December 13, 2012

Paul McCartney performs with what's left of Nirvana — Dave Grohl, Krist Novoselic, and Pat Smear.

At the Concert for Sandy Relief, they played a new song:
It was a stomping riff like a grunge homage to the Beatles’ “Helter Skelter,” and it looked like Mr. McCartney was having fun belting lyrics like “Mama, watch me run/Mama let me have some fun” as the band bashed away. 
Would Kurt Cobain have approved? On the one hand, why should that matter? He checked out. But also:
The Beatles were an early and lasting influence on Cobain; his aunt Mari remembers him singing "Hey Jude" at the age of two.
That was Paul McCartney he was imitating.
"My aunts would give me Beatles records," Cobain told Jon Savage in 1993, "so for the most part [I listened to] the Beatles [as a child], and if I was lucky, I'd be able to buy a single." Cobain expressed a particular fondness for John Lennon, whom he called his "idol" in his posthumously-released journals, and he admitted that he wrote the song "About a Girl," from Nirvana 1989 debut album Bleach, after spending three hours listening to Meet The Beatles!
So maybe he preferred John, but Paul's the closest you can get to John these days, and there was quite a bit of Paul on "Meet The Beatles."

27 comments:

garage mahal said...

Kurt Cobain allegedly once said "I like the Beatles, but I hate Paul McCartney"?

Couldn't agree more. McCartney always just reeked of phoniness to me.

Shouting Thomas said...

Cobain expressed a particular fondness for John Lennon, whom he called his "idol"

No wonder he committed suicide!

Lennon was such a dumb shit. He was determined to tape a giant "Please Kill Me" sign on his ass! He seemed unable to understand that he was just a popular musician, and not some fucking world saver philosopher. The guy spent his life begging some nut to off him.

And, he could have just devoted himself to playing music, taking drugs and boffing beautiful women! Until he was 80!

Springsteen was just terrible. I happened into his segment just as he was droning on about his worship of all the various liberal victim groups. What an atrocity! He's a complete jerk. I couldn't stand to listen to him play after that bullshit.

Shouting Thomas said...

Nirvana was a pretty bad band.

They weren't around for long, either. Their main claim to fame is Cobain's suicide.

Hard to understand how his backup band keeps living off that thin gruel.

Patrick said...

Was it just my television, or did Roger Daltrey turn into an orange Bob Dylan?

edutcher said...

Hmmm, I wondered if they also sang, "We Are The World"?

How much of that money gets to anybody will be interesting to see, but it gives the drugged-out rockers a chance to polish their halos.

(and, yes, I agree with Shout (that Lennon was an idiot and the boss is just a Lefty whiner))

Shouting Thomas said...

McCartney always just reeked of phoniness to me.

I like McCartney a lot.

He understands perfectly that, as Dylan would say, he's just a "song and dance man."

That's a good thing.

Sam L. said...

Krist lives in a very small wide spot in the road not far from The Mighty Columbia River.

Surfed said...
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chrisnavin.com said...

I think Cobain was doing something of interest with dynamics (loud then suddenly soft), and quite interesting with melody, sounds, words and their meaning.

He wouldn't have had such influence otherwise as he tapped into teenage angst, counter-culture sentiment and self-doubt. Do I like it? Not so much.

Surfed said...

Meet the Beatles/With the Beatles (and attendant singles) caused me to buy a guitar and start going through their catalouge. It's been nigh on 50 years now and I'm still looking up their chord changes and progressions. As an aside, my inner city school kids know some of the songs through Michael Jackson's purchase of their catalouge and licensing it for commercials (something the Beatles haver never countanced). I guess the ghost of Michael is keeping their music alive for generations of children to come. It's funny to watch the look of recognition when LeCharles knows one of their songs through tv commericials that I play. One of the their faves is "I Saw Her Standing There". And, of course, any of their Motown covers such as "You Really Got a Hold on Me"(paraphrase - "My great Gran listens to da' Miracles sing that song").

Renee said...

With reflection, Nirvana wasn't great. If Cobain was still alive, he would be a judge on American Idol.

Surfed said...

My inner city school kids have absolutely NO CLUE as to Nirvana or Curt Cobain. The Beatles they know.

chrisnavin.com said...

I'm really heartened when popular and obviously intelligent musicians just keep their mouths shut, especially about politics.

Let your music speak for you and as you did what you thought you had to do.

chrisnavin.com said...

And there are plenty of stupid musicians as well, not just ignorant, but pretty stupid.

Ann Althouse said...

I thought Nirvana was pretty great, but that suicide was horrifically destructive. Cobain hurt a lot of people.

chrisnavin.com said...

Anxiety, a stomach problem he claims was physiological, and heroin use.

There's an uptick in heroin use because a lot of kids are starting on prescription pain meds, then going to the cheaper heroin.

It's also chic in a way, unlike, say, meth.

ricpic said...

How do you know a person, or a whole culture for that matter, has entered the realm of the post-human (in the bourgeois sense of human)? When Rock is his/its Church.

chrisnavin.com said...

Ricpic, maybe, maybe not. I don't want certain people deciding that I can only participate in hymns, and am exposed to less morally decadent forms of art.

Al Gore, of all people, Southern Baptist preacher-cum-Global warming proselytizer, amateur poet, carbon-credit salesman and receiver of professional massages, supported Tipper's attack on the laughably bad and obscene 2 live crew.

I do agree that much modern music can have destructive effects, and that for many, it's all they know, but there is a place for art where it challenges religious authority, politics, moral authority, conventional wisdom etc.

Condemn it at your peril.

garage mahal said...

Cobain had an ear like nobody else. I remember watching him on MTV Unplugged doing a Leadbelly tune that completely blew me away. I think it was Burroughs who turned him onto Leadbelly.

mccullough said...

Nirvana is very good. They suffer from so many inferior imitators but the music sounds pretty fresh still. They also did some great covers.

Amartel said...

Lennon-McCartney was greatness. Lennon worship and the obligatory contrapuntal McCartney contempt is tired and lame. There is no Lennon-McCartney without McCartney. McCartney carried on after the Beatles and had a lot of, proudly, admittedly, silly love song pop hits. He and Elton were tied (or close) for most popular hits in the 1970s. Lennon rested on his considerable laurels after the Beatles and counted on the press to keep him relevant. In the absence of any recent hits, relevance for Lennon increasingly relied on saying snotty things about McCartney. Then he got shot and Double Fantasy did well.

Kurt Cobain was a talented musician who just did not have the intellectual spark to break away from boring rocknroll conventions.

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Cobain was a mediocre guitar player with some song writing talent. If Kurt Loder hadn't been desperate for a dead rock star to flog he'd probabaly be little remembered.

McCartney is a legend, but lately he seems to be popping up on TV every five minutes and I'm getting tired of it.

Didn't Springsteen already do a Sandy benefit?

ambienisevil said...
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Mutaman said...

Why doesn't Shouting Thomas just post "I have no friggin taste in music" and get it over with?

Blue@9 said...

Lennon was such a dumb shit. He was determined to tape a giant "Please Kill Me" sign on his ass! He seemed unable to understand that he was just a popular musician, and not some fucking world saver philosopher.

The hell are you talking about? Lennon largely retreated from popular view. Yeah, he sang anti-war songs, but people keep trying to pin him as some great Leftists majaraja. He wasn't. Some biographers have suggested that he was pretty conservative in his political beliefs.

And yes, Nirvana was great. They borrowed some from the Beatles, some from the Pixies, and some from the NW grunge movement forming around them. Cobain was a shitty musician, but a very good songwriter.

Robert Cook said...

Nirvana had a few good tunes, but they were boring over the long haul. I saw them on their last tour when they came to NYC a few months before Cobain's suicide. I wouldn't have gone but a friend had extra tickets and invited. They were just tedious.

I've never cared for Springsteen, going to back to when I first heard him in 1975. I don't like his voice and I don't like the brassy, tawdry, overblown sound of his band and arrangements. Not to my taste, at all. The best Springsteen songs I've heard were those performed by others.

gabylan said...

he is the best!
http://www.freehotmusic.org/index.php/en/jokes/37-graphicals-jokes/97-dave-grohl-the-charismatic-his-most-funny-moments