Friday, December 31, 2010

The Plunge Into Grunge

So..the new year dawns!! That means I need to moving I guess and I'm excited to do so! Many thanks to every single one of you who has read, commented or supported me in this project..I hope to make it a fun, rewarding ride for you and me both.
  Now, lets get down to business...for the month of January my musical focus is going to be the band Nirvana. The choice to tackle them first, and in some ways the idea for this whole project, started with a conversation I had with my wife a few motnhs back. Kurt Cobain and his death came up in conversation some how and I was astounded when she told me that it had a profound effect on her college campus. People stayed home from class, bars were full and people were really, truly mourning the loss. I remember hearing about it but my thoughts ran more along the line of "Aww, another poor little rock star junkie couldn't handle the pressure of being rich and famous..maybe the douche bag needed a hug". Yeah I was an asshole, get over it. I had no idea that other members of peer group were actually mourning. So after that conversation with Mandy I asked around and yeah..alot of people were genuinely upset and a few I talked with even went so far as to compare the impact of his death to that of Elvis Presley. Granted, taking a shotgun to yourself out of melancholy defiance is a tad  bit cooler then croaking on the can with a belly full of qualudes and a half of a peanut butter and bacon sandwich clutched in your cold , dead fingers but still...this is the King of Rock and Roll he's being compared to here! So I asked around even more and people whose opinion's on music I respect very much had nothing but glowing reverence for the man and his music. Again and again I kept hearing how Cobain was the voice of his generation, that he represented the disenfranchised youth and was the spokes person for Generation X. It wasn't bad enough that his death was compared to Elvis in terms of tragicness but all of a sudden I start to get that the last time an artist stood up to represent the ideals of the worlds youth it was John Lennon. Really? Elvis AND John freaking Lennon? How did I miss this musical renaissance? And what exactly did it entail? That my friends is my mission for the next month..I'm gonna sink into Nirvana and see where it leads me.
I probably won't do this with all my monthly choices but in this case there is clearly ma beginning, middle and end to Cobain's career so I'm going to listen to and report on each of their three primary albums one at a time in order of release in the next week or so and then add in all the xtras, B sides, unplugged etc to help round out the bigger picture.
So next time; Bleach!


  1. My questions to all of you; Where were you when Kurt Cobain killed him self and did you really care? If so then whay? What is it about this guy that gets him in the same league as some of music's greats?

  2. I had no idea who he was until after his death. Nor did I know of Nirvana or Pearl Jam, etc, except what got played on top 100 radio. I was still stuck on Bon Jovi and 80's hair bands at the time. I missed the whole "grunge" thing, so I'm a bit curious about this too.

  3. As you said, I was on campus, dating (yes, I had a few dates before you, husband) a man who was completely obsessed with Nirvana. When he heard about Kurt's death, he went into a deep depression. There were candlelight vigils on campus, groups of people gathering to mourn and it felt like a dark cloud was over my whole community. I didn't know anything by Nirvana except the big, popular songs and a couple of videos, notably one unplugged version. By the way, Wikipedia says that Kurt's apparent suicide is questionable - it could have been murder.

  4. I don't see how he can be comparedv to Elvis or Lennon. I am not fans of "The King" or the Beatles, but they were around, and making music/entertaining for a Looooong time to gain their status. Kurt was around for what, a couple of years, Nirvana put out a few albums? EVERYBODY knew Elvis & the Beatles, how did SO many never hear of this guy 'til he was dead? You, included. I'm not trying to stir things up, I just don't get it.

  5. The previous 2 anons are me.