Archive for November, 2015

soakedinbleachMy Thoughts: I remember exactly what I was doing when I heard the news. I was sitting in my living room arranging my cd’s in my case, and the breaking news came on MTV “Kurt Cobain, the lead singer of Nirvana was found dead of an apparent suicide in his home in Seattle.”

What Nirvana meant to me. I’d love to say that for me Nirvana meant a break, a rebellion against the formatted music that was the 1980’s. That wasn’t the case. I liked them because they tore shit up and were loud. It has been said that Cobain spoke to a generation through his lyrics. Not for me. Sure I like his lyrics, but they didn’t mean shit to me. I loved the guitar riffs, the screaming, the pounding of the drums, and a bass riffs. In fact, it wasn’t until his death and reading the numerous books that I learned half of the lyrics of the songs (especially Nevermind), and still laugh my ass off when people play so much into his lyrics, when, according to Cobain himself, he wrote most of the songs on his way to the recording studio. No deep messages. No hidden codes. No generational call to arms. Just a dude who could write and put words to music and did so minutes before heading into record songs.

No, Cobain was not some guru in my life, but I loved his music and his death hit hard. It’s the same feeling I had when Brad Nowell of Sublime died. It really wasn’t the loss of the singer that hit, what hit hard was knowing the music died with them. In the years since Cobain and Nowell’s death albums have been released of their cut tracks, songs that never made it to albums, live sets, etc. But in those there is something missing. In those cut tracks and recording room floor releases, you can hear where they were in terms of their music when they were recorded, and you know that they had progressed passed that on the last albums they released. The sense of loss is the reality that you’ll never get the chance to see where they could have gone and what would have become of them and their bands. Break-up like the Beatles? Reunion tours like the Stones? Continuation of the music for the deep thinker crowd like Pearl Jam? Continuous tours like the Grateful Dead? Or remaining relevant by reinventing themselves like Green Day or Red Hot Chili Peppers?

Like most people of my generation, the news I received and paid attention to back in the day came from MTV. And like most, the reports I got about Cobain’s death came from Kurt Loder. And through the death and morning, I learned what I could from a singular source. Like most, the question I had was why? Why would someone with so much kill themselves? It never made since to me. Fuck man, if you’re tired of making music quit. You wouldn’t be the first or the last person who would have done that. Yet, as the replayed recording of Courtney reading the suicide note, that was it, that was the reason. He wanted to go out on top rather than fade away.

The narrative was established and love moved on. Other bands tried to capitalize on the whole Grunge scene, but it never really worked, and so the power that be did away with the word “Grunge” and replaced it with “Alternative.” I like everyone else moved on. Oh sure, there were the anniversaries that came with the release of new albums and box sets, and yes I bought them all. However, there was a certain sadness in all of it. Not the mourning the loss kind of sadness, but a sadness of realizing there were people milking the fuck out of this dudes death as much as they could, and I was buying into it all.

I will admit, for the longest time I followed the conspiracy theories surrounding Cobain’s death. I read a couple of books about his life, and some that dealt with the possibility of his death being murder, and for a while there I was fixated on it. Then I just moved on. Why? Not a big fan of conspiracy theories in the first place because I see people who get some deep bat shit crazy into them and just have better things to do with my time.

And then I watched “Soaked in Bleach” on Netflix last night, and I can honestly say I am more convinced than ever that Kurt Cobain’s death was not as cut and dry as it was portrayed in the media and history, and that Courtney Love knew more about his death, even going so far as to say she had something to do with it. If you have not watched it, are a fan of Nirvana, you have to watch it and decide for yourself if there is a there there.

The film centers around Tom Grant, a former LAPD detective turned private investigator hired by Courtney Love days before Cobain’s death, to find him. Early on in his investigation he began to  feel something wasn’t right and began recording everything: His discussions with Courtney, his talks with those close to Kurt, the Cobain’s lawyer, etc. And, when you listen to the tapes, and watch the film you start to see a pattern emerge…the intention wasn’t finding Cobain, but to create the idea that the search was on…knowing full well the search was over before it began. So I will break down the key point that convinced me that the case needs to be reopened and Courtney Love should be investigated.

  1. The amount of heroin found in Cobain’s body at the time of death. 3 times the amount that would be lethal to a heavy user. Why is that important? According to the suicide theory Kurt injected himself with 3 times the amount of Heroin to kill a normal man, then was able to coordinate a shotgun and kill himself? Every person interviewed on this agreed with one thing…it couldn’t be done. In 1997 a documentary was released, “Kurt and Courtney” that proved it could. Someone with the same amount of “heroin” as Cobain was shown to be able to stand on one foot. Problem: They weren’t on heroin, they were on methadone, which is ingested and not shot up.
  2. The investigators report that Cobain was “barricaded” in the room where he killed himself. However the EMT first responder to the scene refutes that claim and states that there was NO obstruction to the room. Even the crime scene photos prove that. Furthermore the investigation states that the door was locked from the inside and no once could have entered the room. But it was a twist lock, easily locked by anyone leaving the room.
  3. The story of his suicide was supported by his “attempted” suicide in Rome. However, the stories after the incident in Rome where not about suicide, but an accident. The doctor who treated Cobain flat out denied that it was a suicide attempt. The narrative changed from accident to suicide attempt the day after Cobain was found dead. Who was the first to say that? Courtney. Even more damning is this: Two days before the “incident” in Rome Cobain contacted his lawyer Rosemary Carroll and told her to remove Courtney from his will and that he wanted to discuss “divorce” when he returned to LA. Two days later her is rushed to the hospital after ingesting wine and a muscle relaxer Rohypnol . It was reported that the muscle relaxer was something Cobain was using for his “continuing” stomach problems (another reason for his suicide), but in a Rolling Stone interview prior to leaving on the European tour, Cobain said that the stomach issues had been taken care of and had not had any issues “For over a year.”
  4. Dylan Carlson. He was supposedly a “close friend of Kurt’s and was working with Grant while looking for Cobain in Seattle. Dylan was the one who registered the shotgun for Cobain “after a break-in.” Dylan, and every single one of Cobain’s close friends, repeatedly said Kurt was not suicidal, never mentioned being depressed or suicidal, was stoked about working with  R.E.M lead singer Michael Stipe, and mentioned divorce. Dylan was a heroin addict, got his drugs through Kurt’s Seattle dealer, and sponged off Kurt and Courtney. Courtney refused to talk to Grant while he was in Seattle and would only go through Dylan. The night before Cobain was found dead, Grant and Dylan entered the home looking for Kurt and the shotgun. They did not find either, and left. However, they searched the whole house except one area…the Greenhouse. The Greenhouse, according to medical records, where Kurt Cobain was. Grant and Dylan are following a lead the next day. Dylan makes a call and hears about Cobain’s body being found. He tells Grant, “They found Kurt’s body at the house in the greenhouse.” Grant was livid and questioned why Dylan never mentioned the greenhouse while they were at the house, and Dylan says, “Courtney told me not to take you up there.” (All of this recorded by Grant)
  5. Courtney, days after the death, claims she found a second letter from Kurt. She claims the note was found in their Seattle bed, under the pillows. However, Grant calls her out on this. Why? Because the night before Cobain was found, Grant was in the home, in that room, and over turned that very bed, pillows and all, looking for the shotgun. No gun was found, no letter was there, but pills were…Rohypnol, the same muscle relaxers that Kurt OD’d on in Rome.
  6. Michael “Cali” Dewitt. Who was he? He was a live in male nanny for Kurt and Courtney. He lived in the Seattle home. Had formerly dated Courtney, and was in Rome when Cobain had his “incident.” When Grant entered the Cobain home the night before, he found a note, written by Cali, placed on the stairs of the home. The note is a “plea” for Kurt to call Courtney and let her know he was ok. Grant and Rosemary Carroll both question the validity of the note. Cali could not be found in Seattle. Grant repeatedly requested from Courtney to put him in contact with Cali. She refused at first, then said she would try, but never followed through with it. Cali turns up in LA with Courtney the day before Cobain is found dead.
  7. The shotgun shell. A spent shell is found to the left of Kurt’s body, but the way the gun was positioned it should have ejected to the left. Investigators suggest the gun spun in Cobain’s hand after he pulled the trigger explaining where the shell wound up. Problem: Cobain had what is known as a “death grip” on the barrel of the gun. There was no way the gun could have “flipped” because of the grip.
  8. It was reported by MTV and the press that Kurt’s mother had filed a missing person report. However, that was not true. In fact, it was Courtney who filed the report and used his mother’s name. She hoped that by using his mother’s name Kurt “would contact us.”
  9. It was reported by MTV and the press that Cobain had taken his license out of his wallet so the police could identify his body. Not true. The police found the wallet, pulled out the ID, placed it on the wallet for photos. In fact, according to the EMT first responder, there was no problem identifying who the body belonged to, which “fascinated” him because, unlike most shotgun wounds that tear away the skull and face, this was not the case with Kurt.
  10. The investigation. Grant and Dylan show up to the house as the police are inside. Grant asks to speak to the lead investigator because he had been in the house the night before. Instead of speaking to someone who had been inside the home like any cop would, he told him, “he didn’t have time to speak to him and he could call him after 3pm that day.” When Grant confronted the lead investigator with questions about the “barricade” lie and Courtney’s recordings, the investigator became non responsive and told him the investigation was closed. That same detective resigned 3 months later rather than being fired for wrongful investigation practices. 3 more important facts: The crime scene photos were never processed or developed, the coroner’s report has never been made public, and even the Chief of Police for Seattle during the time of Cobain’s death says the case “Needs to be reopened.”
  11. The suicide note. The only indication that the note is a suicide note are the last lines of the note. When Courtney visited Rosemary Carroll, she left a backpack. Inside was piece of paper with a bunch of letters scribbled on it. According to forensic investigators, the letters on that page match almost 100% to those on the suicide note…not the body of it, but the last lines of the note. According to the same forensic investigator the lines prior to the “end” lines are vastly different in tone and writing, the last lines are hastily written and don’t “fit the tone” of the body of the letter.
  12. Kristen Pfaff. Who is she? She was the bassist for Courtney Love’s band “Hole.” By all accounts, she and Cobain were also close, maybe going so far as having an affair. When Love hired Grant, one of the first things she said was that she was “sure” he was Pfaff. Two months after Cobain’s death, June 1994, Pfaff informed Love that she was leaving Hole and returning to her Minneapolis band Janitor Joe. She returned to Seattle to gather the rest of her things, had a packed Uhaul, and was leaving in the morning. She didn’t leave. Instead she was found in her locked bathroom dead of an apparent heroin overdose. The amount and circumstance of her death were eerily similar to those of Cobain. Problem: In February of 1994 Pfaff entered detox and had been clean. Her break with Hole was a “break of the lifestyle and the drug use.” So this woman, who, by every account of friends, family, and new bandmates,  was celebrating her sobriety returned to Seattle for two days, decided to inject herself with a double shot of heroin?
  13. Even the biggest skeptics who have in the past called Tom Grant a “Conspiracy Theorist” have changed their tune. Why? Because Grant has made his thousands of hours of recordings available to all who wish to listen to them. Grant created a webpage for any other skeptics who wish to hear the tapes and read his investigation notes and his case that Kurt Cobain was murdered and did not commit suicide. www.cobaincase.com

You can decide for yourself where you stand after watching the documentary, but personally, I finished believing that the death of Kurt Cobain was not a cut a dry suicide case. I have no idea if Courtney Love was involved, but I will say I believe she was. I have no idea how it was done, but that is not for me to figure out. That is the job of the Seattle police department, and hopefully with this Documentary and new evidence, the case will be reopened.

The obvious question is why? Why bring all this up again? Personally I want to know. I want a “conspiracy theory” to finally be put to rest once and for all. Pure and simple. I want to know for sure it was 100% a suicide or if it was murder. The only way for this to happen is for 1. The corner report should be released. The crime scene photos should be developed and released. 3. The Tom Grant tapes should be investigated by Seattle police with a focus on the Dylan, Carroll, and Love tapes. 4. The Seattle Police Department reopens the case and does all of the above things and come to a final conclusion. End the theories once and for all or indict those responsible. Pure and simple.


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So Long Facebook

Today I decided to go ahead and end my very long relationship with Facebook. I left it open for a return, but honestly I am hoping I can avoid it and sooner or later it, like Myspace, will fade into a distant memory for me.

For the past few years I have used Facebook to express my Thought and Rants so that I could vent on things both good and bad. I’ve had a lot of people express how much they liked them, and maybe, if I get around to it, I will go through my Facebook page and copy and paste some of the better ones to this. I’ve also had people leave comments of displeasure or message me their discontent with my posts.

A long time ago my passion was writing. In high school I had these train of thoughts that I put to paper and titled them “Trips.” They were observations and thoughts that I had about a bunch of different things in my life at the time. I guess my Thoughts and Rants were an exstention of those early writings. However, I also wrote A LOT of short stories, and during and after the Navy my writings got longer and longer…reaching novel status. I took Creative Writing and Poetry classes in college and was actually the treasurer of the UNC Poetry Club for a year.

However, once I started my major (history) my writing began to focus in on history research papers and somewhere along the line I stopped writing for fun. I was ok with because the writing I was doing was getting me damn good grades and got me through my Master’s Degree.

Lately though I have had an urge to return to the fun writing and maybe actually do something with it. I have been writing since I was 12 yrs. old and not once have I really tried to get anything published. Writing for me was a way to escape and allow my imagination go, the thought of making money of it might have crossed my mind, but I never really made in efforts in doing so. Now though, I am having that itch. Why? I think it has to do with my age. I’m getting older and the years left on this blue marble are getting shorter and shorter by the moment. That realization has made me question that if I do have a talent, via God or whatever, and I spend my whole life with boxes and flash drives filled with stories, will I pass with regret for not trying? My answer to that recently has been yes.

The one positive of failure is trying. So I asked myself today and I expressing my thoughts and ideas on the wrong forum when I should be focusing on a different route. My writing over the past couple of years, these Thoughts and Rants, have been born out of frustration and discontent. Frustration with where society has gone in the past 14 years. Discontent with where our nation has gone over the past 14 years (especially the past seven). Maybe that is telling me that I should consider political writing and musings, but the problem with that is that is not were my passion lies nor is it viable for me. Yes I am a history and political junkie, but at the same time, my imagination is way my expansive than limiting myself to a fucked up social issue or douche bag political hack.

I have been thinking about this since my Aunt Karen passed away. She was always supportive of my writing and spent years trying to get me to step up and attempt to get it published. On the flight home after her death, I thought about those conversations and recently they have come back two fold. So I made a decision today, end the side show and hit towards Broadway. So I gave up Facebook, and without that conduit, maybe now I can focus my attentions on where they need to be. We’ll see.

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