Kurt Cobain was inarguably one of the most influential artists in music history. Widow Courtney Love's despairing quick speech to mourners on the day that Cobain died—16 years ago today—is an essential memory for the MTV Generation.
Cobain had a cult-like following when he was alive, and the sadness that still remains 16 years later is easy to imagine. Having chosen to end his own life, we are all left with only the great sound that Cobain created, along with lingering questions regarding his untimely death.
Grunge music becoming popular because of Cobain and his band, Nirvana, and he singlehandedly killed off the golden age of pretty boy rock. America was ready for a new sound, and Cobain delivered. The influence Nirvana left as a group—but, more importantly, that of Cobain as the band's lead—was palpable to a widespread variety of people then, and is palpable to an even wider group now.