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Courtney Fires Back

"Family of Kurt Cobain" pens missive criticizing Novoselic and Grohl

December 18, 2001 12:00 AM ET

Less than a week after former Nirvana members Krist Novoselic and Dave Grohl filed a lawsuit against Courtney Love seeking to oust her from Nirvana L.L.C. -- the partnership formed in 1997 to manage the affairs of the band following the 1994 suicide of frontman Kurt Cobain -- and wrote an open letter to Nirvana fans calling Love "irrational, mercurial, self-centered, unmanageable, inconsistent and unpredictable," Love has written a letter of her own.

The new missive, attributed to "the Family of Kurt Cobain," reads in part: "Kurt Cobain was Nirvana. He named the band, hired its members, played guitar, wrote the songs, fronted the band onstage and in interviews and took responsibility for the band's business decisions. [Cobain] wrote almost all of Nirvana's music. Over 93% of the band's song copyrights are in his name. There is a large trove of unreleased tapes that deserve a proper release, tapes that include several songs that neither Krist nor Dave have ever heard."

It is some of the unreleased material that sparked the conflict between Love and the surviving members of the band. A forty-five-song Nirvana box set had been planned for release in October to coincide with the ten-year anniversary of the group's breakthrough album, Nevermind. But Love was granted an injunction blocking the release of the set, which has been postponed indefinitely. In June, Love attempted to oust Novoselic and Grohl from Nirvana, L.L.C.

According to Love's letter, Cobain refused to enter into a partnership with Grohl and Novoselic during his lifetime and that his family was coerced into signing a partnership agreement after his death.

"We look forward to many years of great releases from Kurt and Nirvana," the letter concludes. "We wish Krist and Dave great success in their current careers and hope they will soon leave control of Kurt's legacy to his rightful heirs."

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