Remembering Kurt Cobain…

Kurt Cobain

Considering today would have been Kurt Cobain’s 47th birthday, I thought I would write a little something about him.

I remember when I was maybe 13 or 14….in the early stages of my teen years……I was sifting through some of my mom’s CDs.  I can’t remember exactly what I was looking for,  but if I had to guess, there was a song about the three little pigs.  It was pretty heavy and extremely entertaining.  For the life of me I can’t seem to remember who sang the song, but let’s stay on the point here — Kurt Cobain. I guess as I was looking for the mystery three little pigs song, I saw the Nirvana’s Unplugged CD.  I roughly knew who they were, but Kurt had been dead for 6 or more years at that point, so I guess you could say I jumped on board late.  I remember listening to the CD and really liking it.  It sparked a curiosity in finding more music like what I had heard on that album.

I can distinctly remember hearing a couple songs and listening to them over and over and over to the point that I’m surprised the disc didn’t get scratched to hell.  The two songs became my favorite Nirvana songs: Lake of Fire and The Man Who Sold the World.  For at least a month I went around telling people my favorite song was Lake of Fire by Nirvana.

A pride swept over me to reveal my favorite song was something that couldn’t be heard on any radio station at the time.  As a 13 or 14 year old the radio airplay was dedicated to N sync and Backstreet Boys and Eminem and Britney Spears.  I will admit, though I don’t know why I’m admitting or why I owned N sync’s No Strings Attached album.  I can’t tell you a single time I listened to it.  I’m pretty sure it was just a young boy buying something to impress a girl then deciding he didn’t actually like the girl like that.  Whatever the case may be, I’m getting off topic again.  I apologize.

So….where was I?  Right! Lake of Fire by N sync……..Nirvana.  Ok, so again the memory is a little fuzzy, but someone informed me that Nirvana did not write Lake of Fire or Man Who Sold the World.

My whole world was shattered.  I felt shamed.  Was it really true?  Did musicians actually re-use songs from other musicians?  The thought of it destroyed me a little bit.  How could I have been so dumb.  I mean for a month or more I had been telling people false information.  The song I loved so much, just turned out to be a song Nirvana really loved, but not a song they wrote.  The Nerve.

So, I said goodbye to Nirvana, and sought out the original songs.  Which in retrospect turned out to be pretty awesome.  With saying goodbye to Nirvana I said hello to David Bowie and The Meat Puppets, well let’s face it, I only said hello to the Meat Puppet’s greatest hits CD which contained Lake of Fire and Plateau, another song on the Nirvana Unplugged album. As for the rest of the Meat Puppets so called “greatest hits”  they sounded like some deranged hillbilly music.

I did rekindle my relationship with Nirvana, but again it was short lived.  Shortly after Nirvana came Sublime, then Dave Matthews Band, which fun fact about me; the first CD I ever bought was Dave Matthews Band Live at Red Rocks 1995.  Again I jumped on board a little late, but better late than never.  I cycled through a lot of the old 90’s stuff, and my fascination came and went.  As I started branching out more and more in my music taste I found plenty of gems in the 2000’s, and I was pretty savvy with my knowledge of lyrics from the classic rock station.  “The Wall” was by far my favorite. What 13 or 14 year old kid can’t love a song that glorifies talking back to your teacher?

I have to say, all in all, Nirvana is a band that had their moment in my hypothetical “I like that band” sun, but those days have turned to night.  But maybe in honor of Kurt’s birthday I’ll dust off my old copy of Nirvana’s MTV Unplugged album.

Happy Birthday Kurt Cobain, say hello to Jim, Jimi, Janis, Amy, Brad, Brian and Robert for me, and if you wouldn’t mind….play one more epic version of Lake of Fire with them.



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