Monday, April 05, 2004


Kurt died for your sins

Please don’t let it happen again.

As I’m sure you’ve heard, this week marks ten years since Kurt Cobain killed himself, and, though I’ll take any excuse to listen to Unplugged In New York, I feel this deep feeling of dread.

I was at work the day they found his body. A couple of hours after the announcement was made, while I was still reeling from the initial shock, my boss, who knew I was a Nirvana fan, felt the need to come ask me how I was doing, and I made the mistake of saying I was (and these were my exact words), “kinda bummed.”

Apparently this somehow designated me as the official scapegoat for Nirvana fandom in his eyes, as he took every opportunity he could that day to regale me with his opinion of Kurt Cobain’s hygiene, his drug habits, his musicianship (said boss being an aspiring commercial-jingle composer), and anything else he could find at which to take a cheap shot.

And, as I’m sure you know, he was far from alone. That very day, Ted Nugent wormed his way onto some radio show, trashing Cobain in an attempt to stave off his own irrelevance. Rush Limbaugh called him a piece of human debris. Andy Rooney, in one of his famous crazy-old-man rants, blithered about kids these days and how this wouldn’t have happened in the good old days of the great depression.

Oh, and Religious Brother, an ambulance driver, took great delight in telling me how many copycat suicides he cleaned up.

The musical revolution that Nirvana had ushered in had suddenly had the rug pulled out from under it. We tried to deny that it was over, but music that was sincerely felt, that came from a personal place inside, quickly became unfashionable, and on the musical charts, groups like Pearl Jam and Alice In Chains gave way to soundalikes like Stone Temple Pilots and Bush, who eventually gave way to boy bands and jailbait pop princesses.

Time heals many wounds, and we’ve once again come to a place where we can simply appreciate the music, free from the ugly details of Kurt Cobain’s death. But with all the talk this week about the anniversary, I’m just afraid that the old bad feelings will be stirred up again, and once again I’ll be constantly shit on for being depressed that one of my favorite musicians is no longer around to make music. But just in case Religious Brother calls me up to gloat, I’m gonna have Nevermind playing at full volume to drown him out.

Copyright 2004 Rich Bowen

Comments: Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?