This interview of Kurt Cobain is originally an interview on cassette tape by Jon Savage on 22 July 1993 in New York. It is presented as a five minutes audio conversation with animation and transcription, under the heading “Kurt Cobain on Identity”. The tone of the interview is in some way between professional and personal, as Jon Savage is a professional music journalist (Unterberger n.d.), but also has knowledge on Kurt Cobain’s personal life.
Instead of focusing on Cobain’s music, the questions asked in the interview centre on Cobain’s past and his thoughts on himself. However, the interview helps the audience to understand both Cobain and his music more that Cobain’s answers on himself often reflect the characters of his music. For example, Cobain talks about his social and political anger, which is expressed through his singing. Also, by saying “I’m always in pain, too, and that really adds to the anger in our music” (Cobain 1993), the artist again points out the link of his personal feelings to Nirvana’s music.
Furthermore, Savage does not follow a set agenda of questions in the interview, yet lets the questions flow with the answers. He also allows much space for the interviewee to answer that Cobain is talking most of the time during this interview.
The aim of this interview is to learn more about Cobain’s view on his identity, which it achieves successfully. Even the main goal of this interview is not about understanding Nirvana’s music; I definitely gain a better perspective on how the artist’s life shapes his music and what to look for in the music. In general, it is an effective clip of interview of Kurt Cobain.
Cobain, Kurt, interview by Jon Savage. Kurt Cobain on Identity (1993).
Unterberger, Richie. Jon Savage. http://www.allmusic.com/artist/jon-savage-mn0002295208 (accessed 2017).