Why Nirvana Was Kicked Out Of Their Own Album Release Party

The rock 'n' roll lifestyle is one of hedonism, excess, and less-than-responsible behavior. Musical icons are nothing short of revered by their legions of fans but everyone who has to clean up the mess they leave in their wake may not be quite so fond of them.

Billy Idol, as but one notorious example, once caused such devastation during a stay in Bangkok's Orient Hotel in 1989 (according to Far Out Magazine) that the damage amounted to a total of around $250,000. For good measure, Idol left with his dignity in utter shreds: he was removed on a stretcher from the hotel by security forces, having refused to leave.

Grunge outfit Nirvana left a raucous rock stamp on the music world themselves. Their sophomore album, 1991's "Nevermind," is the stuff of legend. It's a good thing, then, that the band conducted themselves with the utmost decorum at the album's launch party. Except they didn't, and the whole thing was a gigantic food-fight fiasco instead.

Drinks are consumed and a food fight ensues

Far Out Magazine reports that Re-Bar in Seattle was chosen as the venue for the event, a bar that has since become a renowned institution in the city. At the time, it was a rather humble place, but some high-profile guests and an ample supply of drink saw the band gradually leave their inhibitions behind. According to Michael Azerrad's "Come As You Are: The Story Of Nirvana," the band was becoming increasingly inebriated, and by the time "Nevermind" had been played for attendees twice over, they were ripping down posters and demanding the DJ play different music (take that, establishment).

Around this juncture, according to Azerrad, a fateful tamale was thrown at Kurt Cobain. The music legend threw some Green Goddess herb dip back at his attacker (Nils Bernstein of the Nirvana fan club provided the refreshments for the party, and so could provide this super-specific detail). From there, everything descended into the inevitable messy carnage that all food fights swiftly devolve into.

The one-time owner of Re-Bar, Steve Wells, paints a very vivid picture of the sorry state the band was in when they were not-so-forcibly removed from the premises. Along with the venue's security, he told The Stranger later, he "rounded them up [and] got them out of the door just in time for them all to barf on the curb." In short order, Wells then brought the revelry indoors to an end. A magical end to a magical night.