Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Kurt Cobain sculpture commemorates death of a native son in Aberdeen

Seventeen years after his death, legendary Pacific Northwest grunge guitarist Kurt Cobain is finally being fully embraced by his former home town. 

A concrete sculpture replicating one of his guitars is now installed in a city park in Aberdeen.  Steven Friederich, a news reporter with the Aberdeen Daily World, who has a story on the unveiling on the site today, says for years, Aberdeen rejected Cobain as a drug addict. 

Now, Friedrich says, residents have created a whole park in his honor, because so many music-oriented tourists were coming in and crawling through the blackberry bushes to get beneath a bridge that's mentioned in one of Cobain's songs. 

Friederich says two guys who live near the bridge were so frustrated, they became inspired.  They tore into the blackberry brambles, using their own tools and brawn to create a more comfortable refuge for fans.

"They basically - Tori Kovach and DennyJackson -went to work on this park," Friederich says."They brought in signs, they started putting together just different ways for people to sit together and remember Curt."

And he adds, "neither of them were huge Curt Cobain fans.  We're talking - this would have been Curt's father's generation....and they have just done an amazing job.  They basically convinced the city to go along with them."

The sculpture, which was unveiled earlier today, has a steel ribbon dangling in the air with the lyrics from his song, "On a Plain." There's also a sign near the sculpture and the bridge that welcomes tourists with the words "come as you are.

Those words are the title of one of the band's hits from the 1991 breakthrough record,Nevermind

Cobain killed himself in 1994, at his home in Seattle. A bench in a park in Seattle's Leschi neighborhood, as well as several sites in Olympia, also still attract hundreds of Cobain's fans every year.

Bellamy Pailthorp covers the environment for KNKX with an emphasis on climate justice, human health and food sovereignty. She enjoys reporting about how we will power our future while maintaining healthy cultures and livable cities. Story tips can be sent to