In a move that experts have been forecasting for some time, Daniel Schmoot, owner and manager of Java'Tude, the tiny Seattle coffee house credited with the birth of the Grunge music scene, announced the death of the very musical art form which he helped sensationalize less than ten years ago. In commemoration of this sad occasion, Schmoot offered half-priced mochas during the press conference for anyone currently fighting the establishment.
The Grunge scene began in this historical cafe in 1986 when two friends who would later start Mother Love Bone, the father figure of the Grunge scene, remarked how their life just totally sucked. Legend has it that the youngsters proceeded to scream uncontrollably until the proprietor of the establishment removed "Hip To Be Square" by Huey Lewis and the News from the juke box. They claimed they had no way to identify with such happy music in their soggy little town.
What followed was a renaissance of musical form as so-called "grunge" bands began to pack houses throughout the city. While it is true that the early success of these bands can be attributed to many people just trying to get in out of the rain, in time the bands themselves became the draw.
Grunge music did not become a national sensation until the release of two albums, "Nevermind" from Nirvana and Pearl Jam's ill-titled "Ten." The latter was named by lead singer Eddie Vedder simply to inform the buyer of the number of songs on the record. Sadly, the album contains eleven tracks, and the state of the American Student's mathematical skills have been going downhill ever since.
With the success of these albums came the success of other Seattle Grunge bands, such as Alice in Chains, Mudhoney, former metal-rocker Soundgarden and Temple of the Dog. However, the frailty of the phenomenon could already be seen in the fact that Temple of the Dog was really just half of Pearl Jam plus half of Soundgarden. And Pearl Jam itself included members of Mother Love Bone. Grunge was already stretching itself thin.
The world of grunge came to crashing reality with the suicide of Nirvana lead singer Kurt Cobain. While many contribute his suicide to the ever mounting pressures of life under the microscope and having to deal with selling out his ideals in an ever-changing world, others attribute it to the fact that he was married to Courtney Love.
Since his death, grunge has itself been slowly committing suicide. Grunge bands have become known for being difficult to work with. Stone Temple Pilots cancelled concerts left and right as their lead singer became the poster child for drug rehab. Pearl Jam defied Ticketmaster and put together a concert schedule that had most of its shows in the middle of various cow fields. Nirvana continued to release album after album, and many wondered if this was really a good idea, what with the lead singer dead and all.
Finally, Pearl Jam, the nations grunge darling, released an album of Indian Chants and Christmas Carols and the end was in sight. With Alice in Chains unable to record an album due to the lead singer's fear of microphones and Soundgarden's recent publicized break-up, it was only a matter of time.
As Professor Laquisha Lupe of The Institute for Musical Parity said, "The thing about grunge was its attack against the mainstream. It was Generation X's way of rebelling, but Generation X is no longer angst-ridden. They're happy. They got jobs. It's hard to mosh when you make over 40K a year."
While most certainly expect this to signal the end of the booming flannel industry, today's announcement is otherwise expected to have little or no noticeable effect on life in general.
Area quasi-punk rocker and Offspring fan Luke Mattise summed it up best. "Sure I'll miss it, but I can always put on Pearl Jam's 'Vs.' or Soundgarden's 'Superunknown' if I get nostalgic for my acne-filled youth. And in ten years, hell, can you say retro?"