In the spring of 2014, the surviving members of Nirvana took the stage in New York’s Barclays Center. The band had just been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, and were about to perform four songs. But the obvious absence of their late frontman, Kurt Cobain, raised questions that initially seemed insuperable: Who would sing? Who could sing with Nirvana? Who could replace him? There’s an immense difficulty implicit in covering any famous artist’s works, as covers spur comparisons … read more
Last year, Billboard Magazine listed the 50 Greatest Album Covers of All Time. Number seven on that list was Nirvana’s Nevermind. This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the album’s release. For Saturday’s anniversary, as he did for the 15th anniversary, the baby in the photograph, Spencer Elden, recreated the famous photo for the same photographer, John Chapelle, and the same $200 his parents received in 1991. The cover of a naked baby underwater chasing a dollar bill on a fish hook (superimposed … read more
The MTV Video Music Awards stage has turned into a battleground of shade time and time again. As we wait in anticipation of the drama that may unfold this Sunday at the 2016 awards, we’re looking back at some of the wildest moments in VMAs beef history, from fist-throwing rockers to unabashedly outspoken rappers. Nicki Minaj vs. Miley Cyrus, 2015 It all started when Minaj and Taylor Swift exchanged heated comments after the rapper tweeted, “If your video celebrates women with very slim bodies, you … read more
The sun sets on summer as the shade rolls in with the 2016 VMAs in all of its petty glory.
MTV’s award show for music videos has lived at the corner of culture and controversy since its birth in 1984 when Madonna writhed her way out of a wedding cake, clad in a lace maxi bustier, and onto center stage for “Like A Virgin.” It was a time when society had attention spans that appreciated music videos on televisions in their entirety rather than letting them play in the background on a laptop … read more
All apologies to Nirvana fans. Justin Bieber’s “Purpose” world star stopped in Seattle last week, and in his latest attempt to make adults loathe him, the pop star went out of his way to look like Kurt Cobain. Dressed in grungey, ripped designer jeans and a shirt with Cobain’s face on it under not one, but two, 90s-looking flannels — one tied around his waist, something the late Nirvana singer probably never did — Bieber wooed the young audience at the KeyArena at Seattle Center. In … read more
Dave Grohl and Beck paid tribute to David Bowie at a pre-Grammy party on Sunday night (February 14).
Beck took lead vocals while Dave played the drums and was joined by his fellow surviving Nirvana members Pat Smear on the guitar and Krist Novoselic on bass guitar.
The supergroup delighted the star-studded audience at Clive Davis’ Beverly Hills bash by performing The Man Who Sold The World to mark David’s passing last month (Jan16).
They weren’t the only musical stars to pay tribute to David, as … read more
Let the countdown begin.
We have just hours to go until the Grammys and that also means, we’re just hours away from finally seeing and hearing Lady Gaga’s tribute to the late David Bowie.
I caught up with National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) president Neil Portnoy last night to get the lowdown on Gaga’s performance.
“She will take us through quite a bit of history of David Bowie’s repertoire,” Portnoy said at the Academy and Clive Davis’ Pre-Grammy Gala at the Beverly Hilton Hotel. … read more
Smells like pent-up resentment. Twenty-two years after Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain killed himself, his ex-girlfriend has finally taken to Facebook to slam the rocker’s widow Courtney Love as a “sociopathic money hungry, fame mongering, terribly dressed NO TALENT s— bag.” Mary Lou Lord, a Boston-based indie musician who dated Cobain before he was famous, claimed Love had used her “grieving widow” status to spread vicious lies about Lord during the 1990s, according to the website Alternative … read more
The success of Straight Outta Compton, which was No. 1 at the box office for the third straight week, has reminded Hollywood that people are suckers for movies about the music they love. And while there is no shortage of biopics about individual singers – Ray Charles in Ray, Johnny Cash in Walk the Line, Tina Turner in What’s Love Got to Do With It, Loretta Lynn in Coal Miner’s Daughter, Ritchie Valens in La Bamba, just to name a few – there’s a surprising dearth of movies that tell the real … read more
This Sunday will mark the 31st annual MTV Video Music Awards, and in anticipation of the big day, let’s look back — 20 years back to be precise — at what the VMAs looked like in 1995.
To set the scene, recall that Dennis Miller hosted, TLC took home Video of the Year for “Waterfalls,” Hootie and the Blowfish were named Best New Artist and Michael Jackson received the Video Vanguard Award after opening the show with a 15-minute medley of hits.
They don’t make the VMAs like they used to. … read more
Most teens don’t find music history in their dad’s stuff, but Maggie Poukkula’s dad is Seattle musician Tony Poukkula, who was a friend of Kurt Cobain. Her find? Photos of Nirvana’s first concert, performed by then 20-year-old Cobain and his new band in March 1987 in Tony Poukkula’s basement. “My dad showed me them a while back, but he never mentioned that’s what was going on in the photos,” Maggie Poukkula, 19, tells Rolling Stone. “I found out because of all the articles. I didn’t realize it was … read more
When 19-year-old Maggie Poukkula posted some photos of her dad’s old days as a rocker, playing alongside Kurt Cobain before he became famous, she didn’t realize she was sharing photos of Nirvana’s first-ever show. The teen’s father, Tony Poukkula, was friends with Cobain in high school, and according to the blog Alternative Nation, the event pictured just happened to be Nirvana’s debut gig – played in March 1987 at Poukkula’s Redmond, Washington, home. Tony Poukkula played second guitar alongside … read more
Spoiler alert: Director Benjamin Statler’s docudrama “Soaked In Bleach” ends with former Seattle Police chief Norm Stamper saying he would reopen the investigation into the death of Kurt Cobain, if he were calling the shots today. But Stamper was the guy in charge from 1994 to 2000, including the time of Cobain’s death. He now insists that Seattle Police should “have taken steps to study patterns involved in the behavior of key individuals who had a motive to see Kurt Cobain dead.” He went on to … read more
This photo was taken right before Dave Grohl proved his status as an ultimate rock star. When he commits to a show, the dude isn’t kidding. He fell off the stage in Grothenberg, Sweden and broke his leg on Friday. Then he went to the hospital, received a cast, and finished the show. I’m not even a fan of Foo Fighters music, but this story makes me want to buy their tickets. For comparison’s sake: I recently went to a concert for one of my favorite musical acts. Although the performance was … read more
Francis Bean Cobain shall grace the cover of the upcoming issue of Rolling Stone. The cover hasn’t been revealed yet, but this gorgeous shot from David LaChapelle reminds us that Frances is a breathtaking young woman. She has Kurt’s blazingly blue eyes and has grown up to be so lovely. Frances is promoting the Montage of Heck documentary of Kurt’s life. The film will air on HBO next month. I can’t believe she’s 22 years old! It truly seems like yesterday when I heard first heard Nirvana’s … read more