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Kurt Cobain wrote this for his girlfriend at the time, Tracy Marander. They lived together for a while, and he took the photo that's on the album cover.
According to Chad Channing, who was Nirvana's drummer at the time, Cobain didn't have a title for this song when he brought it to the studio. Chad told us
: "I remember we were rehearsing the song not long before we went in and recorded the record, Bleach
. Kurt was just playing the song and we were working it out. I asked Kurt what the song was, and Kurt was like, 'Well, I don't really know.' And then I said, 'Well, what's it about?' And he says, 'It's about a girl.' And I said, 'Well, why don't you just call it 'About A Girl'?' And he just kind of looked at me and smiled and said, 'Okay.' We went with that."
Channing adds that this is one of the songs that really impressed him about Cobain's songwriting. "It's kind of heavy, but it's got a total pop sensibility," he said. "I always thought he was a great songwriter."
This was one of Nirvana's first songs. It was released on Sub Pop, an independent record label they recorded on before being signed by David Geffen's DGC Records.
Kurt Cobain wrote this after spending the previous night listening to The Beatles first US album, Meet The Beatles, over and over.
This is the first track on Nirvana's acoustic album MTV Unplugged In New York, which was released after the death of Cobain. Thanks to airplay, the song hit #22 in the US in October, 1994, which was about 6 months after Cobain died.
The album Bleach initially sold about 35,000 copies, which was pretty good for an Indie band and got them signed to a major label. The album eventually sold over 1 million copies, as many Nirvana fans bought it after Cobain died.
This was popular on college radio long before Nirvana hit it big.
The album cost about $600 to produce. They got the title from a public service campaign in San Francisco that urged intravenous drug users to "Bleach Your Works," meaning to clean their needles with bleach so they would not spread the AIDS virus. At one point, Cobain wanted to call the album "Too Many Humans."
The cover of Bleach shows 4 band members. For a while, Nirvana had a second guitarist named Jason Everman.
On Nirvana's MTV Unplugged special, Cobain said, "This is off our first record, most people don't own it" before playing the song. (thanks, Elliot - St. Louis, MO)
Collaborating with T Bone Burnett, Leslie Phillips changed her name and left her Christian label behind. Robert Plant, who recorded one of her songs on Raising Sand
, is a fan.
Don Brewer of Grand Funk
The drummer and one of the primary songwriters in Grand Funk talks rock stardom and Todd Rundgren.
Don breaks down "Hotel California" and other songs he wrote as a member of the Eagles. Now we know where the "warm smell of colitas" came from.