NFC News 11/2003
November 29, 2003

The NFC Jag-Stang contest (scheduled to end on December 1st) has been postponed. Unfortunately, the person in charge of the contest has not been available for a few months and is not responding to repeated e-mails and notes. Since the person in charge of the contest is also the one donating the actual guitar, the contest will have to be put on hold for now. If I fail to reach this person I will have no choice but to cancel the contest. However, all entries will be saved and the artist we determine to be the winner will receive some sort of prize. For now, please do not send in any additional entries for the contest. I hope to have more info concerning the ill-fated contest soon.

"Every day, artists, authors and entertainers rely on the precious right to free expression and freedom of speech that lies at the bedrock of American society. That's why so many stars from the worlds of music, Hollywood, Broadway, fine art, dance, and literature have donated hundreds of items to the Auction for the American Way, starting 2PM, Sunday, November 30th on eBay. To preview items now, go to Fly to lunch with Nirvana bassist Krist Novoselic as he pilots his own plane!" Other items in the auction include a Red Hot Chili Peppers gold record, Radiohead signed poster, Led Zeppelin autographed artwork and more. Click here for more details on the Krist Novoselic auction.

More Krist stuff: "At the first annual Jimi Awards, held Nov 22 at the Westin Hotel, Krist was given an award, along with former WA Gov. Booth Gardner (who coached Jimi [Hendrix] in football when he was a kid) and Russell Simmons, the big hip-hop honcho. They were all deemed innovators who have a positive effect on youth. Krist's award was presented to him by Rob Glaser, who's involved with Real Networks and two new services; ABC News Live and MLB.TV (both online services). Best of all, Buddy Miles (who played with Jimi) was on hand, and Krist and another guitarist played a couple of songs with him, including "Hey Joe," a song Jimi did. Charles Cross was also present at the event." More info.

"There's a major Nirvana-related event going on in Moscow, Russia. A play called 'Nirvana', which describes the Kurt Cobain story, is staged in The Moscow Mayakovskiy Theatre. The stage director is Yuri Grymov, an ad-director and editor-in-chief of a youth magazine. A rock-singer, Naik Borzov, plays the main part. According to Grymov, the play mainly aims at showing that 'drugs are bad'. The official site is located here." Thanks to Andy.

Last month, the US magazine Blender named Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love as 'The Hottest Rock & Roll couple of all time'.

November 26, 2003

Today the brand new NFC Design was unveiled. Well, actually, it was published yesterday but there were some minor technical difficulties which should have been sorted now. The new layout is much more compact than the old and should make it easier to use the site. While the new layout uses the 'iframe' technology - it should work with most recent browsers. With older browsers, however, you may experience that a new window appears when you click links -- ideally the content should (for the most part) be loaded in the center frame. Most sections of NFC now conform to this new layout and will be available in the middle frame while the menu is still on the left. Some sections (such as this one and the discussion board) work independently and will fill the entire window.

When working on the new design, I decided to look through each and every file associated with the NFC to see what needed to be updated and what could be removed. Consequently, a lot of old content was deleted and many documents were updated and corrected in various ways. For one, the NFC FAQ had a major overhaul. Also, some files were moved to different sections, and some sections were removed entirely. At the same time a lot of new content was added - mostly in the form of interviews and articles. A website called 'The Happening' hosted a bunch of articles and the webmaster, Mike Ziegler, was kind enough to allow me to use them here as well. Thus, The NFC Interviews and Articles section now contains more than 150 different documents. Other sections updated include: The Vault, Nirvana Lyrics, Facts and Info and Misc. Files. Finally, a new ad deal has been worked out and thereby, an ad banner will now be displayed in the top of most pages. This may seem annoying and intrusive to some visitors but these days, the income from ad banners is the only way to financially secure the website. Donations also help a great deal but it is quite rare that people use this option.

I hope you will all like the new layout and not experience any technical difficulties with it. Thanks!

The previous NFC Poll "What would you most like to see released in DVD form?" has been concluded. You can see the result in the misc section.

November 25, 2003

In order to better serve the visitors of this website we need to collect some basic statistics. Please take a few minutes to fill out this survey. All you have to answer are some basic questions such as your age, gender and education level. You may also need to specify how often you visit this site, etc. The results of the survey will only be used internally and not be shared with any 3rd party or used for commercial purposes. Thanks a bunch in advance!

November 20, 2003

Looks like our old friend Krist Novoselic is looking for a new career: "Nirvana co-founder and bassist Krist Novoselic, who announced in August that he was fed up with the music industry, says he may run for Washington state lieutenant governor. Already active in Democratic party circles, Novoselic indicated he was wary about challenging two-term Lt. Gov. Brad Owen, also a Democrat and occasional rock musician, but doesn't want to remain on the sidelines in 2004 and has been talking to party leaders. 'I've been really contemplating how I want to get involved next year and make a contribution,' the 38-year-old told The Seattle Times. 'It's going to be a big year and I'm trying to find a way to fit into it.' The largely ceremonial position has few duties other than presiding over the state Senate and being ready to fill in when the governor is out of the state or incapacitated, and celebrities have filled it in the past." Story courtesy of The Associated Press and The Seattle Times.

The latest issue of Rolling Stone Magazine (#937) lists the '500 Greatest Albums Of All Time'. Nirvana is found on spot #17 with the legendary Nevermind. The MTV Unplugged album is #311 while In Utero is #439. "The overnight success story of the 1990s, Nirvana's second album and its totemic first single, 'Smells Like Teen Spirit,' shot up from the Northwest underground -- the nascent grunge scene in Seattle -- to kick Michael Jackson off the top of the Billboard album chart and blow poodle-hair metal off the map. No album in recent history had such an overpowering impact on a generation -- a nation of teens suddenly turned punk -- and such a catastrophic effect on its main creator. The weight of success led already troubled singer-guitarist Kurt Cobain to take his own life in 1994. But his slashing riffs, corrosive singing and deviously oblique writing, rammed home by the Pixies-via-Zeppelin might of bassist Krist Novoselic and drummer Dave Grohl, put the warrior purity back in rock & roll.

Lyrically, Cobain raged in code -- shorthand grenades of inner tumult and self-loathing. His genius, though, in songs such as 'Lithium,' 'Breed' and 'Teen Spirit' was the soft-loud tension he created between verse and chorus, restraint and assault. Cobain was a pop lover at heart -- and a Beatlemaniac: Nevermind co-producer Butch Vig remembers hearing Cobain play John Lennon's 'Julia' at sessions. Cobain also fought to maintain his underground honor. Ultimately, it was a losing battle, but it is part of this album's enduring power. Vig recalls when Cobain was forced to overdub the guitar intro to 'Teen Spirit' because he couldn't nail it live with the band: 'That pissed him off. He wanted to play [the song] live all the way through.' "
Courtesy of Rolling Stone. Interestingly, the best-selling album of all time (Thriller by Michael Jackson) is only #20 on the list. It is topped by Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band by The Beatles at #1.

Flameboy Comics have issued a novel called "GODSPEED - The Kurt Cobain Graphic". Some more info: "This title takes Kurt Cobain's story and plays it out as a graphic novel. From the luminous colours of an idyllic childhood through the flamboyant hues of success and stardom, Cobain's story inevitably declines into a much darker palette. The script draws from the singer's tortured self-image as well as straightforward biographical fact so that the tone of the book fluctuates between subjective dream-state and objective reality." The book is 96 pages and apparently offers some very nice artwork. One reviewer calls it a "must-read for all Kurt's fans" and another "a very fitting tribute". You can order it online here. Thanks to Lucas, Jason, Daniel Karen Peach and others for the news.

November 18, 2003

The current Limp Bizkit tour features the band doing a cover of Nirvana's You Know You're Right. In the news section of the official Limp Bizkit website you can find a short movie clip of the band rehearsing for the tour, including a brief clip of their You Know You're Right cover (unfortunately the clip is in the shitty Quicktime format). You can find it here. Apparently Bizkit frontman Fred Durst is a big Kurt Cobain fan and he has a large tattoo of Cobain on his chest. Limp Bizkit's current "back2basics" tour of the US and Canada with Korn runs until the end of November. If I'm not mistaken, Korn frontman Jonathan Davis is also a bit of a Nirvana and Kurt Cobain fan. Thanks to Daniel for the news.

In the November 5 2003 issue of the British tabloid 'Now' there is an article on Courtney Love losing custody of her daughter, Frances Bean. Check the article here: #1 & #2.

November 14, 2003

The Kurt Cobain 'Journals' book was recently released in a paperback edition featuring new material not found in the hardcover. Here is a detailed rundown of the extra material found in this edition: "These pages contain new material: 24, 25, 48, 49, 90, 91, 92, 93, 94, 95, 216, 217, 258 and 259. What is new: an oatmeal recipe, a mild complaint about a girlfriend situation (probably Tracy), lyrics for Blew and Mr. Moustache, a weird story about a serial killer called Chuck Taylor, possible notes for lyrics, a credits page for a proposed EP and lyrics to an unfinished song called 'Travelin white trash couple #1', and one more list of favorite records." Published by Riverhead Books. You can order the book online here.

Last month, The Seattle Times did an interview with Krist Novoselic. The interview focuses mostly on his current political activities: "Once a raging scarecrow of rock, he's now a smooth, suited activist who reads The Nation, seeks to change the state voting system and, at 6-foot-7, has been towering over an array of political events. The other night, he co-hosted a fund-raiser for Seattle City Councilwoman Heidi Wills' re-election campaign. And Thursday night, Novoselic will be at the Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture for the 30th anniversary reception for the Washington State Public Interest Research Group (WashPIRG). When Nirvana took off in 1991, 'We were outspoken about issues that we cared about,' Novoselic said. Human rights, women's rights, personal freedom. 'I guess we were more anti-stupidity than anything.' " Read the full article here.

In a recent issue of the British Q Magazine, Dave Grohl is asked about the unreleased Nirvana tracks: "There was so much music they made before I joined the band that's incredibly weird and there's probably a lot that Kurt recorded on his own that I've never heard, so there's a wealth of material - for lack of a better term - that'll be released in years to come. Me, Krist and Kurt, we didn't have too many outtakes. We had different versions of things and every session we had maybe one or two songs that didn't make it to the album - most of that's been bootlegged and a lot of it's just noise. So to me the most interesting stuff is really the early material." Courtesy of Q Magazine.

In the 10th anniversary issue of the British magazine Mojo they have an article called "The Mojo Hall of Fame" where Nirvana ranks as #9. Number one on the list is none other than Elvis Presley. In other news: Alice Wheeler is going to do a slideshow/discussion at The Experience Music Project museum in Seattle on December 7 at 6:30 pm. Price is $6 for EMP members, $8 for others. Wheeler photographed Nirvana on several occasions in the early years and throughout their career. She will show some of her Kurt Cobain pictures at the event and talk about them if people request it. Thanks to GGG.

- - - November 1, 2003 - - -

The October 18 2003 issue of the British magazine Kerrang! features a cover-story named "100 Gigs That Shook The World". It is basically a listing of the best and most important concerts in recent history, according to the magazine editors. Nirvana's legendary performance at the Reading Festival in 1992 is #1 on the list:

"There was magic in the air, but there was poison there also. Nirvana may well have slammed into the sky with their second album, Nevermind - 'the trouble is, we're afraid of heights', said bassist Krist Novoselic at the time - but they never flew above the black cloud of rumour and (sometimes) fact that hovered above them. A black cloud filled with drugs, recrimination, chaos, trouble and turmoil. A black cloud which, if you listened to the voices, would take the band down eventually. And in the end, it did. But not on this night it didn't. Minded and scornful of the whispers regarding his dependency and chronic ill-health, when the stage lights dimmed over a field in Berkshire, Kurt Cobain - appearing frail, dressed in hospital smock - was wheeled onto the stage in a wheelchair, guided by music journalist Everett True, the man credited for breaking 'grunge' in the UK. The crowd, 'getting' the joke in a finger click, hollered with humor and approval, and a mood was set. Cobain lurched to his feet and tore off the strangled riff to Territorial Pissings. And this mood was torn apart, all for the good.

Nirvana headlining at Reading in 1992 was something you had to see, and if you didn't see it then it was something you pretended you saw. The band had performed on this very stage, although much lower on the bill, just the year previous. But now, topping a bill they largely hand-picked, Nirvana - in a way that meant so much more than record sales - were the biggest, the most incandescent band in the world. They had killed glam metal, had wrestled power away from the record companies, had filled everything with life. The record companies, as they always do, would put more crap back in its place, but not yet they wouldn't. And certainly not tonight. When it came to Smells Like Teen Spirit, the song that had lifted them to this point in the first instance, Nirvana separated the body of the song from the opening riff with a few bars of Boston's AOR 'classic' More Than A Feeling. The point, they seemed to say, was that there's only two types of music, good and bad, and the distance between the two may not have been as great as you might like to think. Maybe so, but tonight's music was very good indeed - Drain You, Lithium, Come As You Are ... all of it. It didn't need a singer to die to elevate this band to 'classic' status. Because it happened right here, it happened on this night.

Nirvana finished with a feral Negative Creep from Bleach and a lead guitar rendition through The Star Spangled Banner, a soon-to-die guitarist from Washington State nodding his cap to a long dead guitarist from Washington State. It would all change after this, not always for the bad but not always for the good either. And anyone who saw Nirvana perform their headline set at the Reading Festival in 1992 hardly needs reminding just what was lost less than two years later."
Nirvana also appears on spot #10 with their gig at The Roxy in LA on August 15, 1991 and their Unplugged show is listed as #28. Also, on #38, is their concert with Mudhoney and TAD from December 3 1989. Interestingly, the 1995 performance by the Foo Fighters at the Reading Festival is #6 on the list. Story courtesy of Kerrang! Magazine.

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