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I cut that one out.”For his part, Oseary, who saw Courtney and Hole as his private find, was shocked.
“The stories in the English press went, ‘Madonna doesn’t have AIDS and she wants to sign Hole,’ ” he recalls, sounding rather exasperated.
In mid-1991, Guy Oseary, an enthusiastic nineteen-year-old who was working for Madonna and her manager, Freddy De Mann, at their then unnamed company, told his bosses about Hole.
He also contacted Courtney’s lawyer, Rosemary Carroll, and Hole-mania began.
“Courtney had been orchestrating this game plan from the beginning,” says Carroll.
“No one can get a seat on a plane to Seattle or Portland now,” says Ed Rosenblatt, president of Geffen Records, Nirvana’s label.
“Every flight is booked by A&R people out to find the next Nirvana.”Last August, Hole, which is much more extreme and less melodic than Nirvana, released on Caroline Records, an independent that is a subsidiary of Virgin.
The record is intensely difficult to listen to—Courtney’s singing is a mix of shouting, screeching, and rasping—but her songwriting, which has been compared to Joni Mitchell’s, is powerful.
“Slit me open and suck my scars,” she sings about sex.
“Don’t worry baby, you will never stink so bad again,” she intones about a botched abortion.