The whole world was shocked when last month, news broke of the death by suicide of one of the pioneers of early 2000’s nu-metal style rock music and frontman of Linkin Park, Chester Bennington. Immediately social media was dominated by thoughts and prayers to his family, well wishes for those close to him and of course memories and sentimental goodbyes to the man himself.
An entire month later to the day, social media is also reporting on one of the more poignant and heart warming tributes to the man as Jay-Z finished off his set at Staffordshire’s V Festival by performing his mega hit in which he collaborated with Linkin Park, ‘Numb/Encore’. It was in November of 2004 that the unlikely pairing came to release a six track EP called ‘Collision Course’ in which the concept was to take established songs by both parties and merge them seamlessly into a whole new track. The breakout track was ‘Numb/Encore’ and it revitalised two successful recordings and gave them new life. ‘Numb’ was a masterpiece from Linkin Park’s second album ‘Meteora’ and still now gives you goose bumps upon hearing it. The sentiment, angst and pain behind the song appears amplified since his passing and the track stands as an even more colossal work with its now more tragic and reflective meaning. So when Jay-Z as part of his first performance since Bennington’s death, changed the tone heading towards the end of the set which had heavily featured tracks from his brand new album ‘4.44’, he called for the lights to be dimmed, paid tribute and implored the crowd in attendance to sing so loud he’d hear them from heaven before heading into his rendition of their classic collaboration. A classy, fitting and respectful tribute, making sure Chester Bennington’s memory lives on and after a V Festival capacity crowd all joined together to sing along with Bennington’s voice and lyrics, my only regret is that I wasn’t there to be a part of it. Magical.
Words by Stuart Green (@mojo20_music)