Rolling Stone has a piece today on the story behind Kurt Cobain’s character in Guitar Hero 5. Getting Nirvana’s music in the game seems to have taken some wrangling with Courtney Love and Universal Publishing, but also apparently with Dave Grohl, the magazine reports.
Not surprisingly, though, it sounds as if Courtney was a particularly difficult negotiation. An Activision executive explains some of her requests, particularly on how buff the digital Kurt would be:
Naturally, Love did have some concerns. Namely, Cobain’s physique, [exec Tim] Riley reveals. “Courtney supplied us with photos and videos and knew exactly what she wanted Kurt to look like,” he says. “She picked the wardrobe and hair style, which turned out to be the ‘Teen Spirit’ look, then we went back and forth over changes — some subtle, some not so subtle.” In column B? Love’s reference to the Greek God Adonis, whose youthful good looks made the male deity an object of desire. “She certainly had a physical image in mind,” says Riley. “She wanted him to have that sort of athletic definition but not overly so.”
Was it Courtney or Dave Grohl who got the Daniel Johnston shirt in there? And does Daniel get any licensing bread from this?
Rolling Stone also has a brief video of scenes from the game’s Nirvana songs, which are “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and a live version of “Lithium.” On this clip, at least, there’s virtually no screen time for any of the rest of the band, but curiously there is another guitarist on stage, and it looks vaguely like Pat Smear. Which might be a slight anachronism: Smear joined for the In Utero tour, when Cobain didn’t look like this anymore.