The 20 most powerful Chester Bennington lyrics, as chosen by you

We asked you all to tell us the Linkin Park vocalist Chester Bennington's most powerful lyrics and what they meant to you.

The 20 most powerful Chester Bennington lyrics, as chosen by you

The death of Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington in 2017 left the rock world without one of its brightest contemporary voices. But though Chester is gone, his music and lyrics remain, and continue to provide solace, support, and hope to millions of fans the world over.

To honour the great man, we wanted to showcase how powerful his words were. But the stories behind those lyrics, and the people to whom they meant so much, are more important than any analysis that one of our writers could whip up. So we decided to continue our tradition of tweeting out to you, the fans, and asking you to tell us about which Chester Bennington lyrics you found most powerful, and why.

The overwhelming response we received was a testament to just how much Chester Bennington's words meant to so many, and we appreciated every person who was brave enough to tell us their personal story. But among them, we found certain lyrics mentioned several times, and certain stories behind specific lyrics that shook us to our core. Those are the ones we’re featuring here today.

Thank you to everyone who wrote in with your thoughts, stories, and lyrics. We like to think that Chester would’ve considered them a wonderful birthday present.

Here are the 20 most powerful Chester Bennington lyrics, and why you, the fans, chose them…

With You (Hybrid Theory, 2000)

It's true, the way I feel was promised by your face
The sound of your voice painted on my memories
Even if you're not with me, I'm with you

“If music is a religion, then Chester Bennington is my prophet. He is forever the light of my life through the good and the bad things. And when I die one day, my love for him will always be. Rest in peace, Chester. I’ll see you on the other side.” – Eliana

Easier To Run (Meteora, 2003)

Something has been taken
From deep inside of me
A secret I've kept locked away
No one can ever see
Wounds so deep they never show
They never go away
Like moving pictures in my head
For years and years they've played

“I remember when I first listened to these words, I cried. All I was thinking about is how someone who I never met could describe so clearly and in such detail what I went through. The feeling that someone out there understands and is shouting these lyrics to the world to open people’s eyes to dark issues like abuse and mental health struggles is indescribable. A mix of relief and sorrow at the same time. because I knew that that was coming from the same honest place, a result of trauma and pain.” – Noor

Shadow Of The Day (Minutes To Midnight, 2007)

And the sun will set for you…

“[This line] means so much because I suffer from bi-polar and schizophrenia, but I made a promise to myself: no matter how bad my days get and how hard my demons reach for me, I will not let them or myself invade my mother’s happiness. She will always see a beautiful sunset even when I see the storms ahead.” – Robert

Somewhere I Belong (Meteora, 2003)

I will never know myself until I do this on my own
And I will never feel
Anything else until my wounds are healed
I will never be
Anything ’til I break away from
And I will break away, and find myself today

“Over the years, this verse makes me look back at the life I have lived so far. It made me realize that it takes time to find yourself. The most difficult challenges come with the greatest rewards and an immense amount of valuable lessons. It is never given to you, it is always earned. That struck me to the core, it really spoke to my soul in a way, that I want to make Chester Bennington proud by pursuing goals that will make a difference in this world and make others proud. The love, full of life energy and raw passion, that Chester portrayed made me feel like he was my big brother and knew me. This song has taught me that hardships are inevitable in life. It’s nature and a journey of acceptance while moving forward.” – Rob Jr

Breaking The Habit (Meteora, 2003)

I don't know what's worth fighting for
Or why I have to scream
I don't know why I instigate
And say what I don't mean
I don't know how I got this way
I'll never be all right
So I'm breaking the habit
I'm breaking the habit tonight

“These words made me feel like I was not alone in the world, and that there was someone out there that had the same thoughts going through their mind as I did. I made a vow that my story wouldn’t end there. I wanted to see more of what this beautiful soul would share with the world. That was 16 years ago, and because of those lyrics, my story is still being told today.” - Katrina

Battle Symphony (One More Light, 2017)

I hear my battle symphony
All the world in front of me
If my armor breaks
I’ll fuse it back together

“One More Light came out during a point in my life where I didn’t have much direction, it felt like everything and everyone was going against me, yet every time I play that song my mood is lifted instantly.

Linkin Park help me on a daily basis to keep going. It’s because of songs like Battle Symphony that I went to counseling when I was 18 and now, at 20, I have an interview with a music college next month. I owe every little success to them.” – Callum

Cross Off (Mark Morton – Anesthetic, 2019)

Making my way back from the madness
Shifting my thoughts from the blackness
And the sadness, but the fact is
I'm swinging through life like a clenched fist
Fuck sanity, I wanna bleed
Can't kill the pain, it's everything
It's all I feel
It's what I breathe
Turn the hate I breed into what I need

“Cross Off was a punch in my heart and head when I listened to it for the first time. Not only because of Chester’s voice after he passed away, but mostly because it means so much for me. Those lyrics mean a lot. (Like all the other songs…but some come in special moments of your life.)” – Anna

Nobody Can Save Me (One More Light, 2017)

I’m holding up a light
Chasing up the darkness inside
And I don’t wanna let you down
But only I can save me

“I was diagnosed with depression, anxiety, and agoraphobia in 2004, when I was 12, so as I grew throughout my teens I gravitated to this music that became an outlet for all the things I was feeling. It’s been a fight I’ve been battling over half my life now. I know most of the ins and outs of it and I’ve become so familiar with my demons, the song Nobody Can Save Me stuck with me from the opening line: ‘I’m dancing with my demons.’ It was a hopeful and optimistic portrayal of this battle.

“At first listen, I interpreted the lyrics to mean I can’t rely on other people to fight this battle for me, I have to do things on my own and that’s okay because I’m strong enough, but later in 2017 I came to realize that’s not what it means at all. Now I believe ‘Only I can save me’ means that I need to be aware of the times I’m standing in my own way. I need to swallow my pride and ask for help when I can’t do things on my own. I need to stick to habits that will benefit my mental and physical health because no one else can or will do those things for me.” – Aly

Waiting For The End (A Thousand Suns, 2010)

So, picking up the pieces, now where to begin?
The hardest part of ending is starting again

“[This lyric] helped me a lot through a hard time, when I had to deal with cancer! It gave me the strength to fight and never give up! I’m so grateful to Chester and Linkin Park, because they helped to save my life.” – Kakarotha

Sharp Edges (One More Light, 2017)

Mama always told me don’t you run
Don’t you run with scissors, son
You’re gonna hurt someone
Mama told me look before you leap
Always think before you speak, and watch the friends you keep

“I grew up listening to Linkin Park when I was in 4th grade. I recall asking my parents for a Linkin Park shirt for my birthday, and they took me to Hot Topic. It’s funny because, having Hispanic parents and having them walk into a Hot Topic, it’s a story of its own. My mother was diagnosed with brain cancer when I was 10 to 12 years old. Music was my escape for everything going on. My mother had Stage 3 cancer for a very long time. My mother’s cancer progressed to Stage 4. I felt like my world was crashing.

“After Chester passed June 2017, I was devastated. I came home to my mom and cried my eyes out. She listened and comforted me. My mother passed away October 2017. It was a very hard year for me. I could not hear music much less Chester’s. There are many songs I love but Sharp Edges from One More Light became even more meaningful than any other song.

“As I reflect on everything, this song hurts, but reminds me of my mother. What a strong warrior she was.” – Nancy

Roads Untraveled (Living Things, 2012)

May your love never end
And if you need a friend
There's a seat here alongside me

“[This lyric is] exactly what I need to hear when I have bad days. More importantly, it’s a line that’s helped me to understand empathy and kindness and to exercise them towards others whenever I can.” – Fox

Fire (Dead By Sunrise – Out Of The Ashes, 2009)

No need to hear your voice or see your face
To know that you are with me

“As Chester Bennington is not only Linkin Park, I will say then that the lyrics of Fire are… so hard and so beautiful to speak to me about how life is hard to live with an empty place next to us… The fact that Fire is about a kind of angel looking secretly on your life gives me that feeling of never being really alone, somehow.” – Anna

One Step Closer (Hybrid Theory, 2000)

I need a little room to breathe
’Cause I’m one step closer to the edge
And I’m about to break

“Chester Bennington and Linkin Park helped me out in many ways as a pre-teen and angry teenager. I had a mum who was in and out of hospital having spinal operations and a stepfather who for obvious reason helped and concentrated on her getting better. So I was very much left to fend for myself going through final years of middle school (aged 10 to 12) and then into the wonder that is high school (aged 13 through to 16). So music became my escape and Linkin Park were my go-to band.

“Chester’s voice, the lyrics, they all had some meaning to the way I felt… Even now, I’ll still fall back to Linkin Park in tough times, but I still love listening to them when I’m not sad, or stressed, as they’re just great, I’ve grown up listening to them evolve and change and loved every bit of it. As a teen, I used to self-harm as a form of escape, not because I wanted to kill myself, but because it made me feel alive, the pain releases endorphins which is what I was wanting, it would also help give something else to concentrate on.

“The teenager me resonated with One Step Closer - as I often needed just a bit of room to breathe and think, and nothing made sense to me back then.” – Jade

Given Up (Minutes To Midnight, 2007)

I hyperventilate
Looking for help somehow, somewhere
And no one cares
I'm my own worst enemy

“I’ve been dealing with numerous health problems my whole life, and I’ve spent lots of time in hospitals. I always felt isolated and lonely, like people don’t understand me and don’t care about me. I started having frequent panic attacks. This song made me feel like someone understands, like I’m not completely alone. It got me through some of the most difficult times. Thank you, Linkin Park.” – Petra

Leave Out All The Rest (Minutes To Midnight, 2007)

When my time comes
Forget the wrong that I've done
Help me leave behind some reasons to be missed
And don't resent me
And when you're feeling empty
Keep me in your memory
Leave out all the rest

“Of all the lyrics Chester sang, the song Leave Out All The Rest is what changed my life. If it weren’t for that song I would not be here. It talked me down from the ledge when I was in a dark time in my life. It was also the song I went to when I found out about his passing. Nearly all of the songs speak my life, but this one saved it.” – Kristi

Crawling (Hybrid Theory, 2000)

Crawling in my skin
These wounds, they will not heal
Fear is how I fall
Confusing what is real

“When I was 12, I was alone at home with my grandma, watching MTV, when my grandma fell to the floor. I was running to her and in this moment they played Crawling on TV. While I was waiting for the ambulance with my dying grandma in my arms, I was hearing this song, and it was like they were with me. So every word from this song means the world for me.” – Dominique

The Messenger (A Thousand Suns, 2010)

When life leaves us blind
Love keeps us kind

“This lyric means the world to me because of the friend I lost a year ago. he was the kindest person I’ve ever seen and he saw good in every single person and the other reason is because of what Chester said in his [2017 Birmingham] speech: ‘The one thing that can’t be defeated is love, right? You can conquer hate by ignoring it, you can destroy it by loving the person next to you.’ We really don’t know what we’ve got until it’s gone.” – Dražen

One More Light (One More Light, 207)

Who cares if one more light goes out?
In a sky of a million stars
It flickers, flickers
Who cares when someone's time runs out?
If a moment is all we are
We're quicker, quicker
Who cares if one more light goes out?
Well, I do

“My grandma passed away in January of 2016, and we were very close, so I struggled tremendously with it. Linkin Park was always my go-to in time of need, and this was no different. When One More Light came out in 2017, it touched me in a way that I can’t describe.

“Those words struck me because even a year later I was struggling with her death, and whenever I told people about it they would always respond with: ‘Still?’ Then Chester passed on July 20, and it was very difficult not only because of his passing but because July 20 is also my grandma’s birthday. So now the song has a very strong meaning to me. I plan to get 7/20 tattooed on my wrist in remembrance of them both.” – Nicki

Robot Boy (A Thousand Suns, 2010)

And you think compassion's a flaw
And you'll never let it show
And you're sure you've hurt in a way
That no one will ever know

“But it’s not just the lyrics, and how they help me to keep powering through, knowing that the bad things in my life will make me a better human when I come out the other side. It’s also how the song, Chester’s and Mike’s vocals and the instrumentals, weave in and out of each other to go from a simple piano melody to produce the most beautiful wall of sound.” – Vikki

Somewhere I Belong (Meteora, 2003)

I want to heal, I want to feel,
What I thought was never real
I want to let go of the pain I felt so long
I want to heal, I want to feel
Like I'm close to something real
I want to find something I've wanted all along
Somewhere I belong

“I have struggled with mental health since I was a small child. I am on the autistic spectrum and I am now 16 years old. I also deal with anxiety and depression on a daily basis as a result of my autism. I have felt so much pain throughout my life which I don’t know how to let go of and how to handle. That’s why this lyric means so much to me: because Chester was feeling the same way I was, and I wasn’t alone anymore.” – Anonymous

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