It's late Friday afternoon at CiTR FM 101.9 in July of 1991. The phone rings. Nobody's around to inteview the band on the line. I volunteer to do it. What follows is an excerpt of my first encounter with Courtney Love...
Nardwuar: I said, "Babes in Toyland."
Courtney Love: Well, why did you even bring them up?
Because I once saw them at a gig and they had Danelectro guitars.
Well, I don't have a Danelectro guitar.
I didn't know that. Now I know. Thank you.
So what if I don't have a Danelectro guitar? What the fuck difference does that make? Fuckin'Mudhoney probably had Danelectro guitars. Red Kross probably had Danelectro guitars. Tad probably has Danelectro guitars.
Is Lux of the Cramps 53 years old?
I don't know.
I noticed your P.O. box says Hollywood, California... You there Courtney?
You know what? I've got to go. It's really been fun talking to you.
I'm sorry Courtney.
I'm glad you like our band I hope you come to our show.
I'm sorry Courtney.
I'm super-impressed that you have a radio show. I hope you have lots of listeners. And I hope that you have a great life.
But Courtney, before you go, can I say something to you?
Oh, you can say something.
I am sorry. Here I am apologizing again. I'm sorry that I began off with that question: "Has anyone ever been mad that Hole isn't an all-girl band ?" I didn't mean to bring that up at all.
You're asking the most obnoxious questions. They're like rude and pointless and they don't mean anything about anything.
Okay, well I guess in the future I should do more research.
Would that have been better? Finally, here, what would have been the best question to ask you, Courtney of the rock band Hole?
I have no idea, Nardwuar. Talk to you later, though.
Okay thank you very much
Hoping to ask Courtney a few questions at Hole's August, 1993 appearance at the Town Pump, I arrive extra early at the venue:
Hello, Courtney. Hi, its me, Nardwuar.
I told him to get you out of here. You're not allowed back here.
I was going to say "hi" to you.
But you're not allowed back here, Nardwuar.
But I just want to say "hi" to you. I brought my camera here, too.
Nardwuar, I hate your fucking guts. You're such a pig.
Oh thank you! Oh why again? Oh, thanks . You're not going to punch me yet.
No, why? Why? I'll get sued.
I don't understand what exactly was wrong with that Vanity Fair thing.
Go get the guy from the upstairs, the promoter guy to get rid of Nardwuar. Go get him, Kristen, do it quick because I'm going to beat the fuck out of him really soon!
Courtney, can you say it into the mic a bit more?
No, I am not going to say anything into the mic.
Courtney, can I get an interview with you?
No, I hate your guts Nardwuar. You're such an idiot. Why would I give you an interview? You're an idiot. Why would I give you a fucking interview? Get what?
Courtney Love of Hole.
Courtney (to promoter): You've already broken your promise to me.
Promoter: I know, Nardwuar: Courtney: This is a bad sign.
Courtney can you at least, will you at least...Can you at least sign-
You're the first person I've seen. I was like the whole way up here, "Nardwuar!, Nardwuar! I can't wait to see that little-
Promoter: Do you have official permission for this?
Courtney: Do you have a laminate?Promoter: Yeah, do you have a laminate?
I've got a laminate.
Promoter: Where is it?
Somewhere in my wallet.
Will you allow me one final request,Courtney, like the phone call you get when you get arrested?
(The interview continues on for another 25 minutes and ends on a high note after I offer to buy Courtney the cigarettes she wants.)
Tuesday, January 4th, 1994, Nirvana's playing the PNE Forum. I don't have a ticket, but decide to "mope" outside the venue. Out of the blue, Courtney arrives at the gig, gives me a LAMINATE, ahem, LAMINATE, and drags my sorry ass backstage. I've been forever grateful. Here's a snippet of our 25 minute conversation:
Kurt, did you first meet Courtney Love, I heard a rumour; I think I read it in Interview Magazine, that Kurt and Courtney first met-(Kurt coughts. A lot.)
Courtney: Stop. That's rude.
Did you first meet at a DOA gig in Portland, Oregon?
Kurt: Mm-hmmm. Yup.
Courtney: (Laughs. A lot.)
So there really is a Canadian connection then.
Kurt: Wasn't it NoMeansNo? It was our show!
Kurt: It was my show. I played with DOA a couple of times.
Courtney: I don't remember where.
So there is a Canadian connection. A Canadian band has something to do with Kurt and Courtney!
Kurt: Like yes. Honestly, I don't remember which show it was.
Courtney: I don't remember, I was too drunk.
Kurt: Me, too.
Hole returns to Vancouver's Commodore Ballroom on Tuesday, November 15th, 1994. Security is ultra-tight. Somehow, mostly due to the efforts of John M. from Geezuz Fanzine and Leora K. from CBC's Realtime, I weasel my way through the bouncers to Courtney:
First off, did you-
Which one am I (pointing to a Grateful Dead record)? Well guess, Nardwuar! Patti, Eric, get (Spin writer) Craig Marks! This is me on the back cover of Aoxomoxoa.. Guess which one I am. I'm the one that doesn't like the Grateful Dead.There! (pointing ) It's me! Where's my father?(pointing) See my father. No, right back there. There he is. Gross fat daddy.
Did he live on Bowen Island?
Yeah, There's gross fat daddy. Where's my mother? Let's find my mom. Come on everyone let's find my mom. Where's Linda? Where's my mom? Can anyone else find my mom? I know where she is. She's right by Bob Weir.
Did you just smoke a cigar with Danny DeVito?
Yeah, the other night. I'm doing this movie that he's producing with Keanu Reeves. Mom! Mom, Dad, and Courtney.
How did this rumour start thay you're on the back of a Grateful Dead record?
I told people. It's the truth.
Are you in the upcoming Quentin Tarantino film at all?
No, I was asked to try out, but I had more important things to do so I didn't.
You did give that baseball cap to Michael Stipe and I love it, that punk rock one?
Mmm, yeah. I smoked a cigar with Danny DeVito and so did Patti. I'm doing this Keanu Reeves fuck movie. I fuck Keanu Reeves and I die, which American wants me to do, die and get fucked because that's all they talk about: is me dying and who I'm fucking. So I figure that if Americans can fulfill their fantasy through a big hearthrob like Keanu, they can fulfill their fantasy of me dying, which I don't particular want me to do right now. Look! It's Melissa the Canadian! (Melissa Auf De Maur walks in.)
Melissa Auf De Maur! The Doughboy's song "Shine" was written about you!
Melissa: Ha! Courtney: See that's because she's a scenester like me and Patti. We all have songs written about us.
Courtney, what's this thing Steve Hawkman wrote about you standing in front of clubs greeting fans after shows?
Steve Hawkman hates me. He'll write anything mean...It got to the point where I would be in malls with people asking for autographs and like there would be wierd Garth Brooks people that didn't know who I was and I would be like, " Do you know the name of my band?" 'cause they had watched a Current Affair. or People Magazine and I would say, "Well, name a fucking song and then I'll sign an autograph. " And they couldn't. But if you're at a show, then obviously you know the name of a song.
So Better Homes and Gardens, Spin Magazine- what's the difference?
Did you read the Hole thing? It's about mothers crying . I know a lot of boys who became rock stars. Their moms were all abusive. It's four boys I know that became really big rock stars and all their moms were really abusive and after they became rock stars, its like the abuse never existed. And they all got real Oedipal on their sons.
It's great to have you back in Canada Courtney Love.
I'm a great Canadian supporter, Nardwuar.
And you've got Melissa Aud Der Maur.
She paying Canadian taxes with our money. How's Cub? Are they still around?
Yes, Cub are still happening.
Patti: You are in this month's Flipside, aren't you?
Yes, I am, wearing this exact same outfit, believe it or not.
Hey, did you see my review in Melody Maker, of you?
Yeah, I did. Thank you very much, Courtney Love. That was very nice of you. Talk about payback. Single of the Week #4!. That"s pretty exciting-
Yeah, I went to Rome the next day and Kurt OD'd , so that kind of marred the whole Single of the Week thing.
That must have been a let-down. What about that last thing, though. The Velocity Girl/Elektra deal and the Reverend Horton Heat/Interscope deal? I don't understand those ones.
People are trawling. They're desperate. That's 'cause of Danny Goldberg, who's like in our will as the minder of our child, he's an insanely great guy but he's also the most powerful man int he world. He's the CEO of Time-Warner which means that our manager, Janet Bilig, is now the youngest-at 25-Senior Vice-President of Atlantic Records CEO. So we had to go this management called Q-Prikme which Veruca Saltare with and they manage Metallicaand Def Leppard.So there's a bit of a gender and old school flip.
And speaking of flip and Flipside and Bob Cantu, his good friend joy Aoki, she said that once you were on an airplane in South America-by the way, you played the tune "Rio" tonight-
Eric: No, we didn't! We did "Hungry Like the Wolf." You have your Duran Duran wrong! Courtney to Eric: It doesn't work when you talk back to him (Nardwuar) in his language. You have to be yourself. I figured Nardwuar out a long time ago. Courtney to Nardwuar: So go on.
You played the song "Hungry Like the Wolf." Now, did you not once fly to Brazil and did not the airplane crash and you attacked the pilot almost.
No. Me and Patti were leaving London out of Heathrow and the plane crashed and we got really pissed off. We were first class, by the way. It was a 767 all the way across the Atlantic straight to Seattle and they flew the same one the next day. I went Concorde. I made Patti fly go on the 767. It was fucking United International.
Courtney, who is Melissa Townsend?
Eric: A psychic from New York. Courtney: Oh, yes, she's a really good psychic.
She's your psychic and Madonna's psychic as well?
Yeah, she did our charts together because Madonna hates me but now she's trying to make up with me. So whatever. She's like saying things in the press like if she didn't exist, then Courtney wouldn't exist, 'cause she wants me to respond but I'm not going to.
Great! One last thing?
(grabbing Nardwuar) I want to blow you!
Thank you, Courtney Love.
Nardwuar, why do you make yourself so sexless. Come on MAN!
I've got my hair shorter now. Can we
It's the woman in me.
And Melissa Auf Der Maur binding with Billy Corgan.
Me and Melissa have both bonded with Billy-
Over the Piscean birthdates.
Yes... and Kurt and Billy, both have the same birthday. Eric: What about Jello?
Eric: Yeah, I heard you two have a thing going! (Nardwuar showing Eric and Courtney an ET toy)
They've reissued those recently.
Yeah, well under Eric's house is a vintage store and they just did a huge ET thing in the window like Et lunchboxes and everything ET and Drew (Barrymore) saw it and she thought it was really funny.
But she's not here tonight, is she?
No, she doesn't follow Eric around like a dog except sometimes. Eric: No but I'm going to tell her all about you. Courtney: Eric wears the pants in this relationship-and I'm really happy because I was kind of worried because she's a starlet girl- is she going to dump you and break your heart? And Eric was like, "No man, I wear the fuckin' pants."
The last tune you did tonight could have had a Mecca Normal vibe.
It was a Leadbelly song Nardwuar.
But it kind of had a Mecca Normal vibe... did you ever see Mecca Normal?
If you say "Mecca Normal" around me again, I will kick you in the nuts.
Okay, I will never say that again By the way, we are missing Lois the most tonight.
Where are the Olympia Five?
Who are the Olympia Five?
Let's see. Candace, Calvin,... ...Lois,
Pat Maley, who's the fifth?
But Candace is so friendly. But this was what I was wondering. Have you seen this at all, Courtney Love. What is this? (pointing to Mad Love, a collection of Courtney's Internet postings) It's like your Internet communiques. Yes.Hey, Birkenstock, how are you? I'm all right. All right! Do you have one?
No I don't. I'm not totally into it. I'm still into pen and paper.
This is kind of fun and stuff but what is really weird is how they fucking give such a shit about how I'm spelling. It's like what, I work to be a clerical worker? I didn't take typing class, assholes.
But the Olympia Five, like Candace is so friendly though.
No, Candace is not friendly. Candace is the one - do you know the Internet posting that's like Sneaky Pete that's got all this crazy shit. It's like got 'I'm chasing all these rock star guys around, but when it's convenient, I'm in bed with them.' And it's really evil and it's really chronologically crazy and then at the end Mark Arm OD's in me and Kurt's hotel room and someone from the Supersuckers was like - and I got it from a really good source I heard it was Candace and I heard it was Candace who did the really evil fax because Danny said something at Kurt's funeral that was really beautiful and a couple of people crashed that. Slim Moon And Mary Lou Lord and Candace. Oh, I beat the shit out of Mary Lou Lord the other night in front of Danny DeVito. It was really insane. She came up to me. Danny DeVito had just left and she comes up to me and says, "Hi."
How did she get backstage?
I fucking don't know. There were like only 20 people left. All the stars were gone and whatever. And I got up and I was like in the 1200 dollar dress and I'm barefoot and I started chasing her and these Samoan guys tried to stop me and I chased her and chased her all the way behind Gower Golds. I think she was hiding in a dumpster.
Patti: You cleaned her clock first!
Courtney: I fucking clocked her out, but I didn't clock her out enough because I wanted to kill her, right? But instead I look behind me and there were like 100 kids -
But you were "pretty on the inside" and you stayed at "four star hotels." Didn't she say that?
I know, but she slept in my park. She has a restraining order. She's had a restraining order - Kurt put a restraining order on her two years ago. She's crazy.
Is that park called Vendetta Park, that park right next door to you house?
Veretta Park or something like that. I know cause when we moved in, I said, "Kurt, that's a park. People can come there."
It's like a public place.
Yeah and he goes, "No one knows about that park." Which is a kind of a pain. And the Starbucks people live next door and they have a suit against the city now and they're trying take our land. We live in the house that Mr. Blaine built and we live in Denny Blaine and they're taking our land and Mr. Blaine gave us that land. It's a nightmare.
Have you seen this tribute to Kurt Cobain mag featuring a "Courtney Carries On" story. It's kind of scary but I don't know who actually wrote this thing, this story on you. It's this magazine (showing it to Courtney). There's like no authorship credit. All there is is a barcode. Why are these people not being punished for what they're doing? There is no information, they've got a barcode but they've got a story on you and they sell it at the 7-11.
There's a barcode on this? It's probably Rip. Rip can do this.
But how can they do it without giving authorship credit or anything?
They just do. I've gone to court... You see, one good thing about publishing is that they know I will put my money where my mouth is know because I've spent, and Kurt has spent, so much money on suing them, and a lot of times, especially in Britain and with tabloid journalism here, they think you're not going to spend the money to sue them. But once you lay down about a hundred grand on litigation, they start getting a little bit more careful.
And finally, Courtney, what is going on here? I still don't understand this. (showing National Enquirer with Evan Dando and Courtney kissing)
Ev and me kissing?
It's the only time I've bought the National Enquirer.
What's so wrong with Ev and me kissing? Big fucking deal.
Hey, you want a kiss? Here. (kisses Nardwuar) Alright, Enquirer! (kisses others too)
Voice in background: What about me?
Courtney: I don't know you. And you've got a mustache.
Me and Evan kissing, ha ha. I think it's funny.
There were other articles in the Enquirer -
They were right with Kurt's ashes because I took them up to Ithaca to the Buddhist monastary so I had them in a teddy bear, which you would do, too.
Do you remember the guy taking the photo?
No, it was a girl. It was Todd, the guy in the Juliana Hatfield Three who got kicked out for being a junkie. It was his little girlfriend who Evan actually was fucking. And we thought it would be a really funny idea to make out on film.
Do you remember the last time you were here with the Lemonheads at the Commodore Ballroom?
Yeah, it was the most horrible show.
You smashed your guitar. And what did you say to the audience?
I said, "You guys don't know that it's cool to like us yet, so we will come back when you do."
"And you will be lining up when you come to see us next." And it happened here tonight.Thank you so much Courtney Love
Thank you, Nardwuar the Human Serviette Turtle.
Doot doodle doot doo...
Radio free fucking Europe.
Patti: Doo doo! This happened last time!