Almost exactly eighteen years ago, Kurt Cobain’s body was found with a suicide note addressed to his childhood imaginary friend Boddah. The infamous Nirvana frontman, husband, and father had died at the age of 27 from a self-inflicted shotgun wound.
Besides leaving behind a suicide note, Cobain left behind the pressures of fame, a growing legion of devoted fans, his gritty artistic sensibilities, his wife, and his baby daughter.
In his suicide note, Cobain addressed them with tender, heartbreaking words.
“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,” said Cobain. “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,” Cobain continued. “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.”
And as evidenced by these following five interviews, Cobain’s sensitivities are one of many reasons that his legacy as a person and an artist lives on.
Part one of a 1993 interview where Kurt Cobain talked to a Seattle-based interviewer about his favorite book, Perfume by Patrick Suskind–a storyline that he used in “Scentless Apprentice.”
In this interview snippet, Cobain talked about this daughter with Courtney Love from Hole, the now-nineteen Frances Bean Cobain.
He quipped that a nanny changes her diaper and that he’s “just teaching her how to cuss and flip people off,” but the clip ends with an endearing scene where Cobain feeds her what looks like peanut butter from a jar.
Part one of an interview that MTV did in December of 1993 which appeared on the With The Lights Out boxset.
Cobain talked about his difficulty with guitar playing, Pat Smear being an official member of Nirvana, being judged because they are from Seattle, and told a singing Kim Deal (from the Breeders and Pixies) to “shut up.”
A dark-haired Cobain talked about how spontaneous the “In Bloom” video was to make and how Love is his best friend–they like to “be together all the time.” The best part of the interview is Cobain’s effortless smiling.
In this audio-only interview, Cobain talked about his conflict with good and evil, the dichotomy of his personality, his moodiness and how he’s perceived by the media and others, how he goes out of his way to look like he’s enjoying himself even though he “usually” is enjoying himself, and his relationship with opiates which “relieve some of the animosity” that he has towards people.
-Nadia Nior, CBS Radio Los Angeles