Hip-Hop were forced to bow down to Nirvana

Jay-Z has revealed he is a massive Kurt Cobain fan, and that ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ temporarily stopped the hip-hop world.

Speaking to super-producer Pharrell Williams in his new coffee table book Pharrell: The Places and Spaces I’ve Been, he said that Nirvana were so culturally powerful that hip-hop had to “wait awhile” before becoming the dominant sound of youth culture.

“‘Hair bands’ dominated the airwaves and rock became more about looks than about actual substance and what it stood for – the rebellious spirit of youth….That’s why ‘Teen Spirit’ rang so loud because it was right on point with how everyone felt,” he said.

He added that Cobain was a force bigger than hip-hop: “I have always been a person who was curious about the music and when those forces come on the scene, they are inescapable. Can’t take your eyes off them, can’t stop listening to them. Kurt Cobain was one of those figures. I knew we had to wait for a second before we became that dominant force in music.”

He continued: “It was weird because hip-hop was becoming this force, then grunge music stopped it for one second, ya know Those ‘hair bands’ were too easy for us to take out; when Kurt Cobain came with that statement it was like, ‘We got to wait awhile’.”

by Wallace McTavish


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