Unsolicited Career Advice for … Courtney Love

Written by Music, Unsolicited Career Advice

Yeah, sure, Courtney Love might seem like she has it all together — but Rob Smith’s Uncle Donnie Skwatzenschitz sees through that put-together facade, and he’s reaching out with a plan.

Uncle Donnie has a soft spot for lost causes, and there are none more lost than Ms. Love. This recent missive outlines his concerns, and his plans to help her rise again. -RS

TO: Courtney Love
FROM: Don Skwatzenschitz
RE: Career Advice

You know, dear Courtney, we all feel a little lost sometimes. I remember the two and a half years between Jackson Browne’s Running on Empty and Hold Out records—you were just a kid, but trust me, they were long, lean years with no new JB poetry to get us all through. Jimmy Carter was in the White House, and you could just see the effect Browne’s absence had on him. Everything seemed to go straight to hell, without passing “Go,” without collecting $200 in worthless cash.

But we all snap out of it. In the summer of 1980, I turned on the radio and heard those wonderful words—”Down on the boulevard, they take it hard / They look at life with such disregard.” I wept. Openly. Mitzi and I were in the old Impala, cruising down Highway 1 at night, looking for a place to pull off and have a little shtup, you know? And then I heard the song and all thoughts of shtupping vanished, disappointing Mitzi horribly. But the voice was back, and his new words had … well, they had very little meaning, but I clung to them anyway. Didn’t help Jimmy Carter, though.

But you, Courtney, have taken feeling lost to a whole new level. We all had such hopes for you, too—the brave widow, newly single mom, protecting her husband’s legacy while establishing one of her own. That was before the anus wax meltdown in 2003, and the feud with Dave and Krist, and the Pam Anderson roast, or any of the other numerous breakdowns. The latest breakdown, though—the whole Kurt/Guitar Hero/Bon Jovi thing—is the last straw. We were merely worried about your safety before, dear—now we’re concerned about your sanity. You simply must turn it around—and I have just the plan:

Record new music—now! Art is a great diversion, maybe the best diversion. Not even you can play guitar, snort cocaine, sing, and get a facelift simultaneously. I’d say stick with the playing guitar and singing. You may never come up with something as cool as “Malibu” again, unless you get Billy Corgan to write another one for you and let you take the credit, but there’s lots to be gained by trying. Speaking of Billy Corgan, what do you get when you take Smashing Pumpkins and subtract D’Arcy, James, and Jimmy? You get Zwan. Do not, under any circumstances, “re-form” Hole without bringing back at least the drummer and that cute little bass player you had.

Take Kurt merchandise all the way. Okay, you want kids to remember Kurt for singing “You Give Love a Bad Name?” Be ready to get into it, full bore—and it’s a slippery slope. Be ready to sign off on the action figures and lunch boxes and “Buddy Kurt” dolls and ironic stapler accessories and detergent tie-ins (“Smells like Clean Spirit”) and even Kurt Kaskets. In fact, you should take Gene Simmons out to lunch—I’m sure he’ll have all sorts of ideas for you.

Give Frances Bean conservatorship over what’s left of your fortune. Yes, she’s just a kid; and yes, she probably doesn’t know investments from Incesticide. She certainly couldn’t do any worse, though, and whatever she loses in the market, she’ll make back when she tours with Foo Fighters in a couple years.

Get a theater in Branson. Vegas and Atlantic City are where washed-up artists go to reinvigorate themselves. Branson, Missouri is where they go to die. I hate to say it, Courtney, but you’re closer to Branson than Vegas. So check out where Yakov Smirnov and Jim Stafford have their theaters, get some land, and start building.

And if you ever get asked to play the Andy Williams Moon River Theatre—well that’s just like crossing the river Styx. In fact, I think Styx is playing there in January.

All the Best,
Don

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