Temple of the Dog was started by Soundgarden singer Chris Cornell. After the death of his former roommate, Mother Love Bone singer Andrew Wood, Cornell wrote two songs in tribute: "Say Hello 2 Heaven" and "Reach Down". Cornell approached Wood's former bandmates, Stone Gossard and Jeff Ament, with the intention of releasing the songs as a single. The band's lineup was completed by the addition of Soundgarden (and later Pearl Jam) drummer Matt Cameron and future Pearl Jam lead guitarist Mike McCready. The band started rehearsing the songs, as well as re-working some existing material from demos written by Gossard, Ament, and Cameron. One such demo became a song for two bands, recorded as "Footsteps" for Pearl Jam and as "Times of Trouble" for Temple of the Dog. These rehearsals soon led to several new songs, and the planned single soon became a full album. The album and group became known as Temple of the Dog, after a lyric in the Mother Love Bone song, "Man of Golden Words".
Eddie Vedder, who had flown to Seattle to audition to be Pearl Jam's singer, ended up providing backing vocals. "Hunger Strike" became a duet between Cornell and Vedder. Cornell was having trouble with the vocals at practice, when Vedder stepped in. Cornell later said that "he sang half of that song not even knowing that I'd wanted the part to be there and he sang it exactly the way I was thinking about doing it, just instinctively."
In the summer of 1992, the album received new attention. Though the album had been released more than a year earlier, A&M Records realized that they had in their catalog what was essentially a collaboration between Soundgarden and Pearl Jam, who had both risen to mainstream attention in the months since the album's release. A&M decided to re-issue the album and promote "Hunger Strike" as a single, with the video subsequently entering heavy rotation on MTV and MuchMusic. The attention allowed both the album and single to chart on Billboard.
While rehearsing and writing the material for the album, the band played a full show in Seattle at the Off Ramp Caf? on November 13, 1990. In the time since the album's release, the band reformed for short live performances on two occasions where both Soundgarden and Pearl Jam were performing. In October 1991, the band performed "Hunger Strike" at the Foundations Forum showcase. In September 1992, the band performed "Hunger Strike" and "Reach Down" at the last show of that year's Lollapalooza festival in Fairfax, Virginia.
"All Night Thing" (as well as Soundgarden's "Loud Love") appeared in the 1992 film Wayne's World, though not on the soundtrack album.
At a Pearl Jam show on October 28, 2003, Chris Cornell joined them on-stage effectively re-uniting the band (Matt Cameron had been the drummer of Pearl Jam since 2000) for renditions of "Hunger Strike" and "Reach Down". The version of "Reach Down" recorded that night later appeared on Pearl Jam's annual Ten Club Christmas Single that year. Pearl Jam has also been known to perform "Hunger Strike" live without Cornell on rare occasion.
Cornell's post-Soundgarden band, Audioslave, added "Call Me A Dog", "All Night Thing", and "Hunger Strike" to their live set in 2005. Additionally, Cornell added "Say Hello 2 Heaven" to his live set in 2007.
1. Say Hello 2 Heaven
2. Reach Down
3. Hunger Strike
4. Pushin Forward Back
5. Call Me A Dog
6. Times Of Trouble
7. Wooden Jesus
8. Your Savior
9. Four Walled World
10. All Night Thing
One song added by Me:
11. Black Cat
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Temple of the Dog - Live at Off Ramp Cafe (11/13/90)