Drain your bank account and grab a Ouija board, and there’s an off chance you might end up making a connection with one of the most influential figures in the history of rock ’n’ roll. Or, even better, realize that the idea of owning property in this part of the world isn’t the world’s saddest pipe dream.
One of the childhood homes of Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain has just come on the market in Montesano, Washington, population 4,000 in the last U.S. census count.
The future grunge icon moved into the home with his father in 1978 after his parents split. One remarriage later he was joined by a stepmother and her two kids, causing him to sensibly flee in 1982 to a trailer owned by his grandparents.
That drama, of course, casts a different light on the lyrics “That legendary divorce is such a bore” in “Serve the Servants”. But speaks volumes, one supposes, about “I tried hard to have a father/But instead I had a dad.”
The Montesano home is listed at $354,560 in Canadian dollars. And if you live on the side of the border, then you’re well aware that won’t even get you a two-bedroom condo in Chilliwack.
While marketing the property as a previous residence of Kurt Cobain would have been a no-brainer sales strategy, real estate agent Colt Fairley told Rolling Stone that the building’s history only became known after the listing went up.
“None of us knew it was until the photographer [Alicia Tisdale] took a picture of it,” he said. “She knows Aberdeen pretty well. She was like, ‘Oh my god, this is Kurt Cobain’s house.’ His dad, Donald, tried to make the entire house into a ship.”
Where Vancouverites buy old homes to knock them down and turn them into duplexes, our neighbours south of the border have more appreciation for their history. This past summer another of Cobain’s former residences was designated a heritage-listed landmark after being restored to the way it looked during the singer’s childhood. The home’s owner plans to offer tours of the house next spring.
As for you, let’s face it: unless your Lotto Max numbers come up today, the chances of you ever being able to buy a place in Metro Vancouver are slim and none. That makes the current Cobain-home listing in Montesano doubly-appealing. Don’t forget your flannel shirts, Daniel Johnston T, and, most importantly of all, Ouija board.
Here's a selection of other photos from the listing.