Thursday night (April 10) is going to be a special one for Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic. It's the night their band Nirvana will join some of their biggest influences (Led Zeppelin, the Beatles, Lead Belly) as members of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
But, of course, they'll be doing it as a duo and without singer/guitarist Kurt Cobain , who was found dead following his suicide 20 years ago this week. The pair visited the "Tonight Show" on Wednesday to have a chat with host Jimmy Fallon and they said that while they're excited about the honor, it is also a tough time for them.
Grohl, wearing a jean button-down and black jeans and Novoselic, in jeans, a black shirt and bowler hat, took their seats on the couch as the Roots played the theme song from Teen Spirit deodorant.
"That's crazy," Grohl said when Fallon brought up the Rock Hall honors. "It's exciting, it's also bittersweet too because our friend Kurt's been gone for 20 years," added bassist Novoselic. "So it's a good way to remember him. He should be here."
Grohl, who grew up in Virginia, said before he joined, he'd heard about Nirvana and loved the band's debut, Bleach. Then Novoselic talked about how both he and Cobain were "weird" kids in high school because, "we thought the world was weird so we gravitated towards each other. We loved punk rock music, and everybody else hated punk rock music."
Asked to recall the moment that they knew Nirvana was huge, Novoselic said the band's label initially printed 50,000 copies of their breakthrough, Nevermind, which went on to sell 30 million worldwide.
Grohl laughed about how even when the record had sold 500,000 copies and the "Smells Like Teen Spirit" video was in heavy rotation on MTV, Nirvana were still touring in a van with a U-Haul and playing 90-capacity clubs with huge crowds waiting outside.
Compare that to their biggest gig, 1993's Rock in Rio concert where they performed in front of 350,000.
Fallon geeked out about watching Nirvana on "Saturday Night Live" and obsessing over their Unplugged album, saying he loved playing their cover of Leadbelly's "Where Did You Sleep Last Night" on his guitar in his bedroom.
The duo also helped introduce yet another classic Fallon musical mash-up/impression. Donning a blonde bob wig, Fallon did his best Tom Petty imitation during a duet with Fleetwood Mac singer Stevie Nicks on the pair's 1981 hit, "Stop Draggin' My Heart Around." The RRHOF ceremony will air on HBO on May 31.