One billion views later, Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda reflects on “In the End”: “That’s the song”

Linkin Park‘s video for “In the End” has passed over one billion views on YouTube, but as the band’s co-vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Mike Shinoda tells ABC Audio, the song came from humble beginnings.

“In the End,” Shinoda recalls, was the product of an all-night writing session inside LP’s rehearsal studio at the time, which was located in a seedy area of Hollywood “surrounded by drug dealers and prostitutes.”

“They locked me in there so I was safe, basically,” Shinoda says. “I grabbed, like, tacos or something across the street, went in the room and locked the door.”

The next morning, drummer Rob Bourdon was the first to show up, and Shinoda played him “In the End.”

“I don’t remember if [Bourdon] said he had a dream or if he had been thinking about what kind of song he was hoping I would write,” Shinoda explains. “He said, ‘I imagined this is kind of what we would need, but I didn’t know what it would sound like, and you made it. That’s the song."”

Shinoda felt the potential “In the End” had, as well.

“When I woke up and I listened to what I had made, I was, like, ‘I think this is special,’ and [Bourdon] felt it too,” he remembers. “So then it was, like, ‘Oh we’re two-for-two on people feeling like it’s special. I wonder what will happen next."”

What happened next was a whole lot of people felt “In the End” was special, too. “In the End” became perhaps LP’s signature song, and was one of several hit singles off the band’s 2000 diamond-certified debut album, Hybrid Theory.

Hybrid Theory celebrates its 20th anniversary this fall. Shinoda, meanwhile, is releasing an instrumental solo album, Dropped Frames, Vol 1., on Friday.

By Josh Johnson
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