Although Nirvana’s performance at the Reading Festival was a major success, Dave Grohl remembers panicking beforehand.
Grohl recently explained to NME that he felt the pressures of being the festival headliners. “I was fucking terrified,” he admitted. “I would wake up every morning in this panic attack in a fit of anxiety, knowing that there was this festival that I was going to have to play in front of 35,000 people – which I had never done. When we got there that day, I realized how big it really was.”
He added, “So much had happened in those 12 months. The band had obviously had its ups and downs … I didn’t expect much. Kurt [Cobain] had been in and out of rehab, the band hadn’t really done much in the months leading up to it and everything just seemed sort of scattered and disconnected. We’d had one rehearsal a few days before and it just didn’t feel grounded.”
Luckily, the performance is highly regarded as one of the best rock performances in history.