The potential that died with Kurt Cobain in April 1994 is in sharp focus once again with the dramatic revelation that the Nirvana singer/songwriter had been working on a solo record, and had even cut some demos, at the time of his passing. This according to former Hole guitarist Eric Erlandson, who has been doing the press rounds promoting his just-released book of poetry and essays, Letters to Kurt.
In an interview with Fuse, Erlandson says Cobain, “was headed in a direction that was really cool. It would have been his White Album,” referring to the Beatles' self-titled classic.
He adds, “That’s really what he was going towards, a solo album but working with different people. I was really excited about some of the stuff he was working on. I got to see him play it in front of me.
"That’s why I was really sad [when he died]. I was like, ‘Oh man, not only are you cutting off a life, but a message to the world. Who knows where the music would have gone.”
In the interview, it’s not clear why Erlandson knows this information but no one else – Cobain’s former band mates, friends, producers, the “different people” he was working with etc – has made the solo record claim. Erlandson also reveals that a demo of Cobain performing a cover of a well-known song exists, but he wouldn’t confess which song it was, exactly. Grrr.
“There is one cover… I won’t say what it is. I don't own the stuff,” explains Erlandson. “I just hope that one day it will be released for fans. It’s just so heartbreaking.”
Well, if that disclosure doesn’t get Cobain and Nirvana fans whipped into a lather, I don’t know what will. Fuse reports that there are currently no plans for the release of the Cobain demos (assuming they exist and haven’t been lost, destroyed or otherwise mislaid) but if they are somewhere it’s really only a matter of time before they surface. Wow.