Watch Kurt Cobain Pay Tribute to River Phoenix at Nirvana’s Last L.A. Show

By Scott T. Sterling

Los Angeles filmmaker Dave Markey is well-versed in the subject of Nirvana, having traveled with the band during a European tour opening for Sonic Youth in the early ’90s, which led to the excellent 1993 documentary, 1991: The Year Punk Broke.

Now, Markey has opened his personal video stash to release a 15-minute clip of Nirvana performing at the Los Angeles Forum during what would be the band’s final show in L.A. before the tragic death of frontman Kurt Cobain in April of 1994.

The clip (via CraveOnline) finds Nirvana taking the stage to enthusiastic cheers from the audience, with Cobain dedicating the band’s cover of the Vaselines’ “Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam” — recast as “Jesus Doesn’t Want Me for a Sunbeam” by Nirvana — to late actor River Phoenix, who had died only two months before the show.

“20 years ago tonight (December 30, 1993) I stood on Kurt’s side of the stage at my hometown’s Los Angeles Forum and captured the last set I would see of this band,” Markey wrote on YouTube. “A band that I had worked with, toured with; people that I would call my friends. A band that both the world and myself really loved (can’t really say this has happened since.) Within just a few short months it would sadly all be over.”

The clip also captures the band performing David Bowie‘s 1970 song “The Man Who Sold the World” as well as  “All Apologies,” the second single from Nirvana’s third and final studio release, In Utero.



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