You'll soon be able to visit Kurt Cobain's childhood home

Following a restoration project, the Nirvana frontman's Aberdeen, Washington house will be open for private tours.

by Douglas Greenwood
02 August 2021, 10:00am

Photo by KE.Mazur/Wireimage

Imagine living in the house where a legend was raised. That’s something Lee and Danielle Bacon are familiar with; the couple are currently renovating a house in Aberdeen, Washington that was once the childhood home of Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain. Since purchasing the house from the Cobain family for $225,000, the couple have been restoring it to closer resemble when Kurt and his family lived there. Now, as they prepare to finish it, it’s been added to Washington’s Heritage Register, making it one of the few childhood homes of stars to make the list of significant and protected sites in the state.

Lee Bacon spoke to Rolling Stone about their plans to restore the home to its Cobain-era look and feel: “Our goal is to make the house a tribute project to Kurt’s early life and career, with museum detail,” he says. “The next chapter is how to make that happen.” According to Lee, the work is “90-95%” done, complete with many original items, such as Kurt’s mattress and the toys he shared with his sister. The last step is to repaint the house’s exterior from its current yellow shade to the fern and mint colours it bore in the 1970s. 

How did they manage to make it so accurate? Well, Kurt’s sister Kim consulted on it. “I enjoy being involved and providing my input,” she told Rolling Stone. “I am very happy and supportive Lee and Dani took this on three years ago.” 

The Bacons’ plan is to eventually start free private tours of the home in spring next year,  “on special days, events or happenings by special request,” Lee says. “We’re working on the logistics of how that could be.” It will be paired with a more accessible, 25,000 square foot space in Aberdeen, about a mile-and-a-half from Kurt’s old home, which will display memorabilia and photography from Nirvana’s heyday, as well as artefacts from the house. That too will be free to access.

The family’s application for the house to be recognised as a heritage site was supported unanimously by Washington’s Department of Archaeology and Historic Preservation. “It’s rare to have a childhood home considered,” Allyson Brooks, the department’s executive director told Rolling Stone. “Generally we want to be sure that we’re acknowledging that something happened in a childhood home that was significant. In this case, it’s Kurt Cobain, who developed his musical passions and skills in Aberdeen and in that house.”

The decision means that Kurt’s home cannot be torn down in future, thus the Bacons’ restored version will be around to tour for decades to come.

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