Thought of by many as the most iconic rock track of all time, Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit is the song that ignited the 90’s grunge craze all over the globe.
We’re sure you already know what it sounds like, but what you may not be sure of is how the track came about…
What does Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna have to do with Nirvana’s Smells Like Teen Spirit? A whole lot, it turns out…
In an incredible new animation by Drew Christie of Kalakala Animation, narrator T-Bone Burnett tells the story of the iconic 1991 song. According to the clip, Smells Like Teen Spirit was born out of a drunken night with Bikini Kill’s Kathleen Hanna while Kurt Cobain was dating Bikini Kill’s drummer Tobi Vail.
Cobain and Hanna would down a bottle of Canadian Club and proceed to vandalise a pro-life teen centre. After returning to Cobain’s apartment, the legendary Nirvana vocalist would pass out. However, Hanna’s appetite for vandalism had not yet been vandalised.
On Cobain’s wall, she would sprawl “Kurt Cobain Smells Like Teen Spirit” – a reference to Tobi Vail’s antiperspirant called Teen Spirit. The phrase was a reference to Cobain sleeping with Vail, and would go on to inspire one of the most recognisable songs in music history.
Do yourself a favour and watch the clip above.