Shinedown’s Brent Smith Puts Courtney Love On His Mount Rushmore Of Grunge

During a recent appearance on the Tuna On Toast with Stryker podcast, Shinedown’s Brent Smith included Courtney Love on his personal Mount Rushmore of grunge, alongside other figures of the ’90s rock scene.

The vocalist said the following about Love’s impact on the grunge movement:

“Courtney Love, everybody has an issue with Courtney, though. Man, I go back and listen… I look at that stuff, and I’m just like, those two first Hole albums are nuts.”

The ’90s Influence On The Singer

In the earlier part of his conversation, Smith reflected on his teenage years in the ’90s, a period he considers one of the most incredible times in music, noting:

“I’m very, very lucky. I was a teenager during the ’90s. And so from like 1991 to 1998, that was like my high school. Probably one of the most incredible times in music.”

The Influential Figures Of Grunge

Smith didn’t stop with Love, as he also paid homage to other giants of the era:

“Chris [Cornell] is definitely, Chris is at the top. I remember being with [record producer] Michael Beinhorn. Dude, I would not shut up about ‘Superunknown’ and Soundgarden. Because he produced that record. I was just going on and on and on about it. Because that record and Chris Cornell completely changed my life.”

Kurt Cobain of Nirvana and Layne Staley of Alice in Chains were also mentioned as pivotal to Brent’s musical upbringing. He disclosed:

“Kurt Cobain. He’s definitely in there.”

At first, Smith thought about including Kim Gordon from Sonic Youth as his final choice, but he felt Courtney had a bigger influence on him. He said:

“I was a huge, huge fan of her and that band.”

Love’s Slow And Steady Return

Courtney Love’s latest studio effort with Hole, ‘Nobody’s Daughter,’ was released in 2010. Despite facing challenges, Love confirmed in 2020 that she was working on new material, described as ‘really sad’ and written in minor chords. In January 2023, Courtney hinted at a slow and deliberate approach to her upcoming album, explaining:

“In the case of this album, it’s like slow cooking. Slow food. Slow down. Only say what you need to desperately say. When the spirit moves me to sing it – not because capitalist realism, flawed as it is, expects career artists to just shit out genius nuggets – there’s only been one Beatles! I know a dude (a few) on that habit trail; eat the world 18 or so albums in; he’s got 3 (?) songs with. Good compositions.”

In October 2023, Love ended her social media hiatus with a series of TikTok videos, teasing new music and expressing her intention to avoid the pressure of rapid album releases. She aims for her next project to be her best work yet, free from the constraints of industry expectations and focused on genuine artistic expression.

You can watch his full interview below.