Skip to content

Kurt Cobain Offers His Thoughts on Rap Music in Unreleased 1991 Interview

A lost Kurt Cobain radio interview has been unearthed and posted in its uncut form to the Bandcamp of the Ontarian band Dead City Beat. It was recorded in Toronto while Nirvana was on tour there. Roberto LoRusso, the leader of DCB, was responsible for the interview—he was 21 at the time—and includes vociferous apologies for his somewhat demented line of questioning in the Bandcamp description. Indeed, the interview is very, very bad. It took place on Sept. 20, 1991, during Nevermind‘s release week, so we’ve elected to post it.

For an awkward meta-flourish, the interview asked Cobain to discuss why he hates interviews, after forcing him to record a station I.D. “I’m getting really bored with the same questions all the time,” Cobain explained. “It’s understandable. I also realize that most of the interviewers have to just ask the standard questions because we don’t have much of an image and there’s not much story behind our band. So what people can grasp, they base their interview off of that.” He also expresses annoyance at people harping on Nirvana’s decision to go from an indie to a major label.

Cobain also disputes the figure of their “three quarters of a million” dollar contract that the interviewer believed the band got for signing. Cobain explains that they only got $175,000, most of which went to other people, and explains that he had recently been evicted from his apartment and currently didn’t have a place to live.

He responded to a question about alleged quote of his from another interview, in which he claimed white people shouldn’t rap because “the white man has ripped off the black man long enough,” and wondered if he had been drunk at the time. “I’m a fan of rap music but most of it is so misogynist that I can’t even deal with it,” Cobain explained. “I’m really not that much of a fan. I totally respect and love it because it’s one of the only original forms of music that’s been introduced. But the white man doing rap is just like watching a white man dance. We can’t dance, we can’t rap.” When the interviewer claims he actually got the rare white-guy dancing gene, Cobain quipped: “Great, you’ve had your kneecaps removed at birth.”