Thursday, May 11, 2006

I'd rather be hated for who I am, than loved for who I am not.

One day during the time when Michael Jackson’s’ “Black or White” was being vastly over played on local radio stations and people didn’t think “Summer of 69” was rock, I was “tripping” at a friends place. We were checking out new material (after slaving two months to collect Rs. 250 for the audio cassette) R got recorded from either Trax or by Weeramanthri. First song on side B was “Blackhole Sun” by Soundgarden. The second song broke my trip. It was grunge like I’ve never heard before. The crash metal guitar and the vocals were passionate and riveting at the same time. A combination that I think, at that time, was lacking even in the most popular rock band, Guns N Roses, which went from hard rock to pussy rock with songs like November Rain and Patience (maybe with the exception of the song “I use to love her”). Thus was my introduction to Kurt Cobain and Nirvana. The song was “Smells like Teen Sprit”.

This is not a lame Kurt Cobain tribute but a lame effort to spark interests on exploring the works of one of the most geniusly talented yet wholly misunderstood icons of the 20th century. This was a guy who didn’t want to attract the wrong kind of fans to his music. After it was revealed that the song “Polly” was played in the back ground during a gang rape incident Cobain went on to say, "A girl was raped by two wastes of sperm and eggs while they sang the lyrics to our song 'Polly.' I have a hard time carrying on knowing there are plankton like that in our audience” (Duh? If you don’t want people to listen to your music Kurt, go play in your god damn church!).

The second album, the first released under a major record label, was nothing short of a musical masterpiece. Initially not expecting to exceed 500,000 copies, Nevermind with its’ anthem-of-a-generation track went on to sell 3 million copies within the first six months in the US alone. With songs like come as you are, lithium, and of course, smells like teen spirit, it ushered in a whole new generation of frustrated Sri Lankan teenagers who appreciated rock music for what it was (These were trying times. As parents, teachers and girl friends alike, resented rock music. Rumor had it that some jerk-off from Prep. had got stoned and killed his parents after listening to “rock” music. The rumor was that he listened to rock music). Anyway after his overnight success, lead vocalist of Nirvana was quoted saying “The last thing I wanted be was famous” (wtf??? Cobain pay attention! If you don’t want to be famous stop writing killer lyrics, don’t sell your music to big record labels. For god sakes don’t form a band!).

Never the corperate ass-kisser, Cobain once got kicked out of his own album launch party for starting a food fight with Krist Novoselic (yeah! Way to go dude. The way to get your next album in to mainstream is to act like retards in public). These are just sighting of some weird straits in Cobain, which amount to nothing compared what’s on the net about the man. His health disorders, heroin addiction, marriage, ultimate death, suicide note and conspiracies are all that maketh the man.

The Citizens Commission on Human Rights sums up Cobain in what I think is the best net summary of his life as a person.

KURT COBAIN: 1967-1994

A talented and creative child, Cobain was misdiagnosed as "hyperactive" and prescribed the cocaine-like and highly addictive Ritalin. Side effects include insomnia, nausea, abdominal pain, hallucinations and a predisposition to later cocaine use. Sedatives were prescribed to counter the insomnia. The progression to street drugs, including heroin, was a given. Compounding the Ritalin were untreated chronic medical conditions that affected him his entire life, including a "burning, nauseous" stomach, which Cobain said heroin "quenched." He enrolled in a Los Angeles psychiatric drug recovery center. Thirty-six hours after admission, he bolted and ended his life with a single shotgun blast to his head. Heroin and Valium were found in his blood stream.

A Dying Plea

To Boddah

“Speaking from the tongue of an experienced simpleton who obviously would rather be an emasculated, infantile complain-ee. This note should be pretty easy to understand.

All the warnings from the punk rock 101 courses over the years, since my first introduction to the, shall we say, ethics involved with independence and the embracement of your community has proven to be very true. I haven't felt the excitement of listening to as well as creating music along with reading and writing for too many years now. I feel guity beyond words about these things.

For example when we're back stage and the lights go out and the manic roar of the crowds begins., it doesn't affect me the way in which it did for Freddie Mercury, who seemed to love, relish in the the love and adoration from the crowd which is something I totally admire and envy. The fact is, I can't fool you, any one of you. It simply isn't fair to you or me. The worst crime I can think of would be to rip people off by faking it and pretending as if I'm having 100% fun. Sometimes I feel as if I should have a punch-in time clock before I walk out on stage. I've tried everything within my power to appreciate it (and I do,God, believe me I do, but it's not enough). I appreciate the fact that I and we have affected and entertained a lot of people. It must be one of those narcissists who only appreciate things when they're gone. I'm too sensitive. I need to be slightly numb in order to regain the enthusiasms I once had as a child.

On our last 3 tours, I've had a much better appreciation for all the people I've known personally, and as fans of our music, but I still can't get over the frustration, the guilt and empathy I have for everyone. There's good in all of us and I think I simply love people too much, so much that it makes me feel too fucking sad. The sad little, sensitive, unappreciative, Pisces, Jesus man. Why don't you just enjoy it? I don't know!

I have a goddess of a wife who sweats ambition and empathy and a daughter who reminds me too much of what i used to be, full of love and joy, kissing every person she meets because everyone is good and will do her no harm. And that terrifies me to the point to where I can barely function. I can't stand the thought of Frances becoming the miserable, self-destructive, death rocker that I've become.

I have it good, very good, and I'm grateful, but since the age of seven, I've become hateful towards all humans in general. Only because it seems so easy for people to get along that have empathy. Only because I love and feel sorry for people too much I guess.

Thank you all from the pit of my burning, nauseous stomach for your letters and concern during the past years. I'm too much of an erratic, moody baby! I don't have the passion anymore, and so remember, it's better to burn out than to fade away.

Peace, love, empathy.
Kurt Cobain

Frances and Courtney, I'll be at your alter.
Please keep going Courtney, for Frances.
For her life, which will be so much happier without me.


April 5th marked the twelfth death anniversary of Kurt Cobain.


Curious Yellow said...

You know there's a conspiracy theory about whether he did commit suicide or not right? Also, there are a lot of fishy things about his suicude. He wasn't acting weird or anything on the day he blew his brains out. I think he previously tried to "commit suicide" in Italy or something like that but there was some talk of someone drugging his drink or something like that.
Have a google for it, I don't know the exact details.

Asvajit said...

A number of people strongly felt that Kurt's death was nothing short of homicide.Some felt this way cuz of all the discrepancies in the police report but a more substantial proof comes from the amount of heroin found in cobains blood during the autopsy. Apparantly his blood contained 1.52 milligrams of heroin per litre.Many people, including Tom Grant, the private investigatore hired by Courtney love, adamantly believed that there was no way Kurt could have shot himself when this far gone. Of course, many critics see this as bullshit and we all know how much the world loves controvesy. Who knows.You should watch Kurt & Courtney.

venus said...

Kurt Cobain is a genius

childof25 said...

I believe you mean 'was' a genius:)...the rumour was that prep kid listened to a heavy metal song backwards..which had 'secret' lyrics that caused him to pop his parents, right.

Theena said...

Kurt Cobain is a lot of things - hero, villain, melodic genius, a powerchord merchant, spokesman for an entire generation...

The media have used all the above to describe him. But I don't care. To me, he and his band of lunatics, Dave and Krist, are the reason I went off on a crazy journey of discovering music that matters.

The moment I heard the Smells like Teen Spirit riff, I knew my perception of music would change. And that maybe a cliche, but it is the truth.

Kurt made me love music, made me yearn to discover the most obscure bands and musicians.

Guns N Roses and Metallica - the first two rock bands that I liked - never made me want to do that. For that, Kurt will always have a place in my heart.

Thank you, good writer sir, for reminding me why I love the band and the man.