Dave Grohl Recalls Working On Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’


Dave Grohl has recalled working on Nirvana's "Smell Like Teen Spirit." While discussing the song at NME's Nevermind at 30, he said, “I remember writing ‘Teen Spirit’ in our rehearsal space, and I liked the riff that Kurt [Cobain] came up with because it’s percussive.  Those muted, stabbing strums in between the chords really leant to the pattern of the drum riff.” 

He said that the band was writing a new song "everyday," adding,  “Of course, no-one had any psychic foresight to imagine that [Teen Spirit] would go on to do what it did. We just f*ckin’ rocked it in a little rehearsal space that was like a barn.”

Although he "didn't know what the lyrics were" he said that he "realized the power of the song" once Nirvana took it into the studio.

He said, "I think everyone was more focused on songs like "In Bloom" or "Lithium" or "Breed." Nobody paid too much attention to "Teen Spirit" while we were recording it. We just thought it was another cool song for the record."