WEIRDLAND: 'Damage & Joy,' Kurt Cobain, Jim Morrison

Thursday, March 30, 2017

'Damage & Joy,' Kurt Cobain, Jim Morrison

The Jesus & Mary Chain have addressed a lyric from their new album that includes the line: “I killed Kurt Cobain/I put the shot right through his brain”. The Scottish shoegaze veterans are currently gearing up to release their first album in 18 years with ‘Damage & Joy.‘ The album’s twelfth track ‘Simian Split’ includes the Cobain lyric, with Pitchfork asking the band’s Jim Reid if it was a call-back to their 1992 song ‘Reverence’ in which he sings: “I wanna die just like JFK”. Reid explained: “It’s fiction. It’s total fiction. It’s not meant to be taken too seriously. It’s just a work of fiction, and people shouldn’t get too het up about it.” Meanwhile, Reid recently spoke to NME about the state of modern guitar music. He argued that in the time that the group has been away, rock and guitar music has seen a sharp decline. “There’s not much of guitar music left at the moment, I don’t hear many guitar bands out there,” the frontman told NME. “It’s kinda pushed underground, guitar music seems to be limping at the moment.” Source:

The 1990’s was a great decade to grow up in. Music was a huge pivot point for society, with the 80s punk movement morphing into grunge. Grunge became the voice for the ’90s young people, bringing socially conscious issues into popular culture. One of the biggest bands of the era was Nirvana. Kurt Cobain was what many would call a tortured soul. He was unusually negatively affected by his fame and popularity as lead guitarist and vocalist of Nirvana. Often hailed as “the spokesman of Generation X”, Cobain was uncomfortable with the label as he believed his message and vision was misinterpreted. Nirvana has sold over 25 million albums in the US alone, and over 75 million globally. However, this massive success had profound effects on Cobain, who struggled to reconcile it with his underground roots. The frontman developed a resentment toward people who claimed to be fans of the band and yet misinterpreted, or refused to acknowledge, the core social and political views of Nirvana. Source:

It could be argued that without Jim Morrison you don’t get Iggy Pop, Patti Smith, or going down another line, Kurt Cobain. I can’t say I agree with Lester Bangs’ quaint notion that there ain’t NO SALVATION without rock and roll, and I’d bet Jim Morrison didn’t either. I couldn’t really tell you whether rock & roll has ever needed anything as ridiculous as a king, or if kings especially need rock and roll, but if there ever was an approximate, I would hafto insist on Jimbo as the goddamn King of Rock and Roll.  ―"Best Goddamn L.A. King: Jim Morrison" (2003) by Richard Meltzer

Jim Morrison: "A bad photograph can give you several moments of real psychic loss. You trade in your reality for a role. You give up your ability to feel, and in exchange, put on a mask. Love hurts. Feelings are disturbing. People seek tyrants. They worship and support them. They co-operate with restrictions and rules, and they become enchanted with the violence involved in their brief, token rebellion. They love their chains. They forget all about who they really are. And if you try to remind them, they hate you for it, they feel like you're trying to steal their most precious possession. The LA cops are almost fanatical in believing the rightfulness of their cause. They have a whole philosophy behind their tyranny. Religion is like philosophy, what you devote most of your time to. It might be a woman. It might be money. It might be literature. I think religion is what you think about the most. Philosophy doesn't interest me as much as it used to. I finally was forced to realize that no one in the world really knows about what's going on. Poetry is the ultimate art form, because what defines us as human beings is language. And so I appreciate philosophy these days from the standpoint of poetry, the use of one word next to another word next to another word. So, philosophy is semantics, I guess."

Frank Lisciandro: Jim Morrison was an alcoholic, but not a 'drug addict'. He might have used LSD, and even abused it, but he used it to search for something, not to escape. He lived his life with a calm, unhurried simplicity. He read novels, pulp fiction, scientific journals, history, philosophy, psychology. Alcoholics suffer from their disease. Do we say that people who have cancer or heart disease destroy themselves? No! We acknowledge that the disease destroys them. The myth of the tortured artist is a literary conceit. I don't know how Jim died, but I think that his death must have been an careless accident. Or the culmination of a life of alcoholism. 

-I'm not especially fond of Ray Manzarek, but he had a point when he told Rolling Stone magazine: "we can't let the fascists joke about the Sixties and the counter culture." Too much was at stake. My generation, Jim's generation, we stopped a war, but we took casualties. He fled to avoid being another one. I can understand that. Mike Jahn in "Jim Morrison & The Doors"  (1969)

-Frank Lisciandro: Jim dedicated his books of poetry to Pamela who was his companion, lover, muse and friend. She encouraged him to write and publish his poems, and in many ways she was the most important figure in his life. Pamela was beautiful, intelligent, creative and as wild and willful as Jim was. They made a perfect pair. I think they loved each other as only very strong hearts can love. I can say that when Jim talked about her, it was always in praise of her. Jim was very supportive of her. There was a consistency to their relationship that far, far transcended any other relationship that Jim had with any other woman. Jim’s appreciation of the Living Theater led to his over-the-top behavior in Miami. Another possible contributing factor was an argument. Jim and Pam were going to Jamaica right after the Miami concert, but, at the last minute, they had an argument and Pam decided not to go, and Jim missed his airplane to Miami. Then, in order to get to Miami close to the starting time of the concert, he had to take a series of connecting flights. And he was drinking the whole way there.

“Jim was a humanist because he accepted people and believed that all human beings deserved to be treated with dignity. He was a direct, no bullshit dude and hated being lied to, conned or exploited. By the time he left for Paris in March of 1971, the friends he could depend on numbered less than ten. Jim was a performer and he would get up on stage and weave a spell for you. I didn’t see him as that leather-clad heartthrob icon that other people did. Jim was more Rimbaud than Mick Jagger. He was just a tremendously likeable person to be around.” Source:

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