Nirvana's First Show Revealed in Newly Discovered Photos

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Photographs from Nirvana’s first public performance in March 1987 have come to light.

The photos belong to Tony Poukkula, who grew up with Nirvana founder Kurt Cobain and hosted the band’s first show in his basement.

Poukkula’s 19-year-old daughter, Maggie, found the images while thumbing through her father’s copies of biographies of Cobain and Nirvana. She subsequently shared three snapshots on Twitter with the caption, “Pictures of my dad and Kurt Cobain playing together back in the day.”

The show was held in Raymond, Washington, about half an hour from Cobain’s hometown of Aberdeen. At the time, Nirvana consisted of Cobain, bassist Krist Novoselic and drummer Aaron Burckhard. Poukkula also performed with the group that night on a pair of Led Zeppelin covers.

Poukkula had shared the photos with his daughter previously, but at the time she was unaware of their historical significance.

“I had no idea that those were during Nirvana’s first concert,” Poukkula tells Rolling Stone. “I didn't realize it was such a historical thing. I thought they were just cool pictures of my dad and Kurt jamming together.”

The night’s show included covers of Led Zeppelin’s “How Many More Times” and “Heartbreaker,” the recording of which appeared on the 2004 box set With the Lights Out. Nirvana also played early versions of their songs “Aero Zeppelin,” “Mexican Seafood,” “Pen Cap Chew,” “Hairspray Queen,” “Spank Thru” and “If You Must.” The recording of “If You Must” is presented in the video below (audio only).

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