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Journals
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Journals

4.5 122
by Kurt Cobain
 

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The lyrics notebook and personal journals of Kurt Cobain, iconic singer of the band Nirvana.

Kurt Cobain filled dozens of notebooks with lyrics, drawings, and writings about his plans for Nirvana and his thoughts about fame, the state of music, and the people who bought and sold him and his music. His journals reveal an artist who loved music, who knew the

Overview

The lyrics notebook and personal journals of Kurt Cobain, iconic singer of the band Nirvana.

Kurt Cobain filled dozens of notebooks with lyrics, drawings, and writings about his plans for Nirvana and his thoughts about fame, the state of music, and the people who bought and sold him and his music. His journals reveal an artist who loved music, who knew the history of rock, and who was determined to define his place in that history. Here is a mesmerizing, incomparable portrait of the most influential musician of his time.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"The year's most fascinating, heart-breaking rock book."—Rolling Stone"An engrossing collection of clues."—Entertainment Weekly"His words kick and scream."—Chicago Daily Herald“Compelling.”—Seattle Times“No editing, no footnotes: The Nirvana singer’s Journals is the year’s most fascinating, heartbreaking rock book.”—Rolling Stone Magazine“Especially riveting.”—The Observer Magazine“Compelling reading...a look into the creative process of one of rock’s true artists.”—The Seattle Times“The daily diary of an American dream—and nightmare...Beneath all the layers of irony and sarcasm and humor and stoner realism, Cobain had a gift for sincerity, which is everywhere evident in his journals...The book is swarming with life, and it’s irresistible to anyone who cares about the music.”—New York Magazine“Illuminating...charming...we catch glimpses of Cobain’s wry, mischievous humor.”—Newsday“Our most elaborate first-hand evidence of the inner life of one of rock’s most important figures.”—New York Daily News“Laced with humor and horror...wrenchingly candid.”—LA Times“Simple and plain, Kurt Cobain was a fuckin’ genius...Journals may become his most enduring body of work. If Cobain’s life was a movie, Journals is the director’s cut, the musings and contemplations of a mad genius. More than that, these passages are some of the most interesting reading I’ve come across in years, and I boldly predict they will stand the immeasurable test of time...Journals, better than any biography could hope to be, will make essential reading for anyone looking to understand the 1990s’ most important pop star.”—Salon.com“It displays the formative stages of a man whose deeply felt empathy became something close to a curse...This remarkable document finally stands as one last message from the saddest teenager in the world, hiding his diary in a drawer near an easy-to-find key.”—Entertainment Weekly“Fascinating and often charming.”—New York Post“I heard Cobain’s voice in my head as I read his journals.”—Telegraph“How could the intimate diaries of one of rock’s most memorable and credible icons be anything less than page-turningly compulsive?...The hype is deserved. You won’t be disappointed.”—The Zone“These hand-written fragments from a life say more than any biography would or could...Cobain was a man who struggled so hard for definition, it seems fitting that, even after death, he should be allowed to speak for himself.”—Evening Standard"Facsimile pages—complete with sketches, margin scribbles, and handwriting in various states of dishevelment—argue for never again typesetting a diary."—MOJO
Publishers Weekly
These journal entries by Nirvana front man Cobain record his thoughts from the late 1980s until his suicide in 1994. There are no real answers to his death to be found in this collection of scrawled notes, first drafts of letters, shopping lists, and ballpoint pen drawings, although the nature of Cobain's fame will make it hard for readers not to look for them. At best, a series of intimate portraits emerge: a kid from high school; a cousin and neighbor; a bright, sensitive, fun-loving and morbid punk rocker who became spokesman for a generation he largely detested. Cobain's journals remind fans of how unlikely was his rise to fame: here was a kid from Aberdeen, dreaming of being in the next Meat Puppets, not the next Doors, who signed on with an independent label named SupPop, and ended up changing the course of commercial radio. Cobain's early letters to fellow rockers in the grunge scene also remind readers of how small and close that community was, and of the fairly incendiary politics it had developed through the Reagan years. For a true punk believer like Cobain, the loss of that community was also the loss of himself. (Nov.) Copyright 2003 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
The question of how to package Cobain's journals (originally contained in more than 20 notebooks) became as important as whether they should be published. Courtney Love, Cobain's widow, ultimately decided to go with Riverhead, and her choice appears to have been a good one. Reproduced here are actual notebook pages, filled with the musician's drawings, thoughts, desires, moods, lists, and declarations, showcasing his many talents, as much as his penchant for morbidity, in an amalgamation of handwritings. While this collection offers another level of intimacy for fans who have already experienced the musician's life via records, news clippings, album art, and several biographies, no one involved with the project provides any context, and this absence is keenly felt. Notes are scattered and applied to things that are of little interest, while other confusing pieces are left without the slightest comment. Given Love's vigilance in all matters Nirvana and Cobain, it is surprising that she was not more hands-on here. Still, Journals remains a good complement to Charles R. Cross's Heavier Than Heaven, which references the notebooks, and a unique addition to popular music collections.-Rachel Collins, "Library Journal"

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781573223591
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
11/04/2003
Edition description:
Reissue
Pages:
304
Sales rank:
35,405
Product dimensions:
8.40(w) x 10.80(h) x 0.93(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"The year's most fascinating, heart-breaking rock book."—Rolling Stone

"An engrossing collection of clues."—Entertainment Weekly

"His words kick and scream."—Chicago Daily Herald

“Compelling.”—Seattle Times

“No editing, no footnotes: The Nirvana singer’s Journals is the year’s most fascinating, heartbreaking rock book.”—Rolling Stone Magazine

“Especially riveting.”—The Observer Magazine

“Compelling reading...a look into the creative process of one of rock’s true artists.”—The Seattle Times

“The daily diary of an American dream—and nightmare...Beneath all the layers of irony and sarcasm and humor and stoner realism, Cobain had a gift for sincerity, which is everywhere evident in his journals...The book is swarming with life, and it’s irresistible to anyone who cares about the music.”—New York Magazine

“Illuminating...charming...we catch glimpses of Cobain’s wry, mischievous humor.”—Newsday

“Our most elaborate first-hand evidence of the inner life of one of rock’s most important figures.”—New York Daily News

“Laced with humor and horror...wrenchingly candid.”—LA Times

“Simple and plain, Kurt Cobain was a fuckin’ genius...Journals may become his most enduring body of work. If Cobain’s life was a movie, Journals is the director’s cut, the musings and contemplations of a mad genius. More than that, these passages are some of the most interesting reading I’ve come across in years, and I boldly predict they will stand the immeasurable test of time...Journals, better than any biography could hope to be, will make essential reading for anyone looking to understand the 1990s’ most important pop star.”—Salon.com

“It displays the formative stages of a man whose deeply felt empathy became something close to a curse...This remarkable document finally stands as one last message from the saddest teenager in the world, hiding his diary in a drawer near an easy-to-find key.”—Entertainment Weekly

“Fascinating and often charming.”—New York Post

“I heard Cobain’s voice in my head as I read his journals.”—Telegraph

“How could the intimate diaries of one of rock’s most memorable and credible icons be anything less than page-turningly compulsive?...The hype is deserved. You won’t be disappointed.”—The Zone

“These hand-written fragments from a life say more than any biography would or could...Cobain was a man who struggled so hard for definition, it seems fitting that, even after death, he should be allowed to speak for himself.”—Evening Standard

"Facsimile pages—complete with sketches, margin scribbles, and handwriting in various states of dishevelment—argue for never again typesetting a diary."—MOJO

Meet the Author

Kurt Cobain was the leader of the groundbreaking Seattle rock band Nirvana.  He died in 1994.

Customer Reviews

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Journals 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 122 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book puts you right into the life of Kurt Cobain. It shows you how Kurt truely felt about situations in his life. It is greatly detailed. This is Kurt's life in his words not anyone else's. I could not think of any better way of telling Kurt's life story but from his own personal journals.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you are a Nirvana fan 'Journals' by: Kurt Cobain is an absolute must! The first page says something like 'I'm going to work, don't read my diary...' then 'Read my diary and figure me out.' Of course that's not exactly what it said but close. Kurt Cobain's mind was a wonderous thing and with this book you can start to understand it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
a good book,lets you really get in kurt cobains head ,I dont know if thats ok but its very interesting
Guest More than 1 year ago
The wisdom of my life comes from the lyrics that Kurt Cobain spoke on the stage with his music. When i listen to his music i feel like he sang the song because he knew what is inside of me of pain.
Guest More than 1 year ago
OK before kirt died he said 'When i die take my things read my diary go through my things find out what you know about me not what you hear show the world who the real kirt kobain is.' so any body that thinks this is wong donest know enoughf about him this is a stong book and it tells you a lot about him i think every body should read this let kirt rest in peace we love you
Guest More than 1 year ago
Kurt Cobain was and is more influencial than any politian has been or ever will be.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Don't read this unless you really respect Kurt's opionons. And don't read it unless you really love him, because then it won't make any sense to you. If you just like a few of his songs, it won't do you any good. This IS the only way you'll understand him in his own words. You'll finally understand him.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The overriding pain in his abdomen seemed to drive him to death more than anything else-could this have been chronic pancreatitis?It hurts like hell,is rare,cannot be fully cured,and only really responds to opiate treatment.Maybe this is what did him in.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Kurt Cobain was the most talented, deranged, beautiful being that has ever walked this earth. No one will ever come close to his mind, he was a genius. His heart and soul were trapped but at the same time free'd by the drugs, he lived off of them and died slowly everyday. Heroin was his "everyday suicide" (and true fans will understand what I mean by saying that), not the gun, Courtney did that, he would never leave his daughter, he loved her so much, he didn't even want to take his daughter in a car for fear of getting in an accident, he would lay in bed puking up his whole inside as long as he saw his beautiful creation everyday. Courtney was responsible for his death, and karma will take care of her. Kurt's no longer in physical pain, but he's still in emotional pain, even in his after-life. His daughter was the only thing that kept him alive all those years that suicide was taunting hin, begging him to give in, but he was strong for HIS DAUGHTER, he refused the temptation of suicide for her,not the money, fame, or Courtney. He would never leave her alone in the dark without his light to guide her, his daughter was his heart and soul, and music was his escape, and he was the "drug's toy". We'll miss you forever Kurt.....
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CVHunt More than 1 year ago
To anyone who is not a Nirvana fan - I don't know why you are even bothering to look at this. Read no further. For those who ARE Nirvana fans, tread forward with caution. This book was an insightful look into one of the most beautiful minds that I've ever had the pleasure of experiencing as it unfolded. People talk about where they were, or what they were doing when great catastrophes happened in the world. Laugh if you want, but I still remember where and what I was doing when I heard that Kurt Cobain was dead. I thought this book was a very interesting look into Kurt Cobain's mind. It's not an autobiography. Kurt kept journals, drawings, clips of paper with notes and thoughts sprawled across them, rough drafts, and unsent letters. This book is a wide variety of these things photocopied from the originals. Some writing is almost illegible. On other pages you can see the emotion in the jerky script. Most of the passages describe his frustration with the music industry, fanzines, and journalists that misunderstood him. In some areas it shows a lot of his beliefs about the world around him and what he believed to be a perfect society. When it comes down to it, you had to have been a fan to bother buying it, and you have to appreciate it for what it is. I will leave you with my own mad ramblings in a letter to Kurt that will never be sent. Kurt, They're not dyeing out like the dinosaurs. They have mutated into something much worse than you ever could have imagined. They've built a breed of music that no matter how many times you turn away, it keeps growing. They try to make it look like it's for our own good, but... It's just the beginning. The media has control. Now they tell us what we are supposed to like. Pop stars, the kid next door, and televised competitions for contracts? And it all revolves around selling the sexually provocative image of an under aged teen. Their voices are electronically altered, or it takes five people to sing one song, and not a single one of them knows how to play an instrument. It makes no sense to me that tweens are billboard successes, and they are singing about things that they won't come close to experiencing for another ten years. None of them write the lyrics. There is a small group of people in an ill lit room somewhere scribbling out the next big hit. I assure you the words; "baby", "party", or "hot" are well peppered through it. There are no deep meaningful songs anymore, no words to make you think hard, it's all superficial bull. Hell no, you're not allowed to express any other emotion than happiness or love. If you do.then it's considered too political. POLITICAL? It's politics to express frustration? The frustration of being spoon fed the same garbage over and over. I'm sorry, I would like some variety. Or how about you just quit playing the same crappy song so much I want to puke? I've given up on finding anything original in the air waves Kurt. I say turn off the radio station, unplug your MTV (that no longer plays music), and start searching. I refuse to let them feed me what they want me to like. I do not listen to the radio and I don't shop in stores for CDs. I've taken to searching the internet for bands that I've never heard of. I want to like bands that people think don't exist. They ask me, "Who's this?" I tell them the name of the band, and they always follow up with, "I've never heard of them." People never ask about the band again. If it can't be fed
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