 10 million copies of their 2000 debut, "Hybrid Theory," and then another 4 million with 2003''''s multiplatinum "Meteora." Both albums explored feelings of frustration and fury.

Bennington''''s voice could soar with piercing strength or descend to a whisper. Rolling Stone once called it a "shrapnel-laced howl that sounds like it comes from someone twice his size."

The band also sold millions with its remix album, "Reanimation," and its mash-up record with Jay-Z, "Collision Course." They won Grammys for best hard rock performance in 2001 for "Crawling" and best rap/sung collaboration for "Numb/Encore" in 2005. Linkin Park was on tour and had a show at New York''''s Citi Field scheduled for next week with Blink 182.

Bennington struggled with drug and alcohol addictions at various times during his life. He said he had been sexually abused as a child and was homeless for months before the band found fame.

Linkin Park released their most recent album, "One More Light," in May. It was a CD that divided critics and fans alike for its embrace of moody pop. One song on the album, "Heavy," opens with the words: "I don''''t like my mind right now."

Although the band had always experimented with different sounds, some claimed Linkin Park had sold out, which Bennington denied. "One More Light" became the band''''s fifth No. 1 album debut on the Billboard 200.

"If you like the music, fantastic. If you don''''t like it, that''''s your opinion too. Fantastic. If you''''re saying we''''re doing what we''''re doing for a commercial or monetary reason, trying to make success out of some formula. then stab yourself in the face!" he told NME magazine.

Bennington was close friends with Chris Cornell, who died by hanging earlier this year, and performed Leonard Cohen''''s "Hallelujah" at the Soundgarden singer''''s memorial in late May. 


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