Sunday, April 26, 2015

365 Project - Day 116 - "Finding Nirvana"

April 26, 2015 - "Finding Nirvana"

Last night as I sat at my computer writing, I could hear my soon-to-be 14-year-old son singing along to some music in his bedroom. It took me a minute to register what it was that he was singing - then it hit me: He was singing "Dumb" by Nirvana... from their "In Utero" album.

I had an instant moment of pride! Then I had a flashback to April of 1994, when I found out that Kurt Cobain had committed suicide. That day I had walked from my house on South Street all the way down Main Street to "Seattle Espresso", my favorite hangout. When I got there it was pretty quiet, and people were sobbing. The radio was on... I think it was tuned to WXCI, the station for WestConn here in Danbury - and they were talking about Kurt Cobain. I can't remember who it was that told me... it might have been my girlfriend at the time, who I was meeting there... it might have been someone else - but regardless, someone told me what happened and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I remember I just sat down on the couch, completely blown away by the news.

I had been a Nirvana fan since their first album "Bleach". That album came out in the summer of '89, but I didn't catch wind of it until the following year - and I was instantly hooked. By the time "Nevermind" came out in '91 I was fully addicted to Nirvana. I just really loved their sound... and I found Cobain's lyrics to be just as much of an influence on my poetry and writing as those of Jim Morrison.

I saved every copy of Rolling Stone and other magazines that featured Nirvana or Kurt Cobain. As you can see in today's photo, I still have a bunch of them.

For my 17th birthday the only thing I wanted was a copy of "In Utero" which had just been released. My brother Kenny bought it for me... and to me it was the greatest gift ever.

I was glued to the TV when the "Nirvana - MTV Unplugged in New York" show aired for the first time... and I waited in line to buy both a CD and a Vinyl copy of the album when it was released.

I paid just shy of $50 for a copy of "Nirvana - Pissing in Action" - a live CD that wasn't available in the U.S. at the time. That was a hell of a lot of money to be spending on a CD in those days. Hell, it STILL is a hell of a lot of money for something like that!

When the boxed set "With the Lights Out" was released in 2004 it was the only thing I wanted for Christmas. My mom actually bought it for me... and to me it was the greatest gift ever.

For my 30th birthday my brother Peter gave me a collectible figurine of Kurt Cobain playing the guitar - based on the "Smells Like Teen Spirit" video. Again, to me it was the greatest gift ever.

One of my few "regrets" in life is passing up the chance to go see Nirvana in Springfield, Massachusetts in November of '93. The concert was on a Wednesday night and I had school and work the next day... so I gave up my ticket, and promised myself I'd definitely see them the next time they came around. Unfortunately there never was a "next time".

It's hard to believe that this month marks 21 years since Cobain's death. So much has changed since then... and the music just isn't quite the same.

And now I hear Nirvana songs being played on "Classic Rock" stations - and even on some AM stations. I find their albums in bargain bins of used CDs and, from time-to-time, on sale for around $5.99 on iTunes.

It makes me feel old!

Very, VERY old!

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