Jay-Z Says Kurt Cobain 'Stopped Hip-Hop Music'
Before Jay-Z became one of the most dominating forces in hip-hop, married to one of the most famous divas of our time, he was just a regular lad who enjoyed all genres of music, including grunge.
The 42-year-old rap mogul spoke to producer Pharrell Williams for his new coffee table book called Pharrell: The Places and Spaces I’ve Been and in it, he reveals that he believes Nirvana was so culturally powerful that in a way, they temporarily put a halt to hip-hop being the dominate sound of society’s youth.
Says Jay-Z, “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 goes on to say that he saw Kurt Cobain as a force larger 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. [Cobain] was one of those figures. I knew we had to wait for a second before we became that dominant force in music.”
He adds, “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’.”
I see what he’s saying here, and I believe Nirvana, like Jay-Z, really carved their niche in the music scene and made history. And at least with me, there’s love for the hair bands before them. I think there’s room for everyone.