The Only Album Kurt Cobain Produced
Late Nirvana singer Kurt Cobain‘s influence on the entire music industry is undoubtfully immense. His anger toward society’s standards and anti-establishment view on life made him one of the most inspiring figures in rock music. His early death upset many people, but his life left a huge mark, and his talents are everlastingly remembered.
Cobain’s songwriting skills carried his band to the top, and they quickly became a representative of generation X and mainstream rock. The singer’s lyrics, musical talents, and personality made him an icon and showed that his skills don’t have an end. However, he once attempted producing an album for his contemporary band, including his friends at the time, but that didn’t end well.
Which Album Did Kurt Cobain Produce?
Formed in 1983, Melvins made it to the grunge scene slowly by first establishing itself as a cover band for Jimi Hendrix. Later in 1986, the band created the album ‘Melvins’ and made their debut. Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain and Melvin’s frontman Buzz Osborne were friends, and the band decided to hire Cobain as the producer of their seventh album, ‘Houdini.’
The record was Melvins’ first album with Atlantic Records, so there was pressure for it to be good. Eventually, the album was released in 1993, but the recording process was not very smooth, and the reason was Cobain’s state as a producer. Hence, the band fired Cobain from the record.
Why Did Melvins Fire Kurt Cobain?
According to Melvins’ collaborator Jonathan Burnside, Cobain was a difficult person to handle at the time. He didn’t have proper communication, and the entire making of the album was very ‘evil.’ Buzz Osborne also commented on the creation process.
After doing many sessions with Cobain, he stated that he went out of control. The singer was getting out of hand because he was guided by drug abuse, and eventually, the band had to fire him. This album became like a horror story that the band didn’t want to talk about because the creation process was ‘tragic.’
In the book ‘The Oral History of Nirvana,’ Jonathan Burnside said:
“It’s not easy reminiscing about making the album Houdini with Kurt Cobain and the Melvins. Bad communication, drugs, major label profiteering, rehab, schedule blowouts, backstabbing, and album miscrediting. It was a devil’s album.”
Here is what Buzz Osborne told Kerrang in 2008:
“We did a bunch of sessions with Kurt Cobain producing, but it got to the point where he was so out of control that we basically fired him and went our separate ways, which is unfortunate because I think that would have been fun. Obviously, that was a little snapshot of what would end up happening, and I don’t have a whole lot of fond memories of that; it was an absolute tragedy.”
Buzz Osborne also talked about Cobain in 2021 on Classic Rock and stated:
“He was a mess, drug-wise.”
Nirvana frontman was still given credits on the Melvins’ creations, including six tracks. ‘Houdini’ is known to be the only album that signs Cobain as a producer and gives him the title. It’s a shame that the process was complicated for the band, but they didn’t refrain the singer from the credits.