Kurt speaks

The driving force behind Nirvana on fame, youth, and Leave It to Beaver
By KURT ST. THOMAS  |  March 28, 2007

The night Nirvana first played Saturday Night Live, Kurt Cobain, the driving force behind Nirvana, also spoke with WFNX’s Kurt St. Thomas alone — about fame, youth, and Leave It to Beaver.

On Valerie Solanas, the woman who shot Andy Warhol, and her Scum Manifesto:
It’s an amusing little book. I laughed really hard when I read it. It’s really cool. I was almost embarrassed to realize that I agree with a lot of it. Basically, it’s just women taking over the world. And men agreeing to go out with a bow of grace. They should all be assassinated, and those who agree with the ideals of this little manifesto should be in concentration camps and fed bread and water. Whatever. I don’t remember the specifics. She’s willing to let the men who agree with it survive but then just die out like the dinosaurs. The book kind of inspired “Territorial Pissings.” That song’s about. . . . I guess you could call it an ode to women. My love and respect for them — and how they’re mistreated.

On autographs:
Autographs are really annoying. I’ve never understood why anyone would want an autograph. There are a lot of people whom I admire, you know? Look up to, respect, and all that. But I never wanted their autograph. If I ever wanted to say anything to them, I thought I’d just walk up and say hi. And if I didn’t have anything interesting to say, I wouldn’t say anything to them. But I’ve just never had any desire to have an autograph by anybody.

On Evel Knievel:
Like when I was a kid, Evel Knievel was a real big thing for me, but I never really wanted his autograph. So I just don’t understand it. That was the first thing that I wanted to be when I was a kid — a stunt man. I took all the bedding out of our house and put it on the deck. I’d get up on top of the roof and would jump off. I took a thin piece of metal one time and duct-taped it to my chest. Then I put a bunch of firecrackers on it and lit them on fire.

On his favorite bands:
The Pixies, the Breeders, the Melvins, Teenage Fan Club, Sonic Youth, Mudhoney, Dinosaur Jr., Bikini Kill, Witchiepoo — I know I’m forgetting some. Captain America, Shonen Knife, Jad Fair, lots of stuff. I mean, there’s still a good handful of bands that are great. I hope we can help out in some way, exploiting them. [Laughs.] Exposing them. That’s the problem with independent music. You can’t find it half the time. That’s why we decided to go to a major. We got tired of kids coming up to us at concerts saying, “We can’t find your record anywhere.”

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