Men with Microphones: Greg Giraldo and Kurt Cobain

Comedy Central:

I watched a Tribute on Comedy Central last night and it was dedicated to the late Greg Giraldo. Giraldo was known for his his clever and hard core rants, his unique and brutal honesty when handed a microphone.  Greg was loved and admired by fans and was said to be always generous, and always brilliantly funny. Jon Stewart, Conan O’Brien,Sarah Silverman, Jim Gaffigan, Colin Quinn, Dave Attell and Lewis Black all shared behind the scenes stories, and insight as to who he was as a comedian and person and why he was the “truest” of them all.

Sharing the spotlight:

Many of the comics, say Giraldo was generous because he was “very vocal about giving them credit.” That was exceptionally cool of him.  “He introduced us to a lot of the industry folks and helped get my profile on the map,” says Jesse Joyce.

It reminded me of the late Kurt Cobain as well, who was respected and admired by many, perceived as a sensitive, empathetic, thoughtful artist who battled similar demons, while dragging other bands into the spot light with him too.

Cobain showed appreciation of early alternative rock bands, like Sonic Youth and REM and dozens of other bands. Cobain was constantly championing unknown bands and the Meat Puppets appeared onstage during Nirvana’s 1993 MTV Unplugged appearance, to perform three songs from their second album. Most of Nirvana’s set consisted of “cover songs.”

Comedy Central Roasts and Nevermind:

Giraldo’s humor had a dark side, which he sometimes referenced in his stand-up act. He had been a heavy drinker, but Giraldo became a wildly successful stand-up comic touring the country as a headliner at many clubs and dispensing his own brand of sharp and often brutal humor, while Cobain sang and wrote songs, called “Rape Me, Come as you are and All Apologies.”

The comics said, “ We feel like he was a lethal combination of being wickedly smart, incredibly articulate, supremely confident on stage and not having a filter about what he was willing to reveal about himself to a group of strangers.” “But he was so brutal about his own issues, that it made him really vulnerable,” as Cobain sang chorus lines, “I think I’m dumb,” and “I’m stupid and contagious.”

” Butch Vig, who recorded Nevermind said, “Even though you couldn’t quite tell what Cobain was singing about, you knew it was intense as hell.”  I have followed both men and I don’t think Greg would  hide behind Cobain’s metaphors and  I don’t feel Cobain ever attacked with humor, but both men never took short cuts. Both men were obviously vulnerable, powerfully authentic and  undeniably popular.


There have already been numerous books and movies about Kurt Cobain and Nirvana but this is Giraldo’s first tribute, since his death. The Comedy Special celebrated the life of a modern hero, a groundbreaking comedic voice and the impact he left on his peers and fans.

Giraldo died at 44 last September and Cobain would be 44 years old today as well.


9 thoughts on “Men with Microphones: Greg Giraldo and Kurt Cobain

  1. Thanks bro. still love Nevermind, and I am sure I’ll be “youtubing” Giraldo for years too!


  2. Ahhhh- roasting Chevy Chase, Pam Anderson, William Shatner, Jeff Foxworthy, Flavor Flav, Bob Saget, Joan Rivers, Larry the Cable Guy, and David Hasselhoff. Kyle-which was your favorites?
    On Jeff Ross: “You’re fattening faster than you’re aging. You’re like the Curious Case of Benjamin Glutton”


  3. My All-Tme Favorite Giraldo Roast Joke was at the Roast of Pam Anderson – and fittingly (for this piece), Girlado destroyed – of all people – Cobain’s ex-wife, Courtney Love, as well as two of his comedy peers with:

    “Courtney – your career dried up faster than Sarah Silverman’s pussy around guys who can’t help her in the business.”

    – Long Live The GREAT Greg Giraldo


  4. I love all his work. stand up, roasts, sitcoms, talk shows. etc There is a lot of footage out there, we have not seen. Same w Cobain


  5. Ironically Cobain’s widow, was there! Think it was for Pam Anderson’s Roast. Great reminder Eric. I think Ross, said something nuts regarding how is it possible Love looks worse than Cobain? ouch!


  6. Gilbert Gottfried is famously cheap. I’m impressed you’re here Gilbert. You gotta buy new clothes and take a week off work just to do this. But you showed up. You tightened your belt and you came. You’re like David Carradine.


    Both magical. We feel like he was a lethal combination of being wickedly smart, incredibly articulate, supremely confident on stage and not having a filter about what he was willing to reveal about himself to a group of strangers.” It’s so true, of both artists. But that is what makes the art so real, is to bring it to a personal level. You can’t relate to me?… well let me show you a glimpse of my world. Both my dream, and my nightmare. I thin that is what set these two artists apart, was that both had this certain magic to make their issues your issues.


  7. Tyler, thanks for the info, insight and opinions. You are def one I wanted to share this with!! I hope all is well with you buddy


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