Mike McCready discussed Pearl Jam’s relationship with Kurt Cobain in a new interview with Esquire.
“I’m working on a documentary called The Glamour and the Squalor right now, about a DJ named Marco Collins from Seattle and also San Diego. He was kind of integral to that time, with the alternative bands, all of us, on the radio, in Seattle. There’s some footage of Kurt [Cobain, in the documentary], of him talking about In Utero, and it made me think, “Wow, he’s so young.” He was in his mid-20s, when they interviewed him, and it brought me back to that time when there was this supposed tension between all of us, this press-created thing. There probably was some of that, but toward the end of it, there wasn’t. I think he and Ed had talked. I remember we were at the MTV VMAs, and I just jumped over the seats, and I said [to Cobain], “Hey, I heard you and Ed might be doing a record some day. I’d love to play a lead on it.” And he goes, “Oh, we’ll talk about it some other time.” I just felt like I had to reach out, because there was this weird wall between us, us versus them or them versus us, and it wasn’t. We all came from the same scene, in my mind. We came out of a very provincial city that was not very supportive of music, and we had to do our own thing, and flyer everywhere. There was never support from the city to do music there, not as there is now. We had to do that, Nirvana had to do that, the Soundgarden guys did that, but we’d all go to each other’s shows, too. We’d go to the same parties. So we all kind of came up together. When it got huge and we all went on the road, we were happy for everyone else, and I wish Kurt was happy, too. In this documentary, it made me kind of sad, obviously, to see him as such a young man, and wish he could be around to see where they’d be now, you know what I mean? It’s poignant and it’s celebratory, but also, there’s some sadness and darkness that goes along with it. That being said, In Utero is a fantastic record. I’m glad we’re still around. Soundgarden put out a record last year. Mudhoney played on top of the Space Needle. All sorts of cool stuff has happened, and I celebrate that. What that means today is, wow, we’re still around, I’m very grateful for it. There’s some beauty to it. And there’s some sadness.”