Kurt Cobain may have been influenced by punk legends like The Melvins or the Pixies but the late Nirvana singer grew up idolizing famed 1970s and 80s stuntman Evel Knievel.
Perhaps it’s no coincidence then that Nirvana’s breakthrough record, “Nevermind,” was recorded at Sound City Studios in Los Angeles, where much of Knievel’s own 1974 album “Evel Speaks to the Kids” was laid down.
“I remember walking in there the first day and thinking…’Really? This is such a fucking dump!'” ex-Nirmana drummer Dave Grohl says of the former recording space.
Grohl, whose new documentary “Sound City” recently debuted on VOD, said Cobain would go to great lengths to get closer to Knievel, one day stealing a recording of the iconic stuntman’s album while he and Grohl took a breather from recording “Nevermind.”
“(He) put it under his trenchcoat and walked out,” Grohl recalls of the Knievel-ling.
“He was like ‘Yeah! I got this Evel Knievel reel!’ and I was like ‘What the fuck are you going to do with that?” Grohl recalls. “You don’t have a 24” track machine!’
Millions of album sales later, according to Grohl, when Cobain was finally able to afford a player for his Knievel treasure, he was disappointed to learn he had stolen a spoken word album, instead of music, and tossed it out.
“Sound City,” which recently premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, arrives on DVD March 12.