The Reason Nirvana Refused To Be Ozzy Osbourne’s Opening Act


Pretty much every new band would dream of touring with a much experienced and successful artist at the beginning of their music career. This is the reason why fans hear countless legendary bands of today that were once the opening acts for other musicians.

Since a much bigger artist brings popularity to a new band in most cases, there aren’t many bands who would turn down an offer that can increase their success, especially if that artist is no other than Black Sabbath icon Ozzy Osbourne.

However, this opportunity many would jump on was turned down by the grunge icons Nirvana in spite of their admiration for the Prince of Darkness. Let’s break down their relationship as well as the reason why they refused a chance that comes once in a lifetime together.

The Relationship Between Ozzy Osbourne And Nirvana


Although this duo isn’t frequently mentioned together, both Nirvana and Ozzy Osbourne previously revealed their opinions on each other during interviews. In fact, Osbourne stated in an interview with Launch Radio Networks back in 2007 that Nirvana is one of his favorite hard rock bands as well as recalling the time Dave Grohl reminded him of the time they met.

As Blabbermouth reported, Osbourne said:

“Apparently, I met Kurt Cobain, ’cause I was talking to Dave Grohl and he said, ‘You probably don’t remember this, but when you were in Devonshire Studios in the San Fernando Valley, me and Kurt were in the room where they had a pool table. When you walked in we were like, ‘F***ing hell.'”

In addition to this, the Prince of Darkness opened up about Kurt Cobain in his 2009 memoir, ‘I Am Ozzy.’ According to the rocker, Nirvana’s hit song ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ had a huge impact on him. Since he’s a fan of the band, Ozzy felt flattered when he found out that Cobain was a fan of his.

In his biography ‘I Am Ozzy,’ Ozzy penned:

“It had a huge impact on me, ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit,’ and I was very proud when I found out that Kurt Cobain was a fan of mine. I thought he was awesome.”

Speaking of Cobain, he was indeed a fan of Ozzy Osbourne who influenced the early works of the Nirvana singer, especially their debut record, ‘Bleach.’ According to his former bandmate Dave Grohl, Cobain was moved by Black Sabbath’s music since he felt related to its sound.

Nirvana Turned Ozzy Osbourne Down


Apparently, being a fan of Ozzy Osbourne wasn’t enough to say yes to the Black Sabbath icon when he offered Nirvana to be his opening act. During an interview, Kurt Cobain opened up about Osbourne and recalled the time he asked Nirvana to go on tour with him.

While there aren’t many bands who would turn down an offer coming from Ozzy Osbourne himself, Nirvana actually refused to be the opening act for the rocker. The reason behind their decision was based on Kurt Cobain’s vision for his music which wasn’t to play for masses to gain wider recognition.

According to Rock and Roll Garage, Kurt Cobain said:

“He also asked us to go on tour with him, but we turned it down. It would have been fun and kind of exciting to be part of his last shows, but we don’t really wanna play in huge arenas supporting someone.”

Because he appreciated Ozzy Osbourne and Black Sabbath, Cobain didn’t forget to mention that touring with him would have been fun and exciting. It’s disappointing that the idea itself didn’t exactly go well together with Cobain’s vision for Nirvana since it sounds like a match made in heaven.