Candy / Molly's Lips

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"Candy/Molly's Lips"
Candy + Molly's Lips cover.jpg
Single by The Fluid and Nirvana
ReleasedJanuary 1991
Recorded"Molly's Lips": February 9, 1990
"Candy": 1990
GenreGrunge, punk rock
Length3:15 / 2:00
LabelSub Pop
Nirvana singles chronology
"Candy" / "Molly's Lips"
"Smells Like Teen Spirit"

"Candy"/"Molly's Lips" is a vinyl-only split-single from the American rock bands The Fluid and Nirvana. It was released in January 1991 on Sub Pop records and includes two live tracks: "Candy" by The Fluid; and "Molly's Lips", a cover of a song by The Vaselines, performed by Nirvana.

The single[edit]

"Candy" first appeared on The Fluid's 1990 EP, Glue. The EP was re-released on CD in 1993 along with their 1989 album, Roadmouth.

"Molly's Lips" was recorded live on February 9, 1990, at the Pine Street Theatre in Portland, Oregon. It was written by the Scottish band The Vaselines about Molly Weir, according to band member Eugene Kelly, presumably because her Rentaghost television character Hazel McWitch typically appeared in whiteface with emphatic red lips. According to Michael Azerrad's 1993 Nirvana biography Come as You Are: The Story of Nirvana, the band's singer and guitarist Kurt Cobain was opposed to the release of the track, feeling that this version was not strong. However, the single constituted part of the band's buyout deal from their former record label, Sub Pop Records. "Candy/Molly's Lips" was Nirvana's final release on Sub Pop Records. The word "Later" is etched into the single's run-out groove.[1] A remix of this version of Molly's Lips was included on the 2009 reissue of the Nirvana debut album Bleach.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Candy (Live)" by The Fluid – 3:15
  2. "Molly's Lips (Live)" by Nirvana – 2:00


The single was only released on 7 inch vinyl, and in limited numbers of 7500. The first 4000 copies were pressed on green swirled vinyl, the final 3500 pressed on black vinyl.[1] Counterfeit versions of the single also pressed on black vinyl exist, but can be distinguished from the real version as the matrix number is different.[2] The live version of "Molly's Lips" by Nirvana was exclusive to the single, though was subsequently released on the 2009 Bleach reissue. The single is also notorious for being The Fluid's most famous release, due to the fact it was split with Nirvana and exposed them to a wider audience.

In 2017, to mark what would have been Kurt Cobain's 50th birthday, the Phonographic Performance Limited released a list of the top twenty most played Nirvana songs on the TV and radio in the UK in which "Molly's Lips" was ranked at number eighteen.[3]


Apart from this 1990 live version, released on limited edition single in 1991, Nirvana performed "Molly's Lips" several other times in concert from 1989 to 1993. On August 23, 1991, it was performed live with its author, the Vaselines' Eugene Kelly, at the 1991 Reading Festival in Reading, Berkshire. It was again performed live with Kelly on December 5, 1991 in London, England. On both occasions, Kelly and Cobain shared vocal duties.

Studio version[edit]

Nirvana also recorded a studio version on BBC Radio 1 for John Peel in October 1990 which appeared on the 1992 tour EP Hormoaning, and was included on the rarities compilation Incesticide. This version was released as a 12" vinyl promotional single in Brazil, to promote Incesticide.[4]

Recording and release history[edit]

Studio versions[edit]

Date recorded Studio Producer Releases Personnel
October 21, 1990 Maida Vale Studios, London, UK John Peel Hormoaning (1992)
Incesticide (1992)
"Molly's Lips" (promo single released only in Brazil) (1992)

Live versions[edit]

Date recorded Venue Releases Personnel
February 9, 1990 Pine Street Theater, Portland, Oregon, US "Candy" / 'Molly's Lips" (1991)
Bleach (deluxe) (2009)
  • Kurt Cobain: vocals, guitar
  • Krist Novoselic: bass guitar
  • Chad Channing: drums


  1. ^ a b Molly's Lips (live) Retrieved May 12, 2015.
  2. ^ Counterfeit Molly's Lips Retrieved May 12, 2015.
  3. ^ 20 most-played Nirvana songs revealed to mark Kurt Cobain’s 50th birthday Retrieved March 3, 2017.
  4. ^ Molly's Lips - studio version - promo single Retrieved May 12, 2015.
  • Nirvana Live Guide
  • Azerrad, Michael. Come as You Are: The Story of Nirvana, Doubleday, New York: 1993, ISBN 0-86369-746-1