During an extended interview for the Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck DVD, Courtney Love revealed that she tried to convince Nirvana to not release “Smells Like Teen Spirit” as the lead single for Nevermind.
“Alex McLeod, who was the road manager, goes, ‘You guys are the most requested song on KROQ.’ I was the one that earlier had told all of them, Dave, Krist, and Kurt: ‘Don’t put out Smells Like Teen Spirit, put out In Bloom, it’s a better song!’ I swear to God, I made an impassioned whole speech about it, ‘It’s a better song, don’t put out Smells Like Teen Spirit first!’
Obviously, I was wrong, but “Smells Like Teen Spirit” was getting super big requests at KROQ, and Kurt didn’t know what that meant, he didn’t even know what that meant, he didn’t even know what I meant. I was such a scenester that he had to go to Dave Grohl and say, ‘Why is Calvin calling his band Courtney Love?’ Dave’s like, ‘You don’t know who Courtney Love is?’ Because I was a well known scenester, if me and Jennifer Finch from L7 came to see your band, your band was on the radar. If Jennifer flashed you, your band was on the radar, if I stage dived, your band was on the radar. So we were kind of very much hanging out with the Peppers.”