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Tag: Nirvana (21-30 of 46)

'Experiencing Nirvana': Check out never-before-seen photos of Kurt Cobain on Nirvana's first tour of Europe - EXCLUSIVE

Most of the narratives associated with legendary Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain are steeped in tragedy: He was painfully self-conscious about selling out, suffered from a debilitating undiagnosed stomach ailment, struggled with drugs, and ultimately took his own life, leaving an infant daughter behind.

But all those tales came after Nirvana became the biggest band in the world following the overwhelming success of 1991′s Nevermind. There are plenty of stories to be told about the band prior to its ascendence, when they were just another loud bunch of punk kids from Seattle making noise because it was fun.

One of those narratives arises in Experiencing Nirvana, a new ebook (available Tuesday, November 13) featuring photos and recollections by Bruce Pavitt, who co-founded Sub Pop Records, Nirvana’s original label. The book centers around a series of pictures taken by Pavitt over the course of an eight-day run across Europe in the fall of 1989.

Nirvana was on the road with fellow Sub Poppers Tad, both of whom were on a collision course with Mudhoney as part of the label-curated Lamefest UK at London’s Astoria Theatre. The show ended up being a definitive moment for Nirvana; they managed to capture the attention of the taste-making British music press, an accomplishment that built buzz exponentially and started a domino effect that eventually led to the hugeness of Nevermind.

Pavitt’s photos, taken on the fly with a pocket-sized Olympus, reveal a would-be superstar still in development. READ FULL STORY

Taylor Swift in tears, Axl gone AWOL, Britney breaking out in a rash: MTV's top exec tells EW the stories behind the wildest moments in VMA history

Last week’s MTV Video Music Awards may have suffered from disappointing ratings (this year’s viewership was only half of last year’s all-time high 12.45 million) and a dearth of big wow moments, but there’s no shortage of bonkers events to look back on in the show’s past.

In fact, we recently caught up with MTV Music Group President Van Toffler to discuss some of the wildest, wooliest, and most unforgettable water-cooler moments from the VMAs’ nearly three-decade run — and got some previously unpublished revelations on everyone from Britney Spears (did you know that she wasn’t actually Madonna’s first-kiss choice back in 2003? Or that her 2001 snake-charming had a seriously unfortunate side effect?) to Kanye’s infamous speechus interruptus. Read on (with video links in the headers, when available).

Kanye Storms the Stage and Interrupts Taylor Swift (2009)
Toffler: “There’s no way any of us could have predicted that — we didn’t orchestrate it. He came with a bottle of alcohol, so he was in a festive mood to begin with. But we all were in shock in the [production] truck when he walked up on stage and took the mic from Taylor. I remember turning to one of the producers and going, ‘Do we not have security?’ [But] we don’t put those big bulky guys on camera in front of the talent. Maybe this guy thought Kanye belonged on the stage.

I said to our line producer, ‘You need to go talk to Kanye and probably have him exit the building, and I will go deal with Taylor.’ And she was about to perform right after that break! She was a champ. I would be lying if I said she and her mom weren’t crying when I saw them, but she pulled it together. This was one of the most absurd VMA moments for me, having to talk to her and her mom, and they’re crying and upset, and this was her first time on the VMAs, and she had been used to working on country shows with polite artists. This was a little bit more chaotic than she was used to. And then I walked back behind the stage to find Beyoncé crying about the incident. Ultimately I talked to her and her dad and then went back to Taylor after her performance, and an hour later Beyoncé brought Taylor back out so she could have her moment.

It all played out okay in the end, but there was a lot of drama in between. Beyoncé had the wisdom to bring Taylor out on stage, and Taylor stayed to have her moment instead of leaving.”

READ FULL STORY

Russian busker sounds exactly like Kurt Cobain: Watch him here

Kurt Cobain’s vocal doppelgänger exists, and he’s Siberian.

Meet Nikolay Petrovsky, a young subway busker whose voice almost exactly replicates that of the late Nirvana frontman, down to the subtle breaks and distinct throaty grain.

Spin.com (via Russia’s Life News) reports that Petrovsky, who doesn’t drink or smoke or speak English, was trained as a sailor and has been playing in Russian subways since 2004.

In the videos below, watch him perform “Pennyroyal Tea” off of In Utero, followed by Cobain’s solo acoustic version from 1993′s MTV Unplugged.  The resemblance is uncanny: READ FULL STORY

Kurt Cobain's image rights now owned by daughter Frances Bean, not Courtney Love

Can you imagine an alternate reality wherein Kurt doesn’t commit suicide and the Cobain clan lives on happily ever after?

The ongoing saga of the family Cobain just got another wrinkle when The Fix revealed that 19-year old Frances Bean Cobain—the only child of Kurt and Courtney—has actually been in control of her father’s name, likeness, and appearance rights since 2010.

Documents show that in 2009, following her losing custody battle for Frances in 2009, Courtney agreed to step down as the administrator of End of Music LLC in exchange for $2.75 million, paid out to through Frances’ trust fund. The payout is a loan and until Courtney pays it back, she has no say in the business use of her late husband’s name or likeness.

As a part of the custody battle from a few years ago, Frances Bean also owns a generous portion of her father’s artifacts, including paintings, musical equipment, and personal items.

Though an executive named Larry Mestel has administrative rights to the catalog, and can approve usages like the inclusion of “Smells Like Teen Spirit” in the recent Muppets movie, this ultimately means that Frances is in control of her father’s posthumous legacy. So if Nirvana songs show up in advertisements or if her dad’s hologram goes on tour, it’ll be on her.

Read more on EW.com:
Vintage footage of unreleased Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love duet surfaces: Watch it here
Courtney Love apologizes to Frances Bean Cobain on Twitter
In honor of Kurt Cobain’s 45th birthday, let’s listen to his other band

Dave Grohl to memorialize 'dumpy' studio Sound City in new documentary

As reported in Entertainment Weekly’s special music issue last month, Foo Fighters frontman and erstwhile Nirvana drummer Dave Grohl is working on a documentary about the legendary L.A. recording studio Sound City. The film, titled Sound City, does not have an official release date yet.

The recently shuttered facility was ground zero for iconic rock albums from Fleetwood Mac’s self-titled 1975 classic to Nirvana’s Nevermind. But as Grohl told EW last fall, Sound City was hardly a palace worthy of rock stars.

“I thought we were coming down to some fancy-ass Hollywood studio,” Grohl said during a conversation about the 20th anniversary of the release of Nevermind last September. “But Sound City was not a fancy studio at all. It was this dumpy place in Van Nuys. It was just a f—ing incredible board with an incredible drum room.”

The board in question was built by Neve specifically for Sound City, and just before the studio closed last year, Grohl bought the board and had it moved to his own facility in Northridge. It was sitting in the middle of the floor of the room we were in during the interview, an ancient hulking piece of analogue metal with cords sticking out of it.

Grohl said he planned to install it in his studio, hoping to harness the same magic that went into Nevermind as well as classics like Tom Petty’s Damn the Torpedoes and Cheap Trick’s Heaven Tonight (both of which he mentioned during the interview).

What do you think of the idea of Dave Grohl: Filmmaker? And what’s your favorite Sound City album?

Read more on EW.com:
30 Greatest Music Artists Right Now: Foo Fighters
Dave Grohl clarifies Grammy acceptance speech, is totally cool with Skrillex
Nirvana celebrate 20 years of ‘Nevermind’: Read the extended roundtable interview and backstory — booze! corn dogs! transvestite karaoke! — here!

Vintage footage of unreleased Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love duet surfaces: Watch it here

In the spirit of Tupac’s resurrection, another ’90s legend has appeared from beyond the grave.

Hit So Hard is a new documentary centering on Hole drummer Patty Schemel, but the movie’s been getting extra attention thanks to scenes containing rare vintage footage of Kurt Cobain, Courtney Love, and their daughter Frances Bean.

The movie has already played at a few festivals and will be showing in select cities soon, but if you’re impatient, a bootleg video has found its way to YouTube.

The clip features Cobain and Love performing an unreleased, apparently unfinished duet charmingly called “Stinking of You,” as well as footage of the new parents horsing around with Frances Bean, who was then just a tiny lil baby. They grow up so fast!

Check it all out in the video below:

READ FULL STORY

In honor of Kurt Cobain's 45th birthday, let's listen to his other band

If Kurt Cobain were still with us, he would be celebrating his 45th birthday today. (It’s also possible, though perhaps unlikely, that he and Courtney Love would have been ringing in their 20th year of marriage this Friday). And, of course, last year he’d have seen the 20th anniversary of Nevermind, the watershed album that cemented Nirvana’s legacy whether he liked it or not.

But before Nirvana came Cobain’s lesser-known musical incarnation: Fecal Matter. Formed by Kurt in his hometown of Aberdeen, Wash., the group (which included key members of underground heroes the Melvins) only ever recorded one obscure, unreleased demo tape, Illiteracy Will Prevail, on a 4-track, but the songs still live on thanks to bootlegs and the Internet.

It doesn’t take too many Fecal Matter tracks to hear how much of the band’s sludgy sound colored Nirvana’s early material. So, herewith are some choice cuts from the band before the band:

READ FULL STORY

Who is the greatest guitarist of all time? Prepare to be unsurprised!

For decades, the question of who exactly is the greatest guitarist of all-time has occupied countless music fans — if not drummers, like myself, who are usually too exhausted from doing all the real work to debate such an inconsequential matter.

Regardless, Rolling Stone has just released a new list which ranks history’s top 100 fretmeisters and which was voted on by a veritable army of guitarists including Billy Corgan, Eddie Van Halen, Alex Lifeson, Ritchie Blackmore, Mick Mars, Robbie Robertson, Melissa Etheridge, and Kirk Hammett.

The list is packed with what can only be described as the usual, legendary, suspects. Jimi Hendrix tops the 100 and he is very much not the only featured musician currently jamming at the great gig in the sky.

Indeed, while such young-ish turks as Slash, Jack White, Derek Trucks, and Radiohead‘s Jonny Greeenwood are included, the entire top ten is made up of either the deceased or guitarists who, with the arguable exception of Jeff Beck, haven’t recorded anything of real note in a long time.

Take a look at the list yourself by clicking here and tell us what you think. Does the 100 merely reflect the electorate’s own often very “venerable” nature or is the golden age of the great, innovative, guitar hero now just a distant memory? And who is your pick for the best guitarist of all-time?

Read more:
The best bassline of all time? One (silly) poll gives Muse’s ‘Hysteria’ the top spot
Our take on this year’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominees: Should the Beastie Boys, Guns ‘N Roses, Red Hot Chili Peppers, and others get in?
Slash talks about his tour with Ozzy, the search for Velvet Revolver’s singer, and Axl’s latest accolade
Keith Richards: Music’s most influential character?

Nirvana celebrate 20 years of 'Nevermind': Read the extended roundtable interview and backstory -- booze! corn dogs! transvestite karaoke! -- here!

In the early ’90s, Aqua Net-fueled hair metal and disposable pop songs gripped the marketplace. Then came three shaggy dudes whose blistering mix of radio-ready hits and caustic deep cuts blew the dawning decade wide open.

Now, with the arrival of a deluxe box set celebrating 20 years of Nevermind, the full story of Nirvana’s seminal album can finally be told: During a round­table with EW in Los Angeles, Dave Grohl, 42, Krist Novoselic, 46, and producer Butch Vig, 56, recall creating a soon-to-be classic with their late friend and collaborator Kurt Cobain—and all the booze, corn dogs, turtles, and transvestite karaoke singers that came along for the ride.

April 1990: Cobain, Novoselic, and then-drummer Chad Channing visit Smart Studios in Madison, Wisconsin, to record with producer Butch Vig.

Krist Novoselic
We were going to tour with Tad, and we said, “Why don’t we go to Madison, Wisconsin,” because we were kicking around these songs. So we drove out there straight from Washington State to Wisconsin in two days.

Butch Vig
They were with Sub Pop then, and they came out ostensibly to do a new album for Sub Pop. We tracked maybe seven songs in five days.

Novoselic
We had heard of Butch. He was doing a lot of Touch & Go bands. And Tad recorded there too, so they sent us good references.

Vig
it was a little tough because Kurt kept blowing his voice out. And during the middle of the recording, they did a show at a local club in Madison and he blew his voice out even worse. I think the last two days he couldn’t sing at all. I expected they were going to come back. I didn’t hear anything, and all of a sudden I started getting these calls from people saying, “Hey man, I love these Nirvana tracks.” They had gone home and dubbed a cassette I gave them, and they made a hundred copies and gave them out to their friends. They bootlegged themselves, essentially.

Novoselic
That was how Geffen got a copy. I think [Sonic Youth members and Geffen signees] Kim [Gordon] and Thurston [Moore] had a copy, and they gave it to [Geffen A&R executive] Gary Gersh

September 1990: Cobain and Novoselic fire Channing and replace him with former Scream drummer Dave Grohl. While working out the growing batch of new songs, the band signs with Geffen Records. READ FULL STORY

Joseph Gordon-Levitt gets his grunge on: Watch his live cover of 'Lithium' here

At this point, “Joseph Gordon-Levitt” is basically synonymous with “sexy version of an unsexy dude”—he’s given us sexy brainiac, sexy heartbroken dumped guy, sexy cancer patient, and even sexy awkward preteen alien (OK, I apologize for that last one).

On Tuesday night at Seattle’s Neptune Theater, Gordon-Levitt proved he can just as convincingly pull off “sexy unwashed grunge god,” too.

Gordon-Levitt showed off his formidable musical talents with a live cover of Nirvana’s “Lithium”—a crowd favorite, of course, in late frontman Kurt Cobain’s home state—at a concert promoting his collaborative production company, hitRECord.

“Now and then it’s nice to just do something that’s not for the record, that’s just for tonight,” the actor said, just before unleashing his rendition. “I just wanna play this song, in this town.”

Watch Gordon-Levitt’s impressively true-to-form cover of “Lithium” below: READ FULL STORY

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