Judas Priest, Pantera, Alice in Chains Members Remember Kurt Cobain on 20th Anniversary of His Suicide

"He'll be there with Hendrix and Lennon and Joplin and Morrison," Rob Halford says.

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Marking the 20th anniversary of Kurt Cobain's suicide, prominent rock and metal musicians remembered the late Nirvana frontman, paying tributes in various ways.

Former Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul noted that although grunge did a quite a lot of damage to the metal scene, he was still very much fond of Nirvana. "Nirvana was a huge band and I, like everybody else, I think - I don't know anybody who ever said they weren't a fan of them - thought they were great," the drummer noted (via Blabbermouth). "And I was terribly shocked and kind of mortified as to what happened, you know. I never knew Kurt was that depressed and that kind of stuff, you know. Just didn't seem that way to me, you know. He was just big and larger than life."

Judas Priest singer Rob Halford went a step further, placing Kurt next to some of the ultimate rock greats. "He was an absolute genius," he said. "In the legacy of rock and roll music, he'll be there with, like, Hendrix and Lennon and Joplin and Morrison. Incredibly evocative, inspiring, controversial, human musician. For me, there's been nothing great since Nirvana, in the way it shook up the world. There's been nothing great since that band."

Alice in Chains guitarist Jerry Cantrell noted, "I didn't really know Kurt that well, but there was a guy I always admired. We didn't spent much time together, but the few times we did spend together, you know, were times I'll always remember. You know, he was a really sweet guy, and a really genuine soul, you know, and an incredibly talented artist."

Brian "Head" Welch of Korn also shared his memories of Cobain, saying, "I just remember tripping and going, 'Wow, that guy must have been like really in a dark place,' you know. It just shows you, you know, like that life isn't all about fame and being a rock star and making it and money and all that stuff, you know. It's about finding like who you are and being happy inside and finding that place, because you can have the whole world and still want to kill yourself. You know, even 20 years later, it's like a reality check, you know. We should use this, his anniversary of his death, as a reality check."

Joining the tributes, Dave Grohl posted a photo of Kurt on the Foo Fighters' Instagram page, along with a stream of the Beatles' "In My Life," a track Cobain was very fond of and which was ultimately played at his funeral.

The tributes didn't end there, as quite a few artists opted to honor Kurt by playing one of Nirvana tunes live. Check out the Muse rendition of "Lithium" below.

Kurt was found dead at his on Lake Washington Boulevard on April 8, 1994. The police investigation determined that the frontman had committed suicide three days before, on April 5. He was 27 years old.

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36 comments sorted by best / new / date

    Whilst we should continue to remember Kurt Cobain, it was kind of suckish to see everyone on Facebook only writing "RIP Kurt Cobain" because many people don't seem to remember the other grunge legend who died on an April 5th, Layne Staley in 2002.
    Agreed, I think the attention should be given to both Kurt and Layne (even though I don't really listen to Alice In Chains that much), but sadly that's not the case. Though it has been 20 years since Kurt passed away, which is why the attention is on him.
    I guess the 20th Anniversary thing is a bit reason for Kurt getting most of the attention, but it's been like that most every other year too. I remember in 2012 when there were loads of people paying tribute to Kurt on my news reed and someone had to point out that it was the 10th Anniversary of Layne's death.
    As an AIC fanatic, it pissed me off indeed... Both singer should be honored...
    Not grunge but likewise worth remembering Cozy Powell, that legendary drummer - died 5 April 1998.
    3 rockstars died on 5th April (different years). Spooky coincidence also that 3 rockstars died on 8th December (different years).
    I wholehearted agree. Layne was also a pivotal figure in, grunge, music at the time, Kurt being the more well known of the two. Regarding Vinnie Paul's statement that grunge did damage to metal. That is FALSE. Metal damaged metal. IIRC Pantera was also a hair metal band at one time. If they continued down that path they would have been just as guilty in hurting teh brootz.
    Exactly. And Halford is spot on, theres been nobody since who has had the same impact that Kurt did. We can live in hope tho.
    I think people forget about Layne because it was years after his fame that he died, I still have the news paper clipping from when he died. He was a junkie and chose to do drugs and not make music.
    You should have left it after the first half. AiC didn't our or really do anything for about 6 years before Layne's death and I feel like Kurt was talked about more because he was the poster child of the 'grunge' genre and "killed himself" so brutally. Oh and PS, metal killed itself as much as any other genre, it got milked to death then people moved on to the next thing, it happens with every genre. Hell if anything killed 80's heavy Metal it was Nu Metal
    If I would have read "you know" in one more of these idiots quotes my head would explode.
    As an interviewer, if I had a nickel for every time I had to edit out a "you know," I'd be paid MUCH much more.
    Instead of arguing or getting pissed, lets take action.... R.I.P. Kurt Cobain, and Layne Staley.
    Everyone thinks that 'Metal' bands hate Nirvana/Grunge because it 'killed' metal. Now, let's think for a minute, Metal has never ****ing died! Actually I think right now it's stronger than ever! In the early 90's it just became not so mainstream anymore because MTV hammered everyone with Grunge, it wasn't Nirvana's fault! It was MTV! So i completely understand why these metal giants would want to pay their respects to Kurt.
    If anything, I believe Grunge gave Metal a serious boot up the arse, it's not like it killed Metal, because Death Metal was getting very popular in the early 90's as well, not only that, but dozens of underground scenes were cropping up all over the world. Metal never needed the mainstream, Metal, much like Punk, was perfectly fine existing on the fringes of society.
    Wow, I can't believe it's been 20 years! I can still remember that day - I was a junior in high school and a HUGE Nirvana fan. It was a sad day.
    You have to wonder if Kurt didnt kill himself what would music be like today?
    Kurt really did change music as we know it. I think because he introduced grunge to the mainstream, he ended the rock n roll revolution, if you think about it. Also he is one of the most influential artist's. His loud obnoxious sound when he was with nirvana was what made them good.
    you know im like brian welch here, and im talking about not wanting to you know, like, only make money you know
    I wish cobain was still alive just so these grunge turds would stop worshipping him as a messiah of music. Nirvana may very well b the most overrated band in music. They destroyed what made being a musician awesome and I'm glad the ride is over for nirvana. There r countless other bands that slay nirvanas choir boy music, but because cobain sang like he had marbles in his mouth, wore homeless man clothes, and wrote simple guitar riffs that a beginner could play, they r "legendary"
    They "destroyed what made being a musician awesome"? Everyone's entitled to their opinion but that has to be one of the dumbest things I've read in a while. Pop-glam-metal (or whatever) destroyed itself.
    did a 12 year old write this article "grunge did damage to true metal" come on stop this childish immature shit OMGZZZ GRUNGE WAS NOT COOL MAN RAWK AND RAWL GUNS N ROSES POISON! THE 80'S! RATT! BIG HAIR AND SOLOOOOO'S! what a load of shit. also that muse cover is horrific
    technically, Vinnie is right. MTV put Nirvana on high rotation, therefore pushing metal back into the underground more. He also goes on to say he thought they were great. Not sure why you think he's being childish or immature here.
    To be fair Muse shouldn't have even played that gig because of Bellamy's voice.
    No matter how "true metal" some of you are trying to be. You can't deny that Nirvana made some great music.