Like a Stone

"Like a Stone" is a song by the American rock supergroup Audioslave, released as the second single from their eponymous debut studio album Audioslave in January 2003. The song topped both the Billboard Hot Mainstream Rock Tracks and Hot Modern Rock Tracks charts, and reached number 31 on the Hot 100 chart, making it their biggest US hit. "Like a Stone" has been certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). It became the fifth best performing alternative song on the Alternative Songs chart of the decade and the eighth best performing rock song on the Mainstream Rock chart of the decade.

"Like a Stone"
Audioslave like a stone
Single by Audioslave
from the album Audioslave
Released January 2003
Format CD single
Recorded 2002
Length 4:54 (album version)
Audioslave singles chronology
"Like a Stone"
"Show Me How to Live"
"Like a Stone"
"Show Me How to Live"
Audio sample
  • file
  • help

Background and composition

Bassist Tim Commerford claims that the song is about an old man waiting for death, who sits in a house alone after all his friends and family have passed on, waiting to be reunited with them.[1][2] However, while Commerford originally thought it was a song about love and romance, band's singer and songwriter Chris Cornell explains that "It's a song about concentrating on the afterlife you would hope for, rather than the normal monotheistic approach: You work really hard all your life to be a good person and a moral persona and fair and generous, and then you go to hell anyway."[3]

The melancholy tone and certain parts of the lyrics of "Like a Stone" have prompted some to wonder if Cornell wrote the song about the late Alice in Chains singer Layne Staley, who died in April 2002. Cornell has denied this, saying "No. I'm not one of those guys where, like, something happens and then I go run around, 'Ooh, 9/11, and now it's 9/12, let me write about that. I wrote the lyrics before he died. [...] You can misinterpret that stuff pretty easy, but I don't tend to sit down and plan on writing about a specific issue. They come up or they don't."[4]

Music video

The music video for "Like a Stone" was written and directed by Grammy winner Meiert Avis, who has also directed videos for State Radio, U2, Bruce Springsteen, Bob Dylan, J-Lo and many others. The video was produced by Oualid Mouaness, edited by Jim Rhoads and set in an old Spanish mansion in Los Angeles where Jimi Hendrix once lived and wrote. Commerford's then 1-year-old son was featured in the video. It shows the band performing inside the mansion where they also set up a recording booth.

Track listing

All lyrics written by Chris Cornell; all music composed by Audioslave, except "Super Stupid" written by George Clinton, Eddie Hazel, Billy Bass Nelson and Tawl Ross.

  1. "Like a Stone" – 4:54
  2. "Like a Stone" (live on BBC Radio 1) – 4:58
  3. "Gasoline" (live on BBC Radio 1) – 4:45
  4. "Set It Off" (live on Late Show with David Letterman) – 4:01
  5. "Super Stupid" (live on BBC Radio 1)
  6. "Like a Stone" (music video)


Weekly charts

Chart (2003) Peak
Australia (ARIA)[5] 35
New Zealand (Recorded Music NZ)[6] 14
US Billboard Hot 100[7] 31
US Alternative Songs (Billboard)[8] 1
US Mainstream Rock (Billboard)[9] 1
US Billboard Hot Adult Top 40 Tracks[10] 23
US Billboard Top 40 Mainstream[11] 27

Year-end charts

Chart (2003) Position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100[12] 96
Chart (2017) Peak
US Hot Rock Songs (Billboard)[13] 7
US Rock Digital Song Sales (Billboard)[14] 5
US Rock Streaming Songs (Billboard)[15] 14


  1. ^ Audioslave (DVD). Interscope Records/Epic Records. July 29, 2003.
  2. ^ "Songfacts - Like A Stone by Audioslave". Songfacts. Retrieved 2007-05-14.
  3. ^ "The Audioslave Fan Forum - Audioslave FAQ". Archived from the original on 2007-09-27. Retrieved 2007-05-14.
  4. ^ "AUDIOSLAVE Select 'Like A Stone' As Second Single". Blabbermouth. December 11, 2002. Archived from the original on December 22, 2015. Retrieved April 23, 2018.
  5. ^ " – Audislave – Like a Stone". ARIA Top 50 Singles.
  6. ^ " – Audioslave – Like a Stone". Top 40 Singles.
  7. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Hot 100)". Billboard. Retrieved November 8, 2017.
  8. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Alternative Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved April 9, 2015.
  9. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Mainstream Rock)". Billboard. Retrieved April 3, 2015.
  10. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Adult Top 40)". Billboard. Retrieved November 8, 2017.
  11. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Mainstream Top 40)". Billboard. Retrieved November 8, 2017.
  12. ^ Pedro. "Longbored Surfer - 2003". Retrieved October 22, 2014.
  13. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Hot Rock Songs)". Billboard.
  14. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Rock Digital Song Sales)". Billboard. Retrieved November 4, 2017.
  15. ^ "Audioslave Chart History (Rock Streaming Songs)". Billboard. Retrieved November 4, 2017.

External links

This page is based on a Wikipedia article written by authors (here).
Text is available under the CC BY-SA 3.0 license; additional terms may apply.
Images, videos and audio are available under their respective licenses.