What Makes This Song Great?™ Ep.90 Nirvana "Smells Like Teen Spirit"

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Rick Beato

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In this episode we continue to explore the Nirvana song that changed the direction of Rock music "Smells Like Teen Spirit"
Kurt Cobain - lead vocals, lead guitar
Krist Novoselic - bass
Dave Grohl - drums, backing vocals
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T P 10 саат мурун
14:18 hi Rick! What is a padgatourus? sounds like a mystical beast
douglas mccann
douglas mccann 11 саат мурун
Lets dance bowie thanks rick
TheCaptainApe 12 саат мурун
No mentoning of Patty Smith is just disgraceful
TheCaptainApe 12 саат мурун
patty is graet
kasabian1987 12 саат мурун
Hey Rick. Have you ever thought about doing a "What makes this song great" on Aphrodite's Child - The Four Horsemen.?
The Hynes Perception
The Hynes Perception 15 саат мурун
You luv it as a do lad A look at this out loud on all music a play cheers
The Hynes Perception
The Hynes Perception 15 саат мурун
Lad am pissin masel laughing through this you done well controlling yersel thru this magic
I.D. Kline
I.D. Kline Күн мурун
WOW he remembers the video coming out, that’s something special! Best I did was see them play it live at The Warfield in San Francisco two months before it was released to radio. 🙄
Nevile Dawes
Nevile Dawes Күн мурун
No one has the passion of a crazy dead genius, and that’s a bad thing
Louis Jamin
Louis Jamin Күн мурун
"You can never go wrong playing the melody" Well, in my opinion, that's almost always wrong, actually...
Jeanpaul Michell
Jeanpaul Michell Күн мурун
This video makes me realize that This song would have been great as part of the Unplugged set; the haunting melody really comes through in acoustic form.
Robert Petre
Robert Petre 2 күн мурун
Come as you are sounds dangerously similar to the 80s by Killing Joke but they never sued so never mind ha ha.
BarrySmithViolin 2 күн мурун
Well done Rick!! 🌟 A fave song of mine always and in everyway. 🌹
vai walker
vai walker 2 күн мурун
first song i learned to play on the guitar and drums and bass. and my padKontrol.
David Brown
David Brown 2 күн мурун
Rick, your treatment of this is almost as good as the song itself!!
Andrew L. Edwards
Andrew L. Edwards 3 күн мурун
Hell yea!!
lolboi 3 күн мурун
you are not muting the strings in the beginning i expected better
chillm8t 4 күн мурун
If I want to recollect on how great my high school days were, i pull up a Rick Beato WMTSG about Nirvana.
John Waters
John Waters 4 күн мурун
Weird Al not mentioned? Lol
Lucas Davi
Lucas Davi 4 күн мурун
what program do you use to isolate the sound of each instrument?
Robert Bjärmyr
Robert Bjärmyr 4 күн мурун
I would never have used "beautiful" to describe Nirvana; but I will from this moment on. Damn, those are some tasty chords and notes in there!
Toby Mattsson
Toby Mattsson 4 күн мурун
It´s the mixing that makes this a song great. No one Pop mix in the world. Andy Wallace!!!!
Krunchy Karim
Krunchy Karim 5 күн мурун
sharp 4th is tritone right
D Gates
D Gates 5 күн мурун
If you don't hear people sing with such intensity anymore, you need to check out anything done by Josh Scogin. Check out his new band, '68. Heavily influenced by Nirvana, and he sings with even more emotion and intensity!
WegrennerX 5 күн мурун
Except for the fact that this song isn’t great at all...
Nirvana 5 күн мурун
They asked kurt : what kind of advice would you give to people that wanna have a musical career? Kurt answer was : Just keep practising and dont give up. Just never give up. Play as often as you can and be really dedicated. And try to write good music, and dont worry about the material ethics that go with music. It doesn't matter what your product looks like it's what it sounds like.
Nirvana 5 күн мурун
Our little group has always been and always will until the end
Ömer Uğurlu
Ömer Uğurlu 5 күн мурун
nobody: Rick: plays a beautiful acoustic cover of the song while trying to explain theoretical stuff
Ömer Uğurlu
Ömer Uğurlu 2 күн мурун
@Frank Estrada bueno amigo
Frank Estrada
Frank Estrada 4 күн мурун
Hola como estas c:
Bill Cornwall
Bill Cornwall 6 күн мурун
If Weird Al covers a song, it’s an epic song. Smells like teen spirit is an epic song.
Willem Van Riet
Willem Van Riet 6 күн мурун
Wow what a master you are in everything!
Steve Fettuccine
Steve Fettuccine 6 күн мурун
"Why? Because it's cool!" - love it.
larry stovall
larry stovall 6 күн мурун
I know what he's doing and I'm gonna tell you what he's doing. LOL, so perfectly stated.
YJD67 7 күн мурун
A belated thanks, Rick, for deconstructing this. Kurts vocals, writing and style, all got me earlier on, but this vid brougt it home. Right in the ballpark. I broke down on the last "A denial"..... so much raw emotion bleeding out. Also this vid gave me a much better perspective on the importance of Dave Grohl in the band. Bye from the Netherlands. Jacco
Nathan Dudar
Nathan Dudar 7 күн мурун
another history lesson from uncle Rick!
John Kennedy
John Kennedy 7 күн мурун
Wow, Kurt was really good at music theory.
Daniel Vidal
Daniel Vidal 7 күн мурун
yeah yeah they are so equal like 08 gauge strings is ¨better¨ xD
Bob Messina
Bob Messina 7 күн мурун
Dave's work on the kick drum is so amazing, especially now that I hear it isolated. This song is such an epic achievement on so many levels, but the album it was part of was every bit as earth-shattering. Come As You Are, Drain You.......Damn.
Justin Smith
Justin Smith 7 күн мурун
This channel and breakdown is amazing.
Shane Elvis
Shane Elvis 7 күн мурун
The actual answer is quite literally fuck all.
Lt. Aldo Raine
Lt. Aldo Raine 8 күн мурун
God damn it Rick, i simply cannot enjoy more your musical analysis. You manage to explain something so beautifully, with extreme detail and going pretty deep in the music analysis and yet somehow you give me the feeling that even if i didnt have the musical training that i have as a classical guitarist, i would still be able to understand the meaning of your sayings. Kudos from a pedagogical perceptive.
champiforest 8 күн мурун
The isolated vocals make me cry. So much passion...
Dazed n' Confuzed
Dazed n' Confuzed 8 күн мурун
What make this song great? Cos 91 babies grew up listening it. Juzz like me 😁
Kiko Batanov
Kiko Batanov 8 күн мурун
Rick vibing to the song is just priceless.
nsc217 9 күн мурун
It’s funny about Dave Grohl because Kurt hated his drumming and wanted to get rid of him and Dave knew that and now Dave hates Kurt and despicably didn’t even bring his name up during Nirvana’s induction into the RNR Hall of Fame
James Hisself
James Hisself 10 күн мурун
"He didn't know what he was doing!" Stupid theory snobs who will never amount to anything. The Beatles didn't know what they were doing either, that's what George Martin was for.
Devon Plumley
Devon Plumley 10 күн мурун
Great Job Rick very enjoyable. It wouldn't be nearly as enjoyable if you weren't enjoying your self too!
Drawn to Fashion Illustration art Marta Madison
Drawn to Fashion Illustration art Marta Madison 10 күн мурун
They hired strippers as the cheerleaders. Nuff said. “His ear led him to the notes” and we followed. This is god given talent. You need that low verse tempo to get a rest from the intensity of the vocals on the chorus.
Vitor Gomes
Vitor Gomes 10 күн мурун
I just would like to know 1% of what he knows! When i see this man playing and talking about music, i feel smaller than a microbe!
Ochomarvo G.
Ochomarvo G. 11 күн мурун
I've always said Kurt was a genius and I'm a 57 year old blues and classic rock player. For the record, I think he did know what he was doing.
Zadra Band
Zadra Band 11 күн мурун
This song is so great! Full of rage and sadness. I miss that in nowadays music
Vitor Roma
Vitor Roma 11 күн мурун
I love how he says "and I forget" just after the solo, as if the solo made him relax, get rid of the angst even if for just a moment.
Derek Pardoe
Derek Pardoe 11 күн мурун
You know what makes this song great? Tom’s, you should let people use them when you produce.
norman howell
norman howell 12 күн мурун
I always thought nevermind was their first album .
Dimicke Le Masson
Dimicke Le Masson 12 күн мурун
This is one of my favourtie What Makes This Song Great (along with the Weak and Powerless episode). You inspired me to upload a melodic guitar cover of Smells Like Teen Spirit based on how you broke down Kurt's melody. If you by any chance have the time would love if it you gave it a view!
am74343 12 күн мурун
"Smells Like Teen Spirit" is *THE* quintissential 90's song. It ushered in the decade, and all bands of the era emulated it. I was a teenager in the 1990's when Nirvana came out, and I hated them. But now in hindsight, I've realized how truly unique they were at the time, and how they completely revolutionized the music industry during the grunge period. Cobain's tortured vocals juxtaposed with the smashing rhythm illustrated the frustration many "teens" feel on a daily basis, and that's why I think this tune became such a hit.
Thomas Wayne
Thomas Wayne 12 күн мурун
I don’t understand half the things he said half the time. But this whole video is music to my ears. Thank you. Looking forward to exploring more of this channel. Subbed.
Richard Reinertson
Richard Reinertson 12 күн мурун
Thanks so much for this analysis. Fucking Kurt Cobain, right. He was haunted and haunting.
Mike G3
Mike G3 13 күн мурун
Amazing melodic intensity. Thanks Rick.
Colin Murphy
Colin Murphy 13 күн мурун
Nice breakdown, but I this is the only Nirvana song that does nothing for me anymore. It being overplayed to death killed it for me - sad but true.
Yao Li
Yao Li 13 күн мурун
The part of isolated singing of " a Denial" made me burst into cry. Jet in my late 30s, the world is still not a comfortable place
Benji Taylor
Benji Taylor 13 күн мурун
because it's probably the greatest rock song ever?
Nic Desbias
Nic Desbias 13 күн мурун
Did anyone notice that in the very last "denial" it sounds like there is a second singer singing a comparatively short "ahh:"? It stops before Kurts voice fades out.
Nic Desbias
Nic Desbias 10 күн мурун
@ExNihilo Probably. But why?
ExNihilo 11 күн мурун
Probably an overdub
Kalamanjo 13 күн мурун
Can you do an MGK song from Tickets to my downfall? My friend really loves him and she would probably love to see how it was made
Lisa Eischens
Lisa Eischens 14 күн мурун
Wow Rick, I wish I could have just an ounce of your musical intelligence and ability to break a song down like you can. At least every time I watch you I’m gaining valuable information that will make me better at whatever I try.
Guapo Flannett
Guapo Flannett 14 күн мурун
I think he is saying, ' I deny you, I deny you.
James 14 күн мурун
love the guitar is it a 1970s model?
Darryl Le Roux
Darryl Le Roux 14 күн мурун
Rick, unfortunately that intro is half a step too high :(
parkinsontatak 14 күн мурун
Listening to Kurt's isolated vocals...
CannedCherry 14 күн мурун
I always peg that record for being the last big shift in live music style, after that its hard to say any live music had such a major shift in the music scene, sure electronic music has seen major evolution, but for me Nirvana was the last big cultural shift in mainstream live music.
Mike Jennings
Mike Jennings 15 күн мурун
You're a GREAT teacher Rick. Your enthusiasm is so infectious you have me really getting into songs I didn't even like before I watched you telling me why it's a great song (I already thought this song was great by the way, ha ha). I love knowing how things come together - movies, music, stories - and you explain things in such an easily accessible way it's a pleasure to watch. Thanks.
Dirk Fromhein
Dirk Fromhein 15 күн мурун
"Nowadays this would get cut" - indeed partially why all current music blows chunks! Has a single decent band come out in the last 10yrs? Sorry I correct myself, - The Hu ! the only interesting thing in music in the last 10yrs... and it's Mongolian Throat Singing Metal!
Dave Patel
Dave Patel 15 күн мурун
Totally engrossed in your take on this brother. Immediately subscribed :) I was in the 7th grade when this came out and bought the tape, played it non-stop until the Lithium maxi-single came out that secretly had all the lyrics. Still remember hitting that jackpot like it was yesterday.
Tamas Eke
Tamas Eke 15 күн мурун
After so many years I still get goosebumps from this song. My favorite of all time! Thanks for giving such precious insight to this one too! Love your content Rick. So inspiring!
UncannyFloyd 15 күн мурун
What the hell, I was just falling asleep
Carlos Velasquez
Carlos Velasquez 15 күн мурун
John Lennon's twist and shout vocals are a piece of cake compared to Kurt's out of this world vocals, God forgive your great sin Kurt
Lsa Lushai
Lsa Lushai 15 күн мурун
you are a true genius
Frances McCollum
Frances McCollum 15 күн мурун
Please please do "Lithium" , my favorite song, please~~~~~
Don Dee
Don Dee 15 күн мурун
Any truth to the story that a female friend wrote on the bedroom wall that KURT SMELL’S LIKE TEEN SPIRIT (DEODORANT). KURT did not know about it being a deodorant and thought she was writing a trippy nutty comment. He took it and made it his own. Thee song SEVEN NATION ARMY (SALVATION ARMY) has a likewise misunderstanding leading to a hit song.
markus808808 16 күн мурун
Ok, I get it now, it's a Neil Young's Dead Man soundtrack grunge version
igor de wit
igor de wit 16 күн мурун
You think too much.
B V 16 күн мурун
Don’t forget Weird Al’s cover
Jaona Raharison
Jaona Raharison 16 күн мурун
Hello Rick. I live in Paris (France). Saw Them when they were not know in ‘89 in France when i was into Grunge. Excellent souvenir !
andrew armington
andrew armington 16 күн мурун
hey rick.....why dont u talk about sound city!! id love to hear your take!
Mitch Gettman
Mitch Gettman 16 күн мурун
You should do WEEN song for what makes this song great
Pedro De Leon
Pedro De Leon 16 күн мурун
I have always felt that Cobain was a good guitar player but since the time period was coming out of hair metal, and extraterrestrial guitar rock, simply going back to Earth blindsided people. Kurt was simply a human poet from Earth playing simple chords.
Clint Nieves
Clint Nieves 16 күн мурун
Masters of depressing dark tones. The solo I now think is already the made melody Kurt wanted for the vocals. Sad to see folks spitting nails like Cobain and Cornell kill them selves. Gives me goosebumps knowing I’m listening to a dead man
RTL 17 күн мурун
Great song and the drums make the song just as much as the guitar, bass, lyrics and singing....Probably the best grunge alternative song ever!!
Stephen Cameron
Stephen Cameron 17 күн мурун
it's a repeated tritone in the base which keeps out of out our comfort. The aolean covers for the tritone.
Stephen Cameron
Stephen Cameron 17 күн мурун
I think the base is outlining a tritone in the intro? no? That's a-tonic!
pato sandoval
pato sandoval 17 күн мурун
kurt had nothing to do with the 13th aeolian
Sarahtonin 17 күн мурун
I heard Weird Al's version, "Smells Like Nirvana," before I heard the actual Nirvana song, and I didn't realize it was a Weird Al parody. I just thought it was a great song. I loved both versions after I heard Nirvana, but "Smells Like Nirvana" is still my favorite Weird Al video. 😁
Eurostar Namastar
Eurostar Namastar 17 күн мурун
There were many better bands in NY than Nirvana
Bubb 17 күн мурун
People who call people basic for liking this song need to watch this video
Block Prospects
Block Prospects 18 күн мурун
I remember the day this song came out. It was biblical.
Ahmad Salah
Ahmad Salah 18 күн мурун
If you are still waiting for jesus,, you already missed him. That's just such godly perfection in an extremely imperfect way,, its just unattainable by human. Fuck me...
hockeycox07 18 күн мурун
"Kurt didn't know what he was doing" Yeah, but doesn't that make it even more impressive that he was able to do it?
ralelunar 17 күн мурун
People are just jealous that they don't have that kind of natural talent
Diana 19 күн мурун
No wonder I always found myself headbanging or responding specifically to those unique drum pauses 3:30
Patrick Sheehan
Patrick Sheehan 20 күн мурун
Growing up in the 1980s, I chose the pop branch of music over the hard rock. Top 20 radio did too. But entering college in 1990 pop was staid and synth music past it’s due date. I craved guitar and noise, but only Metal provided it. I wouldn’t dare jump to that branch... the music you chose was an identity statement! Then Nirvana came and somehow fused the two. They sewed together the rift that started when Sabbath and Glam took the British Invasion sound into two profoundly different directions. Later when I heard Cobain say his vision was to marry Sabbath with the Beatles, I knew how Nirvana had reinvented Rock and Top 20 radio!
Barry Paul
Barry Paul 20 күн мурун
Rick - you never do explain how Nirvana changed rock music. I'm curious what you mean by this.
James Cam
James Cam 17 күн мурун
They essentially created/pioneered the grunge genre that derived from punk rock I guess? Idk what Rick would say I'm just guessing/rambling so take my opinion as you will lol.
xtension xward
xtension xward 20 күн мурун
PLEASE do the same analysis for Nirvana Lounge act song !!! thank you
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