Green Room

Nirvana’s new front man: Paul McCartney, of course

posted at 8:25 pm on December 12, 2012 by

For one night only, but still.

It bugs me that people have been snarking about this all day on Twitter. Why shouldn’t McCartney step in for Cobain? He’s one of the band’s granddaddies. Scan Cobain’s list of his 50 favorite albums and there, amid punk classics famous and obscure, you’ll find “Meet the Beatles.” In fact, that album inspired one of his most memorable songs:

According to the 1994 Nirvana biography Come as You Are: The Story of Nirvana by Michael Azerrad, “About a Girl” was written after Kurt Cobain spent an entire afternoon listening to Meet The Beatles! repeatedly. At the time, Cobain was trying to conceal his pop songwriting instincts, and he was reluctant to include the song on Bleach for fear of alienating the band’s then-exclusively grunge fan base.

Cobain himself once famously copped to his pop tendencies by describing Nirvana as Cheap Trick with louder guitars. If Grohl could have gotten John Lennon tonight instead, presumably he would have; as it is, performing with arguably the most influential pop songwriter alive seems okay as a consolation prize. (This isn’t the first time Grohl has worked with a classic-rock legend, either.) In fact, I bet he’s secretly enjoying the mindfark of having a guy whose career for the past 40 years has been defined by stuff like “Silly Love Songs” fronting for a band defined by “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” If punk is about defying conventions, well, there you go.

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