Mike Shinoda Ready to Face Playing Chester Bennington-Inspired Songs Head On
Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda is currently prepping the release of his debut solo album Post Traumatic. The vocalist recently opened up about how the effort addresses the death of his bandmate and friend Chester Bennington and says that while it may be difficult to delve into the music, he's ready to face it head on.
In a new interview with Entertainment Tonight in Canada, Shinoda explained the writing process for the album started “in a really dark place.” Following Bennington’s death, he discloses, “I wasn’t leaving my house. It felt very claustrophobic, having lost one of my closest friends and collaborators. We associate who we are, to some degree with what we do, so I felt very lost.”
Shinoda adds, “The experience of this last year has been crazy, and I wanted to put it into music, not only to just put my stamp on it and say, ‘This happened,’ but also to allow the fans and the people who have been along for the ride, to guide them on that journey in terms of keeping up with my narrative or understanding where I’m at.”
The Linkin Park vocalist also shares how he deals with the grief of losing such a close friend. “Sometimes you have to just feel sad and you have to just wait until it kind of stops happening,” Shinoda says, adding, “I had terrible days, and now I have less bad days and eventually, I will find a new ‘normal,’ like a stasis. And that is the journey I’m on. In this album, you’ll see it happening. As I go out and start touring and talking to fans and doing different conversations with different people, it’ll evolve.”
As for how he'll approach playing the very personal music that came with dealing with Bennington's death moving forward, Shinoda stated, "I've had that question in my head. If they become too hard to play, then I'll take them out, but I'm going to start really going for it and facing it head on and seeing what happens. What I realized at one point in this whole thing is I was apprehensive about meeting up with large groups of fans because I knew a lot of them would be crying or saying, 'I'm sorry' or 'Why? What happened?' and I was scared of that until I did it and then I realized what a cathartic experience it was for them and myself."
Last month, Shinoda unveiled a video for his song “Crossing a Line.” His debut album, Post Traumatic, will be released on June 15.
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