Last month saw Post Malone and Travis Barker join forces on a killer Nirvana tribute set to raise funds for he United Nation’s COVID-19 Solidarity Fund for the World Health Organisation.
Punters that tuned into the stream donated $2.5 million for the coronavirus relief fund. A sum that Google pledged to match at a 2:1 rate, up to $5 million.
Malone and Barker tore through a setlist of 15 Nirvana classics including fan-favourites ‘Come As You Are’, ‘Heart-Shaped Box’, ‘About A Girl’ and stacks more.
In a new interview with Spin, Barker detailed how the iso-collaboration of the ages came about.
“I was sitting at home and I was working with this artist named Poorstacy. I got a phone call from Brian Lee. He writes with Post a lot and is a really good friend of his and he said, “I have this song idea I want to present to Post, I’d really like you to record drums on it,” Barker explains.
“So I sent drums back 45 minutes later. He’s like, “This is awesome. Would you be down to do this Nirvana thing with us? We were talking about maybe doing 20 Nirvana covers and it’ll be a charity for coronavirus and help first responders.”
Barker revealed that at first he thought Lee was joking. However, after three days of discussions, the music masterminds found a way to turn the ambitious scheme into a reality.
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“We kept talking about it and they said they were serious and I should come out there in three days. So I was like, “Whoa, this is really happening.
“So I just spent the next three days learning 20 Nirvana songs, which was fun because Nirvana is one of the greatest bands of all time,” he continued.
“People are sitting around and really need live music. And what better band to pay tribute to than Nirvana?.”
When asked about the experience of learning the Nirvana songs fo the set, Barker divulged “You have to listen with a different ear when you’re actually focusing in on learning the song instead of just enjoying the song.
‘”There are some weird Nirvana arrangements. Like in “School” there’s some weird arrangements. In “Very Ape” I think the chorus goes like five measures instead of four. Nirvana had very cool…what seemed like very simple arrangements, but when you look a little closer it was kind of different.”
Barker has always had his finger in many proverbial pies, and quarantine has only heightened his proclivity for productivity.
“As far as quarantine I can just focus and create. I’ve been very productive and just been on one,” he explains.
Barker has new blink-182 music set to arrive in the next fortnight, he’s also been chipping away at producing the forthcoming Machine Gun Kelly record, Tickets To My Downfall. In addition to his creative pursuits, Barker has signed the first artist to his new DTA records imprint — jxdn.
The drummer is acting as a mentor of sorts to his new signee. “We’re in the studio 24/7 and we’re doing acoustic versions of songs and we’re writing new songs. I was up with him until 5 am last night writing a song with him,” he explains. “So it’s just really guiding him and making sure everybody is on board. And just kind of executing the vision and direction we are going.”
You can read the full Spin feature here.