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March 1, 2020

March 1, 1994: Five Weeks Before Kurt Cobain's Death, Nirvana Performed Their Final Concert in Munich, Germany

Nirvana’s last concert ever took place on March 1st, 1994 in Munich, Germany, at Terminal Einz, an airplane hanger that fit 3,050 people. It was far from an ideal venue for a rock show and the acoustics were terrible, though Cobain didn’t realize this until the performance began since he skipped out on the soundcheck. The band opened with a sarcastic version of “My Best Friend’s Girl” by the Cars and had to start “Come as You Are” over again when the power went out. It was obvious to everyone in the crowd that Cobain was experiencing severe vocal issues.

By the time Nirvana reached Munich, Cobain was suffering from bronchitis as a result of the rigors of their European tour. Cellist Melora Creager joined the band for this leg, replacing Lori Goldston who spent the previous year on the road with the group. They also decided to have touring guitarist Pat Smear take over back-up vocal duties from Dave Grohl.

Bassist Krist Novoselic noted the Spinal Tap-like circumstances and said, “We’re not playing the Munich Enormodome tonight. Because our careers are on the wane. We’re on the way out. Grunge is dead. Nirvana’s over. ... Our next record’s going to be a hip-hop record!”

After a brief delay, the power returned, and the band picked up where it left off, after removing the next song on the proposed set list, “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” The 23-song concert ended with “Heart-Shaped Box.” At 80 minutes, it was the shortest show of the tour.

Because of Cobain’s health, Nirvana canceled the rest of their European dates and Cobain flew to Rome to recuperate. Three days later, he was rushed to the hospital after overdosing on champagne and Rohypnol, which he had been taking to relieve the chronic stomach pain he had been suffering from for much of his adult life. At the time, it was suspected that overdose was accidental, but in the aftermath of his death, it was acknowledged that it was a suicide attempt.

A month later, on April 5, Cobain shot himself in his home. His body was discovered by an electrician three days later.

(via Ultimate Classic Rock)


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