Kurt Donald Cobain was born on February 20, 1967. Several of his relatives had musical talent. His Aunt Mari played the guitar, and his Uncle, in a band.
As a child, Kurt enjoyed drawing and listening to music. One of his favorite groups was the Beatles. He also had a “kiddie” drum set and played the piano. He had a sister, Kim, who was born in 1971. At the age of nine, his parents divorced. He went and lived with his father, and visited his mother and sister on weekends. His father re-married, and he continued to live with his father. He disliked his step-mother, Jenny, and her two children. Kurt thought that his father liked his step children more than he liked Kurt. For one of his birthdays’, he received a guitar for a present.
In 1982, he left his father’s house, and started living with relatives, and then eventually moved in to his mother’s house. Cobain then discovered a band called the Melvins, and became friends with Buzz Osbourne, who was a member of the band.
In 1985, Kurt started his first band, “Fecal Matter”. He met bassist Krist Novoselic, and drummer Aaron Buckhard. The group later changed their name to Nirvana. They recorded their first single, a cover of the song Love Buzz. It was released on Sub Pop Records, in 1988. Buckhard left the band, and another drummer, Chad Channing, took his place. In 1989, the group released their first album, Bleach. It was known for its significantly darker tone than their others works (Excluding Love Buzz and their Beatles-esque, jangle pop original, About A Girl), as seen in the songs Negative Creep and Paper Cuts (In fact, Kurt said that 80% of the album's lyrics were just meaningless, overtly negative lines that he would write on the way to the studio). In 1990, he met Courtney Love, who he would later marry. Later in the year, Channing was kicked out, and a friend of the band, Dale Crover, replaced him. Crover left the band, in late 1990. Cobain and Novoselic went to see a local band, Scream. They were impressed by their drummer, Dave Grohl. Scream later disbanded, and Grohl met Novoselic. Grohl was then later asked to join Nirvana. He played his first show with Nirvana in October 1990.
In 1991, the band left Sub Pop, and joined Geffen Records. In September 1991, the group released Nevermind, which became a huge success. The band grew resentful towards the success of their single, Smells Like Teen Spirit; eventually, they started playing the song as infrequently as possible. A second single, Come As You Are, was released in early 1992. Two more singles were released in 1992, Lithium and In Bloom. In February 1992, Cobain married Courtney Love, and in August 1992, their daughter, Frances Bean Cobain, was born. Also in August, Nirvana played one of their most famous concerts at the Reading Festival. In December 1992, Insecticide was released. It was made up of B-sides, rarities, and radio appearances.
In September 1993, the band released their third album, titled In Utero. Despite being an "anti-record" (that is, a deliberately non-commercially friendly album, often the work of a famous band that resents its mainstream success), the album did very well, selling 180,000 copies in the United States in the first week of its release. The band filmed a concert for MTV Unplugged in November 1993. On March 4, 1994, in his hotel room, he overdosed on drugs, trying to commit suicide, and was rushed to a hospital. He survived the overdose, but was put into a comatose. Back in the U.S. on March 18, the police came to Cobain’s home to try to talk him out of suicide. He had locked himself inside a room with a gun. He then traveled away and went to a rehabilitation clinic, but only stayed a few days. He escaped the clinic (by climbing over the fence, while he was outside), and took a plane home. Kurt Cobain then committed suicide by shooting himself. He was found on April 8, 1994, but is believed to have shot himself on April 5 1994. There have been many rumors that he was murdered. There was a large amount of methadone found in his blood, pointing to the possibility that someone drugged him and shot him. The position of the shotgun also suggested the possibility of a murder: Kurt had his left hand wrapped around the barrel, but Kurt was left-handed; therefore, if he did shoot himself, he would have used his right hand to pull the trigger, even though using his left hand would make more sense. In addition, the location of the shell was located on the opposite side of where it should have been.
After his death, his band mates wanted to release a box set with all Nirvana rarities and outtakes, but they found it too difficult to go though the tapes.
In November 1994, the band’s MTV Unplugged concert was released on CD, and in 1996, a live CD, titled From The Muddy Banks Of The Wishkah, was released. In 2002, a greatest hits CD, titled Nirvana, was released. One new song was released on it, the band’s last recording together, You Know You’re Right. In 2004, a box set named With The Lights Out (the title is taken from a line in the band’s song Smells Like Teen Spirit: With the light's out/It's less dangerous) with Nirvana rarities, B-sides, and outtakes was released. In 2005, a single disc compilation featuring the “best” songs from With The Lights Out was released. In 2009, two major Nirvana releases became available to the public: First, Nirvana's legendary 1992 performance at Reading was released under the name Live at Reading. Second, in order to celebrate Bleach's 20th anniversary, a special edition of Bleach was released; this repackaging featured remastered versions of the original songs, the never-before-released live performance at The Pine Theatre, and numerous pictures of Kurt and the band.
As seen above, 2009 was a somewhat big year for Nirvana. However, events in 2009 also resulted is some controversy regarding Kurt: In September, Guitar Hero 5 was released, featuring Kurt Cobain as a playable charater; this allowed the player to make him rap, scream death metal, etc. (Refer to this page for more details).
- Bleach (1989, Nirvana)
- Blew - EP (1989, Nirvana)
- Candy/Molly's Lips (1991, Nirvana/The Fluid) (Split Single)
- Here She Comes Now/Venus In Furs (1991, Nirvana/Melvins) (Split Single)
- Nevermind (1991, Nirvana)
- Insecticide (1992, Nirvana) (Rarities And B-Sides) (Also painted the cover art, credited as "Kurdt Cobain")
- Hormoaning (1992, Nirvana) (Austrailian and Japan exclusive tour EP)
- Nevermind, It's An Interview (1992, Nirvana) (Live Interview)
- In Utero (1993, Nirvana)
- Oh, The Guilt/Puss (1993, Nirvana/The Jesus Lizard) (Split Single)
- MTV Unplugged: Live In New York (1994, Nirvana) (Live Acoustic Album, filmed on November 19th, 1993)
- Live! Tonight! Sold Out! (1994, Nirvana) (VHS/Laserdisc video)
- Singles (A box set with all the singles from Nevermind and In Utero, except Pennyroyal Tea, from In Utero, 1995, Nirvana)
- From The Muddy Banks Of The Wishkah (1996, Nirvana) (Live Compilation) (Recorded from 1989-1994)
- Nirvana (2002, Nirvana) (Compilation)
- With The Lights Out (2004, Nirvana) (Box Set)
- Classic Albums: Nirvana - Nevermind (2005, Nirvana) (DVD Documentary on Nevermind)
- Sliver: The Best Of The Box (2005, Nirvana)
- Live! Tonight! Sold Out! (2006, Nirvana) (DVD Release)
- MTV Unplugged: Live In New York (2007, Nirvana) (DVD Release)
- Live at Reading (2009, Nirvana) (CD / DVD Release)
- Bleach: 20th Anniversary Edition (2009, Nirvana) (CD Release)
- Icon (2010, Nirvana) (Compilation)
- Live at the Paramount (2011, Nirvana) (DVD Release)
- Nevermind: 20th Anniversary Edition (2011, Nirvana) (CD Release)
- In Bloom (Sub Pop Version) (1990, Nirvana)
- Smells Like Teen Spirit (1991, Nirvana)
- Come As You Are (1992, Nirvana)
- Lithium (1992, Nirvana)
- In Bloom (1992, Nirvana)
- Sliver (1993, Nirvana)
- Heart Shaped Box (1993, Nirvana)
- You Know You're Right (2002, Nirvana)
Fecal Matter Band Members
- Kurt Cobain (Obviously) - lead vocals, guitar (1985-1986)
- Dale Crover - drums, bass (1985)
- Greg Hokanson - drums (1985-1986)
- Buzz Osborne - bass guitar (1986)
- Mike Dillard - drums (1986)
- Krist Novoselic - bass guitar (1986)
Nirvana Band Members
- Kurt Cobain (Obviously) - lead vocals, guitar (1987-1994)
- Krist Novoselic - bass guitar (1987-1994)
- Dave Grohl - drums, backing vocals (1990-1994)
- Aaron Burckhard - drums (1987-1988)
- Dale Crover - drums (1988, 1990)
- Dave Foster - drums (1988)
- Chad Channing - drums (1988-1990)
- Jason Everman - guitar (1989)
- Dan Peters - drums (1990)
- Pat Smear (Touring) - guitar, backing vocals (1993-1994)
- Lori Goldston (Touring) - cello (1993-1994)