Experiencing Nirvana: Grunge in Europe, 1989,a historic photo journal of the band’s pivotal first European tour featuring dozens of never-before seen early photographs of Kurt Cobain and Nirvana’s original lineuｐ
Independently published by Sub Pop founder Bruce Pavitt and filled with an unexpected trove of previously unseen photos from his personal collection, the immersive digital book-a “grunge micro-history”-chronicles Nirvana’s legendary 1989 maiden voyage overseas from a truly intimate perspective for the first time.
A portion of the proceeds from book sales will go to the Vera Project (http://theveraproject.org/) in Seattle. Vera is an all-ages volunteer fueled music and arts venue. By engaging participants at all levels of music production and community organizing, Vera strives to fulfill its mission to foster a participatory creative culture through popular music concerts, arts programs, experiential learning and volunteer opportunities for all ages, especially young people. Vera’s programs are always all ages, with a focus on young people ages 14 to 24.
Pavitt will be doing a “Meet the Author” session at the SOHO Apple Store (103 Prince Street, New York, NY 10012) Friday, November 16, at 7 pm. He’ll do a short reading, a Q&A session with legendary rock journalist Michael Azzarad and field questions from the audience. Pavitt will head over to the Ace Hotel (20 W 29th Street, New York, NY 10001) thereafter, where he’ll DJ a grunge set from 12 am – 2 am.
Experiencing Nirvana: Grunge in Europe, 1989, provides an inside look into a crucial eight-day period in the life of pre-fame Nirvana. Pavitt, who had signed the band to Sub Pop, connected with them in Rome, as they were finishing up a grueling European tour with fellow label-mates Tad. Pavitt followed the bands to London, where Nirvana and Tad would support headlining act Mudhoney to perform the biggest showcase of their careers, “LameFest UK.” Nirvana’s stunning opening performance that night at the Astoria Theater won over both fans and the influential British music press, and marked the beginning of their ascension from humble opening act to global superstars.
The book’s photos, taken by Pavitt with an Olympus pocket camera, were shot randomly and intuitively on venue stages, in dressing rooms, submerged in sweaty roiling crowds and while walking among the great monuments of Europe with a future icon who had only recently tasted life outside of his native Aberdeen. The candid, spontaneously shot images — sometimes out-of-focus or oddly cropped — enhance the book’s uniquely honest, revealing, and intimate feel. Mojo magazine’s Keith Cameron, who was among the press who attended the “LameFest UK” show, penned the forward. The book also includes an interactive map tracing the tour’s progress across Europe and reprints of original UK press coverage from 1989.
The book marks Pavitt’s return to the public after moving to Washington state’s remote Orcas Island following his departure from Sub Pop in 1996. Pavitt was compelled to create the book following his re-discovery of the photos, his desire to share a truly intimate look into Kurt Cobain’s less-chronicled musical adolescence with the world, and to correct the historical misconception of grunge as a soundtrack for anguish and depression instead of the loud, sweaty, joyous and fun music he experienced at its inception.
Pavitt was also driven by recognizing Apple’s iBooks Author book creation app as the natural evolution of the DIY ‘zine culture where he first cut his teeth. Pavitt and collaborator Dan Burke created the book with iBooks Author, and are self-publishing exclusively on Apple’s iBookstore.
Download Experiencing Nirvana: Grunge in Europe, 1989 from the iBookstore at http://bit.ly/WWE89T