Despite A Lust for Self-Destruction, Courtney Love Turns 50

She’s one of the last vestiges of the old school definition of a rock star: Someone who drinks, smokes, swears and wakes up some time after 5 p.m. With all of this in mind, most people were wagering Courtney Love was rife for a pre-50 death, fuck, even a pre-30 death. But, much to all of our surprises, she has transcended expectations for failure–because only a fuck-up dies young.

Still don't give a fuck
Still don’t give a fuck
At 27–the age rock stars are intended to kick the bucket–Courtney Love released her first album with Hole, and eventually entered the mainstream grunge consciousness after Hole’s sophomore album, Live Through This/being married to Kurt Cobain. Her drunken and drug-addled antics soon became just as much apart of the reason people paid attention to her as the music.
Album cover for Pretty on the Inside, Hole's debut
Album cover for Pretty on the Inside, Hole’s debut
Love was perhaps destined to a life fraught with psychosis considering her mother was a psychotherapist and her father briefly managed The Grateful Dead. I mean, this is a girl who once auditioned for The Mickey Mouse Club and decided to read a Sylvia Plath poem for it. She was never built to give a fuck. And this is also where her lengthy stripping career comes in, including several stints in Japan.
Often most remembered for her marriage to Cobain
Often most remembered for her marriage to Cobain
By the time she was in the limelight, Love was plenty ready to one-up her pre-fame antics. This, among other things, included throwing a makeup compact at Madonna’s head and punching Kathleen Hanna at Lollapalooza–both events took place in 1995, so maybe she was still reeling from Kurt’s suicide.
The infamous encounter with Madonna after the 1995 VMAs
The infamous encounter with Madonna after the 1995 VMAs
As the 90s ended, Love and Hole were a thing of the past, but she still found ways to stay in the spotlight–though generally not through her music (she released one solo album, America’s Sweetheart, to minimal fanfare). Her various spats with different celebrities, including Dave Grohl, Billy Corgan, and her own daughter, Frances Bean, are part of what continues to make her legendary. And so, let us pray that Love lives another fifty years to keep the tempestuousness and controversy coming.

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