Posts Tagged ‘Kurt Cobain’

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The remarkable journey of George Takei to pop-cultural icon is the subject of Jennifer M. Kroot’s documentary film, To Be Takei, which just debuted at the Sundance film festival.

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“You mean like a funeral?” the producer of Nirvana’s MTV Unplugged session asked, in regard to the black candles and stargazer lillies Kurt Cobain had requested to decorate the set. “Exactly. Like a funeral,” said Kurt.
It’s difficult to tell whether Nirvana’s unplugged show would have acquired the legendary, mythic status it has, whether it would’ve resonated so poignantly, were it not for the fact that within five months of the show Kurt was no longer with us.

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While Glastonbury has been getting headlines recently, it’s worth saying that the Reading Festival has over the years had probably just as many classic performances and awesome line-ups (if not more). Just look at some of the Reading line-ups twenty years ago; 1994 and 95 alone were like a wish-list of incredible artists, the likes of which you’d have a hard time compiling in 2014.
And no Reading Festival performance has acquired so much legendary mist around it, become so lionized and referenced, as Nirvana’s 1992 headline set.

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“The song is about a person who’s beyond depressed; they’re in their death bed, pretty much.” This was what Kurt Cobain said in a 1993 interview with Impact, concerning the song Pennyroyal Tea; the Nirvana single that never was.

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“This is not pop music,” REM’s Michael Stipe says, as the beloved frontman inducts his friend Kurt Cobain’s unmatched band Nirvana into the Hall of Fame. “This is something much greater than that.” Leave it to Michael Stipe to sum it up perfectly. Krist Novoselic thanks all the Nirvana fans. Buzz Osbourne and Chad Channing both get a shout-out. Punk rock veterans Joan Jett and Kim Gordon come to the party. And no one cares about Kiss or Peter Gabriel.
So five days after the 20th anniversary of the day Kurt Cobain departed, here we are now; Nirvana have been inducted into the Hall of Fame, in an event everyone was talking about but hardly anyone was able to actually see.

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Tonight, twenty years after Kurt Cobain chose to burn out and not fade away, Nirvana are being inducted into the Hall of Fame. But at this time that’s seeing a major swell of Nirvana-related stories and Cobain-related controversies, I say forget for now the conspiracy theories, forget the upcoming Soaked In Bleach movie, forget that stupid statue in Aberdeen, the frequent celebrity nonsense of Courtney Love, and all the other extraneous distractions that float about Kurt Cobain’s legacy; the greatest part of Kurt’s legacy remains musical and cultural. Kurt’s first, most important legacy, is his music.
The second – and the subject of this post – is his influence on the culture and sub-culture of at least two generations, if not a third.

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Someone, via social media, criticised me for writing such a long piece about Kurt Cobain‘s death and not saying anything about Layne Staley (who by strange twists of fate also died on April 5th, though eight years later). The reason I wrote something about Kurt was because it was specifically the 20th year since his death, whereas Layne died twelve years ago, which doesn’t have the same resonance to it as a passage of time.
Also the reason the piece about Kurt was so long is because there was genuinely so much to say; whereas with Layne, other than “gee, he was so awesome and I really miss him”, I didn’t think there was enough to constitute an article.
For the record, I did refer to Layne in the Kurt post. However, I’ve decided to say a little bit here about Layne’s passing too, as he was someone else I really had a lot of love for (and still do).

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In commemoration of the twentieth anniversary of Kurt Cobain‘s death and Nirvana’s impending induction into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame on April 10th, The Burning Blogger continues to celebrate Cobain’s genius and Nirvana’s legacy, leading up to Thursday’s ceremony.

Now obviously there’s pretty much an ocean of Nirvana material and footage out across the worldwide web. For a lot of us, bootlegs used to be the thing; either that or waiting for official releases. I used to devour my Live! Tonight! Sold Out! VHS tape in the old days, pouring over every detail, memorizing every clip like a fucking trainspotter. Not that that wasn’t fun. (more…)

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On 5th April it will be precisely 20 years since Kurt Cobain died. Aside from making me feel like I’m awake a few years passed my bedtime, it also prompts me to look back at that sensitive point in time, remembering what it was like, while also looking at Cobain’s legacy across the two decades that have unbelievably now elapsed.
This is a fan-centric post by someone who’s never quite gotten over that body being found in that bleak garage in Seattle…

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