Recently, I had the pleasure of being interviewed for the Nirvana Legacy site about my 2009 book, Grunge Is Dead: The Oral History of Seattle Rock Music, by the author of the forthcoming Nirvana book, I Found My Friends: The Oral History of Nirvana, Nick Soulsby. Some tidbits included the following:
Nick Soulsby: When was your first contact with the grunge scene, how did it come about?
Greg Prato: The first grunge band I fancied was Soundgarden, first via seeing the “Hands All Over” video on MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball, but I truly became a big-time admirer of the band after seeing them live in Brooklyn, NY in March 1990, on a bill that also featured Faith No More and Voivod (the latter of which headlined!). I then bought Mother Love Bone’s ‘Apple’ later in the year (after reading great things about it in Rip Magazine), followed by Alice in Chains’ ‘Facelift’ in spring 1991. From there, I discovered Nirvana and Pearl Jam just like the majority of other non-Washington folks did…
Nick: Similarly, at what point did you decide that the kind of epic work you must have put in to construct “Grunge is Dead” kick in…?
Greg: I felt very disappointed that seemingly as soon as Kurt Cobain died, rock music regressed to the largely unoriginal copycats that plagued rock music in the late ’80s (and that the very progressive way of thinking that Nirvana and Pearl Jam championed had regressed back to the groupie/rock star vibe of the Sunset Strip in the ’80s). This only seemed to get worse throughout the late ’90s and early 21st century (Creed, Kid Rock, etc.). While there were a few books written about grunge before ‘Grunge is Dead,’ many were either hard to follow chronologically or were written before main events took place (Cobain’s death, Soundgarden’s split, Layne Staley’s death, etc.). So, I set out to put together a definitive book that told the complete history of Seattle rock music, and interviewed as many people as possible.
Nick: Is there an interview you were particular proud to acquire and why…?
Greg: Without a doubt, Eddie Vedder. To the best of my knowledge, his interview for ‘Grunge is Dead’ is the only time he was willing to open up and recount Pearl Jam’s early history (he declined to do so for a Rolling Stone cover story around the same time) – years before he was interviewed for the book that Pearl Jam eventually did, ‘Pearl Jam Twenty.’ He was also kind enough to be interviewed for nearly 2 hours, willing to give thorough answers to all my questions. It remains one of my favorite interviews I’ve ever conducted (and having begun doing interviews in 1997 as a journalist, I’ve done hundreds over the years).
Keep your peepers peeled to this site, as I will soon be returning the favor, and interviewing Mr. Soulsby for Alternative Nation about his book!
To read the rest of the interview, click here.
For ordering info/read some samples of Grunge is Dead, scoot on over to here.