Courtney Love, the widow of iconic Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain, named a list of her favourite songs ever created by the grunge pioneers. The Hole frontwoman, who first met Cobain at Portland’s Satyricon nightclub in January 1990, was married to the acclaimed singer for two years after getting wed on Waikiki Beach in Hawaii in 1992 before his tragic suicide.
Their relationship was fast and furious and under the glaring spotlight of the media, built around intense creativity and heavy touring amid major commercial success through both bands, the pair had little semblance of what constitutes a life of contentment. While reflection on her career and life as part of an Instagram live Q&A, Love was drawn into a conversation about some of her favoured Nirvana tracks for the first time.
Courtney Love has become so entwined with the legend of Nirvana and its mercurial frontman Kurt Cobain that it feels as though she is almost a part of the band. Always accompanying her husband through festival circuits and worldwide domination, Love became an icon of the moment. It means that her favourite songs offer an insight not only into he relationship with Kurt but the band and the scene too.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, Love picked out ‘Heart Shaped Box’ taken from 1993 album In Utero, a track which she attempted to get her hands on while she heard Cobain originally writing the guitar riff. “We had this huge closet,” she recalled in an interview with Rolling Stone in 1994. “And I heard him in there working on Heart-Shaped Box. He did that in five minutes,” she recalls, “[I went] Knock, knock, knock. ‘What?’ ‘Do you need that riff?’ ‘Fuck you!’ Slam.”
Love has also been too willing to reveal the origins of ‘Heart Shaped Box’, responding to Lana Del Rey on Twitter after she covered the track. “You do know the song is about my Vagina right? ‘Throw down your umbilical noose so I can climb right back,’ umm,” Love wrote in a public message to Del Rey. “On top of which some of the lyrics about my vagina I contributed. So umm next time you sing it, think about my vagina will you?” What a touching thought.
Moving away from Courtney Love’s vagina, she referenced ‘Serve The Servants’ in another nod of the head to In Utero as well as ‘Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge On Seattle’ from the same record.
Loves’ final choice, Nevermind’s fan favourite ‘In Bloom’. The song was originally written by Cobain by way of quietly mocking the new pop fans the band were acquiring. A bittersweet way of delivering a message under the guise of a grunge pop gem.
- ‘Heart-Shaped Box’ – In Utero
- ‘Serve The Servants’ – In Utero
- ‘Frances Farmer Will Have Her Revenge On Seattle’ – In Utero
- ‘In Bloom’ – Nevermind