A confluence of events, including the impending induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, has put Kurt Cobain and Nirvana in the forefront of our pop culture consciousness lately. Susceptible as anyone else, I threw on Nevermind last night and, holy shit, did it sound great. Can you imagine a record like that becoming the biggest thing in the world today? I burned out on listening to it years ago, but now it sounds totally fresh again. Anyway, remaining core Nirvana members Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic appeared on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon last night, talking about how quickly the band got huge, destroying their instruments, as well as what it was like when Paul McCartney joined them in the studio.
R.E.M.‘s Michael Stipe will induct Nirvana into the Hall of Fame tonight. Word is that Joan Jett will be on hand to help them celebrate with a performance. Watch the Tonight Show interview below.
Back in December we brought you the news that Hoquiam, Washington would be celebrating Nirvana Day on April 10th this year. Although Hoquiam was not Kurt Cobain‘s hometown, he did live there for a brief time, as explained by the town’s mayor. Picking up on the trend, Cobain’s actual hometown, Aberdeen, Washington has announced that February 20th will become Kurt Cobain Day. And this isn’t just a one time deal, folks. February 20th will be Kurt Cobain Day in Aberdeen….forever.
“Aberdeen residents may justifiably take pride in the role our community played in the life of Kurt Cobain and the international recognition our community has gained from its connections with Kurt Cobain and his artistic achievements.” reads a city proclamation.
Nirvana will be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on April 10th.
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When the 2014 Grammys air this Sunday, we’ll be treated to yet another all-star jam, but this one holds promise. It’s an FOD (friends of Dave) free for all, featuring many of the players from Dave Grohl‘s Sound City film, including Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails, Fleetwood Mac‘s Lindsey Buckingham, and longtime Grohl pals Queens of the Stone Age, all of them nominated in some way for awards this year (Buckingham’s collaboration with Delta Rae, “If I Loved You,” earned a nomination for producer Rob Cavallo).
Coupled with the not-earth-shattering-but-still-pretty-cool treat of seeing Paul McCartney and Ringo Starr play together again, this might just make an interesting telecast. The Grohl jam will close out the show. Maybe Macca and Ringo will jump up there, who knows? Follow us on Twitter to catch a live-tweeting of events as they unfold on Sunday night.
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Look, country music, we’re trying to work with you here. You are an original American artform. You spring from a deep storytelling tradition of struggle and woe, describing universal truths about the human condition in a plain but somehow poetic way. Sometimes it just seems like you’ve lost the plot completely, but then our faith is often restored by some of the artists working a bit outside of the mainstream, from Jason Isbell and Sturgill Simpson to the legendary Steve Earle or his son Justin Townes Earle.
But then the 2013 Country Music Awards happen and make the entire genre look like a caricature of big hats and mediocre pop masquerading as country. When the headlines coming off your awards show all highlight a parody performance by the redneckiest reality TV stars ever (Duck Dynasty), rather than a surprise win for Entertainer of the Year by respected country star George Strait, you better start doing some soul-searching. And how about the “Pinnacle Award” being awarded to a pop star who hasn’t recorded a country song in years (Taylor Swift)?
Then again, there were more good moments this year than last. In addition to Strait’s win, we got a tribute (featuring Strait and Alan Jackson) to one of the all-time greats, George Jones, who died this year, and nods to Kenny Rogers, an appearance by Alison Krauss, and Dave Grohl rocking the drum kit with the Zac Brown Band.
Below is the full list of winners. Until next time, save country music.