It’s been 20 years since Kurt Cobain passed in what was officially ruled a suicide. Seattle police have released newly developed photos from the scene along with a note that Kurt had in his wallet, which was highly critical of his then-wife Courtney. The police say they’re releasing the new evidence in order to put the case to rest, but it’s only bringing up more questions. Kurt’s note was sarcastic and dismissive of Courtney and stands in stark contrast to his suicide note, which praised his wife in flowery language. Here’s some of the text of the note that was newly released:
Do you Kurt Cobain take Courtney Michelle Love to be your lawful shredded wife. Even when she’s a b–ch with zits and siphoning all yr [sic] money for doping and whoring… Will you promise to [expletive] her at least once a week, O.K.
And here’s what Kurt’s suicide note said about Courtney:
I have a goddess of a wife who sweats ambition and empathy and a daughter who reminds me too much of what i used to be, full of love and joy, kissing every person she meets because everyone is good and will do her no harm. And that terrifies me to the point to where I can barely function. I can’t stand the thought of Frances becoming the miserable, self-destructive, death rocker that I’ve become.
Those two sentiments about Courtney couldn’t be more different and point to Kurt having a change of heart before he took his life. Of course it’s also possibly that Kurt was being darkly humorous about Courtney in his note.
In light of these new developments, Radar interviewed Courtney’s dad, Hank Harrison, who thinks his daughter was involved in Kurt’s death. For those of us who followed the Kurt Cobain suicide, this isn’t exactly a new development. Years ago I saw a documentary on Kurt Cobain in which Harrison insinuated that his daughter was involved in Kurt’s death. (It was Kurt & Courtney, out in 1998, which many dismiss as a conspiracy movie. You can watch it on youtube.) He hasn’t changed his opinion on his daughter and still thinks she had something to do with Kurt’s death. Here’s what he told Radar:
“No doubt she was capable,” Harrison says. “I can’t prove she pulled the trigger, but I can prove her involvement to a high degree of certainty.”
“If you read the true meaning of this small note, and place it in conjunction with the rest of the evidence, anyone with even half a wit will see that something dire and awful took place,” Harrison alleges.
Harrison is also suspicious of the Seattle Police Department, who released never before seen pictures of the death scene last month, nearly twenty years after the incident.
“Nobody, except me, asked the obvious question: ‘Why weren’t they developed 20 years ago?’” he adds. “They weren’t developed because the police had already decided it was a suicide and didn’t need any more evidence.”
I rewatched the part of Kurt & Courtney were Courtney’s dad, Hank Harrison, was interviewed. That’s at 16:00 in to this video. Harrison has written two books about Kurt Cobain, and he is somewhat articulate yet vague about why he thinks Courtney had something to do with Kurt’s death. He said that Kurt and Courtney were definitely going to get a divorce. The documentarian, Nick Broomfield, asked Harrison to read out a passage from his book, Who Killed Kurt Cobain, a poem that Courtney Love wrote before Kurt died.
Harrison read the poem, which he published in Courtney’s handwriting to prove that she had written it. It was titled “Future Date” and was somewhat chilling. “A future date right over the horizon, right on the tip of your tongue. I’ll destroy everyone in my way, I’ll kill every lousy lay, because I got my eye on a future date.” Courtney is a singer songwriter so that may mean nothing. It’s all too nonspecific to jump to conclusions. Harrison added that “Courtney has had a reputation for being extraordinarily violent for a number of years.”
There’s more about Courtney’s life in Kurt & Courtney after that, including the detail that she was shuttled around between relatives and foster parents as a child. Courtney’s dad lost custody of her when she was just five so it’s not like he raised her or knows her at all. He may just be cashing in on the scandal by turning on his daughter, or he may be on to something. I tend to think that if there was more to Kurt’s death than drug use and suicide that the police would have found it. This was an extremely high profile case.
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