During the early 2000's Axis Video was in the middle of the music world filming the Dynasty of Darkness series. We met with many bands for inclusion on the series, some made the cut while others did not. Over the course of several years we filmed and interviewed dozens upon dozens of bands on the East Coast and from around the world and witnessed and heard some pretty outrageous stories concerning many topics. There were a few internationally recognized bands that wished to be included but due to contracts and record label restrictions they could not.
Before and after the shows we hung out with the bands in their dressing rooms and partook in the chaos. We saw the beer, the drugs, the groupies.....you name it and it happened behind the stage. During this time I was obviously focused on securing the bands, filming and getting the proper releases filled out and coordinating our team to get the DVDs complete. So some of the banter and talk went in one ear and out the other and I never put much stock into it. One of the conversations that came up with a few of the bands while backstage and drinking was the speculation of who killed Kurt Cobain.
Since his death in 1994 there have been ongoing and various conspiracy theories as to what really happened to Kurt. Many websites, blogs and documentaries have been dedicated to getting to the bottom of what occurred. There also have been petitions to reopen the case to investigate further and for the Seattle police department to release the images on undeveloped rolls of film taken at the death scene.
(There is a plethora of information below, but of course some items had to be skipped due to the fact it would become redundant with other information already surrounding this case. We urge you to read the text below in full, look at the photos, click the links and watch the associated movies to get the full effect. Draw your own conclusions and feel free to leave comments.)
THE FATEFUL DAY:
On April 8th 1994 Kurt Cobain was found dead in his Seattle home, initially his death was ruled a suicide, using a shotgun to the face. It is estimated by the coroner that he died on April 5th and his body laid undetected for three days. Kurt's body was discovered by Gary Smith, a contractor hired to install a security system in Cobain's home.
Dave Grohl concerning Cobain's death:
"... probably the worst thing that has happened to me in my life. I remember the day after that I woke up and I was heartbroken that he was gone. I just felt like, "Okay, so I get to wake up today and have another day and he doesn't.""
Dave Grohl Drummer of Nirvana, Singer of Foo Fighters
Singer for the grunge band Nirvana, thought to either have committed suicide by self inflicted gunshot (the official report) or have been murdered in his house. Cobain's death certificate stated that his death was a result of a "contact perforating shotgun wound to the head" and concluded that his death was a suicide. The report estimated that Cobain died on Tuesday April 5, 1994.
Net Worth: $100 million (according to Celebrity Net Worth)
Wife of Kurt Cobain, singer for the band Hole and thought to have possible hired someone to kill Kurt.
Net Worth: $150 million (according to Celebrity Net Worth)
Drummer and singer for the rape rock band The Mentors. Some think he was hired by Courtney Love to murder Kurt. He claimed she approached him and offered $50,000 to get the deed done. Upon completing a lie detector test he passed with a 99.91% certainty that he was telling the truth. Noted, his claims were captured on film which appear in this article also.
Net Worth: not known, but probably not much
A member of the band "Kill Allen Wrench" and thought to have actually killed Kurt in the place of El Duce. From time to time posts cryptic messages concerning his possible guilt on social media. Former MMA fighter.
Net Worth: not known
|Allen Wrench from Kill Allen Wrench|
Michael Cali Thornhill DeWitt:
Cali Thornhill DeWitt is a Los Angeles artist, photographer, director, designer, and blogger that also runs the record label Teenage Teardrops. One of the main suspects in Cobain's death, according to Tom Grant. Longtime friend of Courtney. Had a job as the male nanny for Cobain's daughter, traveled with them, and lived in their Seattle home. Was nowhere to be found the days Kurt was missing until showing up in L.A. to talk to Courtney on April 7th, a day before Kurt's body was found. Was also in Rome when Kurt had the Rohypnol/champagne overdose accident.
Net Worth: not known
|Cali Thornhill DeWitt|
The private detective hired by Courtney Love to investigate Kurt's disappearance. Former L.A. Sheriff's Detective, Security Consultant, Beverly Hills Private Investigator, Central Coast radio talk show host and author. His findings and take on the death of Kurt are featured in the film, Soaked in Bleach
Net Worth: not known
|Tom Grant Private Investigator|
Kurt's best friend. He purchased the shotgun Kurt was found with before Kurt left for rehab, not after like Courtney told the media and police. Says Kurt was not suicidal after he got back from Rome, and he would not have purchased the shotgun for him if he was.
Net Worth: not known
Bass player for Courtney's band Hole. Died two months after Kurt on June 16th 1994. Had a U-Haul packed to leave Hole, Courtney and Seattle the next morning. Was found dead locked in the bathroom of her apartment of an apparent heroin overdose. Similarities between the way she and Kurt died, as well as how the Seattle police (mis)handled both cases, have raised questions.
Net Worth: not known
There was always the finger pointing at Courtney Love that she wanted Kurt dead and offered $50,000 to have him killed. Some speculate that she approached El Duce (Eldon Hoke) from the band The Mentors to do the job. Even El Duce himself claimed that she did. In an interview El Duce stated that he declined and passed the offer to his friend and then he slipped up and mentioned the name Allen, which many pegged as the infamous Allen Wrench.
|Allen Wrench with Leonard Nimoy|
An account Karush Sepedjian stated that occurred outside the Rock Shop in which he managed, between Courtney Love and El Duce:
Courtney Love: "El, I need a favor of you. My old man's been a real asshole lately, I need you to blow his fucking head off."
El Duce: "Are you serious"?
Courtney Love: "Yeah, I'll give you $50,000 to blow his fucking head off."
El Duce: "I'm serious if you are".
Courtney Love: "Where can I reach you"?
El Duce: "You can reach me here".
Pulled from "Kurt Cobain Death Discussion" group on Facebook:
Audio of El Duce naming Allen Wrench
"This sound clip of El Duce's interview with Rocket was recorded the night before his death right before the last Mentors show. Luckily, El Duce decided to give the full name of Kurt's killer for the first and only time on that night. The odd thing is that the only place this can be found is buried in the MP3 section on the KILLALLENWRENCH "band" website. It is like Allen Wrench wants to get caught. He even admitted to killing Kurt and described details only El Duce's killer would know in "Love and Death," by Wallace and Halperin. El Duce planned to cooperate with a joint SPD/LAPD investigation, but did not live to do so. However, the clerk at the store that Courtney solicited El Duce at, Karush Sepedjian, is alive and in hiding and he heard everything El Duce heard. He was also asked if he would kill Kurt when Courtney could not reach El Duce for the hit and was probably the one to give her Allen Wrench's name in El Duce's absentia. Sepedjian needs to be re questioned because he knows a lot and is either living in fear or part of the conspiracy."
|El Duce from The Mentors|
Some video background info on The Mentors
El Duce and Love went into the store that Karush Sepedjian managed, "El was kicking it out on the bench in front of the store and she came up. I overheard her saying, "Can you handle doing this? Can you get this done? What do you want for it"? They were talking about knocking off Kurt Cobain. Then El brought her inside and said to me quietly, "She offered me $50,000".
Later on when Kurt's body was found, Sepedjian said "I was like Whoa! I wonder if she actually did pay some sucker to blow off his head"?
El Duce said; "Maybe she got somebody else. I think Kurt was getting ready to divorce her for adultery charges. She had to have him whacked right away so she could get the money."
Note, that if Kurt and Courtney did divorce, the best she could hope for was half of what he had, but if Kurt was to die, she would get one hundred percent of everything that he had.
Excerpt from Broomfield's film, "Kurt and Courtney"
Divine Brown's Pimp: "There he is, El Duce."
Broomfield: "Where? Oh yes."
Pimp: "There he is right there. This is him, El Duce."
El Duce: "Yaaargh. Where's the booze?"
Pimp: "He's just perverted!"
El Duce: "Yeah, a warped er, intoxicator, most of the time."
Broomfield: "So you er, did some deal with Courtney right?"
El Duce: "Yes."
El Duce: "Right, but er, I told Alan, (looks up sheepishly towards Divine Brown's pimp)- I mean er, my friend who (starts laughing) aah, I'll let the FBI catch him, but er, (laughs) that's just the way it's done. End of Story (laughs again). Hey 50 grand does a lot of talking. You buy me a beer I might do some more talking, (laughs, looks into the camera, and after a short pause) Yaaaaargh!"
El Duce's lie detector results
On March 6th 1996, El Duce underwent and passed a lie detector test administered by Dr. Edward Gelb, a leading polygraph examiner. He administered a polygraph test to O.J. Simpson two days after the murder of his wife.
Concerning the results of a lie detector test:
To the question "Did Courtney Love ask you to kill Kurt Cobain?" Duce's positive response showed a 99.91% certainty that he was telling the truth, which falls into the category "beyond possibility of deception". Duce also scored the same when the question was repeated. When asked the question "Were you offered $50,000 by Courtney Love to kill Kurt Cobain?" Duce scored a slightly less impressive 99.84% score.
Karush Sepedjian took the polygraph but nodded (due to being high and under the influence) out half way through so his results could not be obtained. Some say that he did this on purpose so the truth would not get out.
El Duce of the Mentors talks about Kurt Cobain & Courtney Love 8-30-96
An interview with El Duce where he states Courtney wanted to pay him to kill Kurt
Photo by Yuri Lenquette who asked Kurt to pose in this manner
|Another photo of Kurt with a gun that people claims supports the suicide theory|
There are many opinions and discrepancies in the case of what happened to Kurt, many can be viewed through the film, "Soaked in Bleach" which follows private investigator Tom Grant as he investigates the case.
Tom Grant, a private investigator once hired by Courtney Love, reveals his take on the death of Kurt Cobain in the film Soaked in Bleach.
1. Both of them got on the wrong side of Courtney Love.
2. Both of them were a threat to her.
3. Both died under mysterious circumstances.
4. Neither of them was suicidal. (According to their friends, although Kurt seems to have express suicidal thoughts in his writings and some of his songs)
EL DUCE'S (ELDON HOKE) DEATH:
Hoke's final musical performance was given on Friday, April 18, 1997 at Al's Bar in downtown Los Angeles. The next day at 5pm an unknown man, some claim was Allen Wrench, came to pick up El Duce, they left for the liquor store and then El Duce was found dead on the railroad tracks at 9pm in Riverside, CA after being struck by a train. There were no witnesses. Police were unable to locate the man seen with Duce that afternoon. So you see where this speculation is leading?
El Duce's covered dead body
The coroner's office gave the official cause of El Duce's death as "misadventure".
Some speculate that El Duce did not have the stomach to kill Cobain and since he was about to go on tour with his band, this was the perfect out and excuse not to kill him. It is believed that Allen Wrench took up the offer to kill Cobain in El Duce's absence. Allen went from being constantly poor to having money and buying a house and a sports car. Was this from money Courtney paid him? On social media Allen himself leaves teasing messages regarding Kurt's death.
Many think that Allen also killed El Duce's since he was talking to the press and "accidentally" mentioned Allen's name in an interview referring to Kurt's murderer.
Music journalist and friend of Duce, Al Bowman said in reference to Duce's death: "There is something very, very strange about his death. Anybody who knew El knew that you could make friends with him by offering to buy him a drink. He had a problem with alcohol." When asked if he thought El Duce was suicidal he replied: “No way. He was all excited about his upcoming tour. He was in good spirits. He didn't kill himself. I'm convinced this has something to do with Kurt Cobain."
LYRICS FORESHADOW SUICIDE?
Many people look at the suicide angle of Kurt and immediately reference the following song.
COME AS YOU ARE lyrics:
"When I swear that I don't have a gun
No I don't have a gun
No I don't have a gun"
..and we all know that Kurt obviously had a gun.
Come As You Are Music Video
Courtney on the Howard Stern Show in regards as to why she never sued the people accusing her of having Kurt Cobain murdered:
"I am past liable you know what I mean. Because there is this whole thing in America where, like, you are liable proof because you have had so much crap said about you. It is totally awful. And the second thing is apparently -- and I haven't seen it, I didn't want to do that to myself -- and you know there is 6 year old involved in this, you know what I mean. Who never did anything to anybody but ..."
Courtney on the Howard Stern show
On the flip side of all the conspiracies stating that Courtney had Kurt killed, there is the original report that Kurt did commit suicide, it is no new knowledge that Kurt was battling his own demons with drugs, depression and the new found rapid rise to fame. The following films go into much detail that showcase Kurt's struggles and battles along with depictions pulled from Kurt's personal writings.
Kurt and Courtney: A look into Cobain's relationship with Love. Kurt and Courtney
Cobain: Montage of Heck: An intimate look into the rise and fall of Kurt Cobain within Nirvana, Pulled from personal videos and photos provided by the friends and family of Kurt.
Kurt Cobain's Suicide Note
(Please take notice of the sudden jump in font and handwriting in the last section of the note):
SUICIDE NOTE TEXT
Speaking from the tongue of an experienced simpleton who obviously would rather be an emasculated, infantile complain-ee. This note should be pretty easy to understand.
All the warnings from the punk rock 101 courses over the years, since my first introduction to the, shall we say, ethics involved with independence and the embracement of your community has proven to be very true. I haven't felt the excitement of listening to as well as creating music along with reading and writing for too many years now. I feel guilty beyond words about these things.
For example when we're back stage and the lights go out and the manic roar of the crowds begins., it doesn't affect me the way in which it did for Freddie Mercury, who seemed to love, relish in the the love and adoration from the crowd which is something I totally admire and envy. The fact is, I can't fool you, any one of you. It simply isn't fair to you or me. The worst crime I can think of would be
to rip people off by faking it and pretending as if I'm having 100% fun. Sometimes I feel as if I should have a punch-in time clock before I walk out on stage. I've tried everything within my power to appreciate it (and I do,God, believe me I do, but it's not enough). I appreciate the fact that I and we have affected and entertained a lot of people. It must be one of those narcissists who only appreciate
things when they're gone. I'm too sensitive. I need to be slightly numb in order to regain the enthusiasms I once had as a child.
On our last 3 tours, I've had a much better appreciation for all the people I've known personally, and as fans of our music, but I still can't get over the frustration, the guilt and empathy I have for everyone. There's good in all of us and I think I simply love people too much, so much that it makes me feel too fucking sad. The sad little, sensitive, unappreciative, Pisces, Jesus man. Why don't you just enjoy it? I don't know!
I have a goddess of a wife who sweats ambition and empathy and a daughter who reminds me too much of what i used to be, full of love and joy, kissing every person she meets because everyone is good and will do her no harm. And that terrifies me to the point to where I can barely function. I can't stand the thought of Frances becoming the miserable, self-destructive, death rocker that I've become.
I have it good, very good, and I'm grateful, but since the age of seven, I've become hateful towards all humans in general. Only because it seems so easy for people to get along that have empathy. Only because I love and feel sorry for people too much I guess.
Thank you all from the pit of my burning, nauseous stomach for your letters and concern during the past years. I'm too much of an erratic, moody baby! I don't have the passion anymore, and so remember, it's better to burn out than to fade away.
Peace, love, empathy.
Frances and Courtney, I'll be at your alter.
Please keep going Courtney, for Frances.
For her life, which will be so much happier without me.
I LOVE YOU, I LOVE YOU!"
(NOTE: Boddah was Kurt's childhood imaginary friend that was blamed for any wrong doing.)
In July of 2015 Love and Frances urge the judge to not release the death scene photos of Kurt.
Courtney Love and daughter Frances Bean Cobain are trying to block the release of death-scene photos which will allegedly prove the Nirvana frontman was murdered.
Richard Lee, who runs a public access TV show in Seattle, sued the city and its police department over the material which he says will show the singer did not die after shooting himself in the head.
The city feels that the photos and records should stay private for the family's sake as they have been through enough.
Hole singer Love, Kurt's 51-year-old widow, and their only child have written to the court about the impact it would have on their lives if the graphic snaps were released to the public.
Courtney Love and daughter 'urge judge not to release death-scene photos of Kurt'
Billy Corgan, singer of The Smashing Pumpkins hosting a Smashing Pumpkins VIP Q&A session in Morrison, Colorado, when someone in the audience brought up the recent documentary, Soaked In Bleach, which alleges that Love, Corgan’s ex-girlfriend, murdered her then-husband, Cobain.
Fan: So, I recently saw Soaked in Bleach, and the other one, the HBO one. I feel like there’s an unnecessary rivalry (with) Manson, because I like all kinds of music. I talk to some friends and they’re like, ‘Oh, I hate so and so.’ Do you think Courtney killed Kurt?
Corgan: Are you legitimately asking me this question here?
Fan: If you care to answer it.
Corgan: No, I don’t care to answer it because I think it’s-
Fan: Anything in that realm you care to elaborate on?
Corgan: But what does that have to do with me?
Fan: Um, I don’t know, just because this is similar, some people-
Corgan: You started out by talking about inter-band rivalry, and then we go to conspiracy theory.
|Billy Corgan and Courtney Love|
"Well, I can’t really speculate other than what he said to me, which was, he wasn’t at all happy about it, success to him seemed like, I think, a brick wall. There was nowhere else to go but down, it was too artificial for him, and he wasn’t an artificial person at all. He was actually, two weeks after he died, he was supposed to come here and he wanted to record a bunch of Leadbelly covers. It was kind of in secret, because, I mean, people would definitely not allow him to do that. You also have to wonder, he was a billion-dollar industry at the time, and if the industry had any idea at all of him wishing or wanting to get out, they couldn’t have allowed that, you know, in life, because if he was just to get out of the scene, he’d be totally forgotten, but if he was to die, he’d be immortalized."
So if Courtney did have Kurt murdered..what would her motivation be? Possibly the future promise of close to 1 billion in royalties?
You can search all the available information provided on the internet and research the facts, evidence, speculation and theories and then make up your mind as to what fate Kurt actually met. A depressed individual that committed suicide? Or was he the victim of a vindictive and manipulative Courtney who had him murdered?
Cobain's death certificate
May 8th 2014
According to www.Pitchfork.com (Jeremy Gordon) Courtney Love Confirms She Wrote the Note Found in Kurt Cobain's Wallet at Death Scene, "Obviously I wrote it – don't you guys understand sarcasm?"
In April of 2014, the Seattle Police Department released dozens of photos from the scene where Kurt Cobain's body was found. Of particular interest was a handwritten note found in Cobain's wallet that appeared to make fun of Cobain's marriage vows to his wife, Courtney Love. The note said, "Do you Kurt Cobain take Courtney Michelle Love to be your lawful shredded wife even when she's a bitch with zits and siphoning all yr money for doping and whoring..."
After some attention, Cobain biographer Charles R. Cross came out and claimed that the note was written by Love herself as a private joke. Now, Love has confirmed her authorship in an interview with The Guardian. "Obviously I wrote it – don't you guys understand sarcasm?" she said. She also disparaged the controversy the note stirred, especially amongst conspiracy theorists who continue to look for evidence that Love was directly involved in Cobain's death. "It endangers me, and it endangers [Love's daughter] Frances," she said.
On Aug 22nd 2015, Courtney posted the following on her Instagram and Twitter profiles:
courtneylove: "Makes me feel so sad. Our baby is all grown up now. Jesus Kurt look at her face, what on earth were you thinking..⁉⁉ God I miss you, we all miss you #family #memories #turnbacktime #lovehim"
The photo featured herself, Kurt and baby Frances. Of course this sparks comments from supporters, fans and people that feel that she had Kurt killed.
Below is the transcript per Richard Lee pertaining to the possibility that Kurt's body was mutilated:
***Interesting side story, for her Sweet 16, Courtney Love threw Frances a suicide themed party that cost over $300k. SUICIDE SWEET 16 PARTY***
Hopefully this article along with the supplemental material in the form of photos, links to other sites, the videos and movie references will shed a little light into what/who actually caused Kurt's death. We also have the hopes that his case will reopen and the investigation will be conducted properly.
(Chris Chaos is a long time resident of South Jersey who once again resides in and writes from Gloucester City, New Jersey. He is a filmmaker, a business owner, writer, urban explorer and investigator of the odd and weird, a proud parent, happily taken and a connoisseur of hot wings. Chris can be reached at AxisVideo@aol.com)