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Oliver Sykes Reflects On Emotional Tribute Performance For Chester Bennington

On October 27, 2017, the world came together to witness a heartrending tribute concert that paid homage to the late Linkin Park frontman, Chester Bennington. The event, titled Linkin Park And Friends Celebrate Life In Honor Of Chester Bennington, unfolded at the legendary Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles. A constellation of artists graced the stage that night, with one of the most unforgettable performances being delivered by Oliver Sykes from Bring Me the Horizon.

Sykes was entrusted with the monumental task of performing Linkin Park‘s iconic track Crawling. In a recent interview with Detroit’s WRIF radio station, Sykes candidly described the experience as “bittersweet,” a poignant reflection of the intricate blend of emotions that the occasion demanded. While he felt deeply honored to be a part of this momentous event, the profound sense of loss that underscored the gathering cast a shadow over his emotions. He humbly admitted, “I think it’s hard to process things like that.”

For Oli, Chester Bennington‘s passing struck a deeply personal chord. His music had been a guiding force during his formative years, and Bennington’s death felt like the loss of a piece of his own past. He shared, “I definitely felt like a part of my childhood died when Chester died.” Despite not having a personal connection to Bennington, Sykes grappled with a sense of disbelief and complex emotions. He confessed, “It’s weird. I get it’s kind of like imposter syndrome. I feel like a piece of me has died, but also like I didn’t really know this person. So it’s a really hard thing to process.”

The night was not only about remembering Chester Bennington but also about shedding light on the critical issue of mental health—a cause that Bennington had been vocal about. Proceeds from the event supported Music For Relief’s One More Light Fund, honoring Bennington’s memory and furthering the fight for mental health awareness. As Sykes put it, the evening was about playing a role in Chester’s farewell: “Like I’m here, stood up… It’s basically his funeral; I’m playing his funeral.”

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Eva van den Bosch Head Editor, Photographer
Eva van den Bosch combines concert photography with a prominent editorial role at Strife Mag.