NFC News 04/2005
April 30, 2005

An interesting auction is underway: "[It is] a guitar designed by Kurt's mother (Wendy) and sister to help raise money for breast cancer. This guitar is decorated with never before seen pictures of Kurt as a child and other pictures of Kurt. The guitar is signed by his mother and includes a special message on the back. The public can begin bidding on the guitar April 24, 2005 at this site. The proceeds will benefit Expedition Inspiration, a nonprofit organization increasing breast cancer awareness and funding research." Thanks to Diedra for the info. You can view pictures here: #1 and #2.


April 24, 2005

As last year, my good friend Eryn once again travelled to Seattle in the early days of April to pay tribute to Kurt Cobain. Eryn and her friend Stephanie visited Viretta Park which is close to the former home of Kurt and Courtney, a place that has become a gathering place for Nirvana fans to mourn and celebrate the life of Kurt Cobain every year on the 5th and 8th of April. Eryn has once again shared her story with us and detailed her trip to the park, around places in Seattle and the other nearby cities where Kurt spent most of his time. You can find the story here.

I also have some pictures from the trip: Space Needle, Stephanie in front of Picora's Pizza, Eryn in front of Taco Time, The bench at Viretta Park (April 5, 2005), Kurt and Courtney's former home (April 5, 2005), The bench at Viretta Park (April 5, 2005), The bridge by the Wishkah river (April 6, 2005), Underneath the bridge (April 6, 2005), Eryn by the new 'Welcome to Aberdeen' sign (April 6, 2005), Eryn and Stephanie by the original Reciprocal Studios.

These pictures are for nirvanaclub.com only. I also have a funny video with a 'performance' of Old Age from Viretta Park, featuring Eryn and Stephanie at Viretta Park. View it here.

The Seattle Sun published a story about an exhibit at the Henry Art Gallery in Seattle that runs through May 8, featuring a famous photograph of Kurt Cobain by Alice Wheeler. Read more here. Read the original story here.

Apparently there is a story on Nirvana's 1992 era in the May issue of Q Magazine (with Green Day on the cover). Also, in the Seattle Weekly, for their music awards, Krist is up for an award for Lifetime Achievement!

Photographer and musician extraordinaire Steve Gullick, who captured Nirvana several times with his camera, is involved with a new project called Keep Mother. More info here.


April 22, 2005

"COURTNEY LOVE has apologised to bassist DUFF McKAGAN on behalf of her late husband KURT COBAIN, who viciously slammed the rocker's former band GUNS N' ROSES. The NIRVANA star publicly blasted the PARADISE CITY rockers when his pioneering grunge outfit launched to international success, and reportedly mocked GN'R band members at a high profile live event in the early 1990s. However, McKagan - credited with being one of the last, if not the last, person to speak to Cobain before he committed suicide in April 1994 - urged Love not to apologise to him for Cobain's harsh comments, because he never took them to heart.

He says, 'I've talked to her a couple times since I've been sober. This time she was sweet, just really nice, and healthy. She started apologising to me for what Kurt (Cobain) said, criticising Guns N' Roses, and I said there is nothing to apologise for. That's rock 'n' roll.'

McKagan and Cobain sat next to each other on a flight from Los Angeles - where the iconic singer had fled a rehabilitation centre - back to their Seattle hometown. Days later, Cobain was discovered dead with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head in his garage."
Story courtesy of contactmusic.com. Thanks to David Scott also.


April 20, 2005

Gus Van Sant's latest movie Last Days is just about to be released. "Michael Pitt stars in a Seattle-set rock & roll drama as a musician whose life and career is reminiscent of Kurt Cobain's." Aside from Pitt, the movie features Italian actress and model Asia Argento and Lukas Haas (of TV's 24 among other things). The movie will be released in France on May 13 and the US on July 22. A trailer was recently released which you can view here. It's also available here.

A more detailed synopsis for the film, courtesy of upcomingmovies.com:
"LAST DAYS is filmmaker Gus Van Sant's meditation on the inner turmoil that engulfs a brilliant, but troubled, musician in the final hours of his life. Michael Pitt stars as Blake, an introspective artist who is buckling under the weight of fame, professional obligations, and a mounting feeling of isolation. LAST DAYS follows Blake through a handful of hours he spends in and near his wooded home, a fugitive from his own life. It is a period of random moments and fractured consciousness, fused by spontaneous bursts of rock & roll. Expanding on the elliptical style forged in his two previous films, GERRY and the Palme d'Or-winning ELEPHANT, Van Sant layers images and sounds to articulate an emotional landscape, creating a dynamic work about a soul in transition.

Dwarfed by towering trees, Blake slowly makes his way through dense woods. He scrambles down an embankment to a fresh spring, and undresses for a short swim. The next morning, he returns to his house, an elegant, if neglected, stone mansion.

Many people are looking for Blake - his friends, his managers and record label, even a private detective - but he does not want to be found. In the haze of his final hours, Blake will spend most of his time by himself. He avoids the people who are living in his house, who approach him only when they want something, be it money or help with a song. He hides from one concerned friend, and turns away another. He visits politely with a stranger from the Yellow Pages sales department, and he ducks into an underground rock club. He wanders through the woods, and he plays a new song, one last rock & roll blow out. Finally, alone in the greenhouse, Blake will look and listen - and seek release."
More info and images here. Also check the official website for the film. It is in French but has quite a stunning design and in the background you can hear a song off the soundtrack which has a very eerie Kurt Cobain feel to it.

Although this film is inspired by the last days of Kurt Cobain, it is a work of fiction and none of the characters or events portrayed in the film are real. Also keep an eye on this site for info. On a sidenote, Kim from Sonic Youth appears in the trailer! Thanks to Marcel for links. Also thanks to Jarrod, Ian, Burt and others for the link.


April 13, 2005

The latest issue of Guitar World (June 2005) features Kurt Cobain on the cover and a number of interesting Nirvana articles inside. "A three-part Guitar World exclusive in which we take a look back at the recording of Nirvana's first two groundbreaking albums and talk to those in attendance at the band's legendary Nevermind launch party." The story behind Bleach is courtesy of Charles R. Cross while British journalist and author Rob Jovanovic details Nevermind. The Nirvana feature, as mentioned, is concluded by an article about the launch party for Nevermind. There's also a large Kurt Cobain poster inside, and the tabs for Smells Like Teen Spirit. Thanks to Doug and Steve for the news.

The Guggenheim Museum in New York is currently featuring an exhibit which has a touch of Nirvana. "Slater Bradley's Doppelganger Trilogy (2001–04) conjures up three pop icons from the collective unconscious of our mass-mediated culture. All fallen heroes—two by suicide and one by a protracted descent into disrepute—these figures are perceived through the distancing lens of desire and memory. Each of the three videos is fashioned as a recording of a faux concert performance, using a technique reminiscent of what would have been employed to capture the event when it purportedly took place.

Factory Archives imagines Ian Curtis, lead singer of the short-lived punk band Joy Division, through the grainy haze of aging video stock. As if retrieved from the vaults of Factory Records, this fragment depicts an elusive performer just before the dawn of MTV, when the choreographed music video would forever change how culture consumes its rock 'n' roll. Phantom Release rehearses this cultural phenomenon as well as the ubiquitousness of the personal camcorder, offering an ersatz, 'amateur' recording of Kurt Cobain playing the guitar. Its studied casualness and raw ambience evoke the countless bootleg videos that can be downloaded from any number of Web sites devoted to all things Nirvana."
More info here.

Yet another Nirvana tribute album is in the works: "'The Piano Tribute to Nirvana' interprets [Nirvana's] songs with the fitting sounds of florid keys, flourishing and focusing on those Nirvana tunes that really made you FEEL. Lithium, All Apologies, as well as many other unforgettable gems are delivered in classical piano arrangements, providing a warm musical utopia, lifting the listener to a state of nirvana." The CD features 12 tracks and will be released on June 16, 2005. You can find more info here.


April 6, 2005

As mentioned before in this news section - the Kurt Cobain Memorial Committee have been fighting for the creation of some sort of permanent tribute to Kurt Cobain in his native Aberdeen, Washington. Now, a 'touch of Nirvana' has been added to the famous "Welcome to Aberdeen" sign. Here's the story - courtesy of Paula Horton and The Daily World: "A new sign telling people to 'Come As You Are' was added below the 'Welcome to Aberdeen' sign near the bluff in East Aberdeen on Monday. 'I think it's a good idea and it's about time,' said Kurt's grandfather, Leland Cobain of Montesano. 'I drive by there every day and look for it. I have been waiting for it to go up.' The sign is the handiwork of the Kurt Cobain Memorial Committee. 'After getting feedback from Kurt's fans across the world, we settled on 'Come As You Are' because it had dual meanings,' said committee co-chairman Jeff Burlingame, arts and entertainment editor for The Daily World. 'Nirvana fans will understand the significance, yet it's vague and appropriate enough that the meaning is applicable to everyone.

'It's nice to have the sign up in time for the anniversary of Kurt's death,' Burlingame said. 'Several people have contacted us and intend to make pilgrimages to pay their respects. I believe this new sign will, by far, be the most photographed landmark in the city.' The non-profit memorial committee was formed in May of 2004, with the goal of finding ways to honor Cobain in his hometown.

Public signage was the first step because it was the easiest and most cost-effective. The group also hopes to have a memorial park and youth center. 'I think this sign goes a long way toward showing people that Aberdeen finally recognizes the contributions of Kurt Cobain and Nirvana,' said committee co-chairman Paul Fritts, a member of the Aberdeen City Council. The committee paid $750 for a new 'Welcome to Aberdeen' sign. The old one was rusting and sported a large bullet hole. The sign construction was coordinated through Scott Olsen, the sign technician with the City of Aberdeen, who contracted for inmate labor at Stafford Creek Corrections Center. The city also provided the labor to remove old sign and install the new ones.

The committee has been featured on MTV.com, VH1, The Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, several regional radio stations and many more. The publicity helped bring in donations, which have come from across the globe, Burlingame said. 'I'm continually amazed by the overwhelming support we receive from around the world. I knew there were a ton of Kurt Cobain fans out there but wasn't sure any of them would be willing to help us out,' Burlingame said. 'We've received cash from several European countries, Canada and more. Many send letters thanking us for what we're doing. We've had kids give up their allowances to send them across the country to us. It's all quite humbling, really.'

The biggest contributor so far is Terry Kost of Aberdeen, owner of Best Shingle Sales in Hoquiam. 'He and his kids are Nirvana fans,' Burlingame said. 'Kost believes in what we're trying to achieve with our organization and we're forever in debt to his help.' With the first project completed, committee members are beginning work on other ways to honor Cobain, who died April 5, 1994. Donations to the Kurt Cobain Memorial Committee can be made at any Bank of the Pacific branch or online at www.kurtcobainmemorial.org."
Copyright 2005 The Daily World.


Nirvana will be added to the Library of Congress: "Astronaut Neil Armstrong's first words from the moon, speeches by President Wilson and Gen. Douglas MacArthur and songs by Al Jolson, Muddy Waters and Nirvana are among 50 recordings being added to the Library of Congress' National Recording Registry. There's plenty of music, from Victor Herbert's 'Gypsy Love Song' of 1898, through Glenn Miller's 'In the Mood' in 1939, to Nirvana's 1991 album 'Nevermind.' Performances must be 10 years old to qualify. This is the third group of recordings to be added to the registry." Read the full story here. Thanks to Mika and Joseph for the link.

Over at the website Seattle Sound they have been paying tribute to Kurt by offering their visitors to light a virtual candle. Go here for more info. Basically, April 5 2005 went with very little mention, if any, of Kurt Cobain in the media. I don't think there's ever been so little focus on Cobain on this day since 1994 than was the case this year. Of course, this is a remarkable contrast to last year which marked the 10th anniversary of his death. Back then magazines, newspapers, TV and radio was packed with Cobain tributes and Nirvana music. See the news section archive for April 2004 to get an idea of how extensive the media coverage was. Thanks to the few TV networks who paid tribute to Kurt also this year - most notably MTV in Germany. Also, let's not forget AIC frontman Layne Staley who passed away on April 5, 2002.

April 5, 2005


Kurt Cobain 1967-1994


April 4, 2005

Tomorrow (April 5), MTV Nordic will play 10 Nirvana videos in the show "Top 10 @ 10" which airs at 10 AM (CET). On MTV in Germany they are having a Nirvana/Kurt Cobain day tomorrow. Starting at 2 PM they will have a Videoclash with 'Nirvana against the world'. At 6.30 PM there is a 'Fortune Files' special which includes a segment on Cobain. Then at 7 PM there is a Nirvana videography. At 7.30 PM there is a Nirvana news special and then the classic Unplugged at 8 PM. "MTV Masters" with Nirvana airs at 9 PM followed by "No Apologies: Nirvana's MTV History" at 10 PM. The semi-rare show "Nirvana: Past, Present and Future" airs at 10.30 PM followed by a repeat of the Unplugged show at 11 PM. At midnight follows "Bare Witness" which goes behind the scenes on the Unplugged performance. The "Live and Loud" special follows at 12:30 AM and finally 'Night Videos' beginning at 2 AM will feature rock clips - including Nirvana. More info here. As far as I can tell, nothing Nirvana-related is on MTV, MTV2 and VH-1 in both the US and the UK. I think this is the first time since '94 that the major networks have opted not to do a Nirvana tribute on April 5 or 8.

Over in Canada, MuchMoreMusic will air the "Classic Albums" documentary about the Nevermind album at 7 PM tomorrow. It is followed by "Live! Tonight! Sold Out!!" at 8 PM.




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