LIVE NIRVANA SESSIONS HISTORY November 16 & 17, 1993 - SST Inc., Rehearsal facility, Weehawken, NJ, US View in Google Maps

  • NIRVANA
    • Cobain, Kurt (vocals, guitar)
    • Grohl, Dave (drums, backing vocals)
    • Novoselic, Krist (bass)
    • Smear, Pat (guitar)
  • Goldston, Lori (cello)
  • Kirkwood, Cris (bass, backing vocals)
  • Kirkwood, Curt (guitar)
  • MacLeod, Alex (tour manager)
  • Mason, Jeff (production manager)
  • Nase, Kelly (tour accountant)
  • Sasic, Susanne (lighting designer)
  • Overbay, Craig (front of house engineer)
  • Beveridge, Ian (monitor engineer)
  • Swink, Ed (stage manager)
  • Swanson, Jimmy (drum technician)
  • Vincent, Jim (guitar technician)
  • Duncan, John (guitar technician)
  • Bailey, Earnie (guitar technician)
  • Meiss, Troy (Meat Puppets' guitar technician)
  • [?] Pennyroyal Tea
  • [?] Jesus Wants Me For A Sunbeam
  • [?] Screen
  • [?] Old Age
  • [?] Plateau
  • [?] Lake Of Fire
  • [?] Been A Son
  • [?] Marigold
  • [?] Molly's Lips
  • [?] All Apologies
  • [?] Dumb
  • [?] On A Plain
  • [?] Something In The Way
  • [?] Where Did You Sleep Last Night?
  • [?] Here She Comes Now
  • [?] others?

A recording is known to exist, but is not circulating.

Rehearsals for NIRVANA's MTV Unplugged set began on November 16th, at the SST Inc. rehearsal facility in New Jersey. (1) Ideas for songs and arrangements were bandied about over the course of the two days. In 2002, NIRVANA guitar technician, Earnie Bailey, provided Nirvana Fan Club owner, Rasmus Holmen, with a scanned list of songs apparently considered on the 17th. (2)

Six songs are listed on the left hand column of Bailey's document: Penny Royal [Tea], Jesus [Wants Me For A Sunbeam], Screen, Old Age, Plateau and Lake Of Fire. The first two items are asterisked, possibly denoting their inclusion in the final setlist. The handwriting does not seem characteristic of Cobain, Novoselic or Grohl. Screen is a completely unknown title and no other references to it are known. (2) The right hand column lists eight songs: ??? Son [obscured; presumably Been A Son, and later scribbled out], Marigold, Molly's Lips [crossed out], All Apologies [crossed out], Dumb, On A Plain, Something In The Way and Where Did You Sleep Last Night?. The last four songs are asterisked, again possibly denoting selection for the concert. (2) Cellist, Lori Goldston, was disappointed when Molly's Lips got scrapped, I was sorry to see that go, she lamented. It's a really fun song to play. I think Been A Son was also talked about at some point. (3)

The Meat Puppets' Cris and Curt Kirkwood found they spent most days at the SST Inc. rehearsal facility sitting around waiting. Additionally, the brothers were warned by NIRVANA's management to refrain from marijuana around Cobain; this irked them slightly, as Cobain was consistently late for rehearsal and was obviously high. He would show up looking like the apparition of Jacob Marley, cracked Curt Kirkwood, all bound up in flannel, in a cutting-up-a-deer hat. He looked like a little, old farmer. He thought this disguise would make him fit in with the locals in New York. (4)

The Meat Puppets' guitar tech, Troy Meiss, remembers hearing a number of songs in rehearsals that didn't make the final show, including a cover of the Velvet Underground's Here She Comes Now. The best song that Nirvana did that they did not play on Unplugged was Here She Comes Now by the Velvet Underground. I looked at Cobain - he had back problems. He had scoliosis, and he was sitting in a metal chair, and he was smoking a cigarette with… what do you call those things, a cigarette holder? He was wearing a green cardigan sweater, he was hunched over, and I'll never forget [him] putting the cigarette down and going [sings lyrics to Here She Comes Now]. (5)

  1. Sproul, Kris, 1999. Nirvana Live Guide, [online] Available at: http://www.nirvanaguide.com.
  2. Holmen, Rasmus, 2002. Nirvana Fan Club, [online] Available at: http://www.nirvanaclub.com.
  3. Gaar, Gillian G., 1997. Verse Chorus Verse: The Recording History Of Nirvana, Goldmine, [online] Available at: http://www.nirvanaclub.com/articles/02.14.97.html.
  4. Cross, Charles R., 2001. Heavier Than Heaven. Hodder & Stoughton, London.
  5. Prato, Greg, 2012. Too High To Die: Meet The Meat Puppets. Lulu.

© Alex Roberts. August 28, 2011