Billy Corgan Reveals What Kurt Cobain Would ‘Refuse’


Smashing Pumpkins frontman Billy Corgan recently claimed that he believes Kurt Cobain would refuse to join Instagram if he were alive in 2020. Alternative Nation transcribed his remarks from a fan Q&A. Corgan ripped ‘fake news’ reporter Anderson Cooper yesterday for being ‘guilty.’

A fan asked, “What do you imagine Kurt Cobain’s Instagram would look like today?” Corgan answered, “He’d be wise enough o not have one, I figure.”

Corgan also discussed the process of writing the new Smashing Pumpkins album CYR on Apple Music with Zane Lowe, “I think it starts with … I’ll try to be succinct because it’s something I could go on about for a half hour. Because I know, well, I know, at least from what I know, a lot of musicians want to understand my process. So I talk about this a lot in my Instagram account. When you’re young and you don’t have anything to lose, you make very simple binary choices. Riff A is more exciting than riff B. Okay.

When you’ve done something for 30 years, like anybody else, you assume that whatever comes out of your mouth or whatever you play has a certain kind of unique quality because it’s been proven by the marketplace. You’re still there, right? But if you go back to your 20 year old self, your 20 year old self doesn’t care about any of that. Your 20 year old self only goes, ‘Riff A is more exciting than riff B.’

So I would have a riff, ‘CYR,’ the single ‘CYR’ is a perfect example. It was originally a guitar riff, a heavy … And we started with the heavy guitar riff. And somewhere along the way, we said, ‘Well, let’s try it this other way to see if there’s something there.’ So I got a big fat synth going. And we looked at each other and I go, ‘Well, that’s more exciting.’ So then this becomes a series of binary choices. There isn’t a devil sitting on your shoulder going, ‘Yeah, but the Smashing Pumpkins fans, they expect to hear that guitar now. Don’t you forget.’

You go back to the primal space of binary choices. If somebody is not a musician listening to this, it’s as simple as if you’ve ever had feelings for two people, you have to make a decision because it’s unfair to the one person. And if you’re really in love with the other, you got to kind of make a move. Well, that’s kind of what it’s like. You have to kind of go where your heart tells you to go.

And so on an album like this, I just went where my heart told me to go. There was nobody sort of standing there saying, ‘You can’t do that because …’ And by the way, I like to point out for the naysayer crowd, I have done a lot rock music. You and I have interviewed about some of the rock music I’ve done over the last seven years. I don’t remember any mountains moving. And I don’t remember anything super magical happening.

Yeah, the albums were well received generally, people like them. But nothing magical was happening. And at some point, I’m a wizard. I go, ‘Wait, I still got lightning bolts in the hands. I can still do this, but how did I do it before? Oh, I just made binary choices. I just made really simple binary choices, A or B, A or B.’ And you do that over the course of a year and you kind of get used to it. You forget that you’re supposed to hook up the fuzz pedal or whatever. You just get into a groove of like, ‘Oh, this sounds good.'”