Dave Grohl has revealed that a flawed report on Kurt Cobain’s death left him unable to process the death of the Nirvana leader when it occurred a month later.
In March 1994, Cobain was rushed to hospital in Italy after an alcohol and drug overdose. He spent five days under medical care before being released, but upon admission it was falsely reported that he had died. He committed suicide about five weeks later.
In his new memories The storyteller: Tales of life and music (via the New York Post), Grohl revealed that he took a call home, in which he was told Cobain was dead. “My knees gave out and I dropped the phone as I fell to my bedroom floor, covering my face with my hands as I started to cry,” he wrote. “He was gone. The shy young man who gave me an apple at our first presentation at the Seattle airport was gone. My calm, introverted roommate with whom I had shared a tiny apartment in Olympia was gone. The loving father who performed with his beautiful baby daughter backstage every night before each show started I was overcome with a sadness deeper than I had ever imagined.
A few minutes later, Grohl received another call saying that Cobain had survived and remembered feeling like he was ‘born again’. But as a result of the experience, he added, “I built my walls higher” as protection against emotional extremes. This act tragically backfired when he was told a little over a month later that Cobain was truly dead. “This time it was for real. He was gone, ”Grohl said. “There was no second phone call to right the wrong. To reverse the tragedy. It was final.
He said his grief was “stuck somewhere deep inside me, blocked by the trauma of a month before, when I had been left in a state of conflicted emotional confusion. … ‘Empathy !’ Kurt wrote in his suicide note, and there were times I begged my heart to feel the pain it must have felt. Ask for it to break. I tried to tear the tears out of my eyes as I cursed those fucking walls I had built so high, because they kept me from feelings that I desperately needed to have.
In modern times, he added, it is the impact of the first call that has touched him the most. “To this day, I am often overwhelmed by that same deep sadness that sent me to the ground the first time I was told that Kurt was dead,” he said. “But it’s when I sit in front of a drum set that I feel Kurt the most,” Grohl continued, admitting that he thinks about his late bandmate every day. “It’s not often that I play the songs we’ve played together, but when I sit on that stool I can still imagine him in front of me, wrestling with his guitar as he screamed at the top of his lungs into the microphone. .
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