The guitar at the center of Frances Bean Cobain‘s nasty divorce battle is going under the hammer.
Kurt Cobain‘s daughter gave up her late father’s 1959 Martin D-18E electric-acoustic guitar, which he strummed during Nirvana‘s MTV Unplugged set in 1993 – five months before his death, to settle her divorce battle with Isaiah Silva.
Her ex-husband maintained he was the rightful owner of the instrument after Frances gave the guitar to him as a wedding gift.
Now, the guitar is set to change hands again – it will be on sale at an upcoming Julien’s Auctions Music Icons event, set for June (2020).
“In addition, the sale of the guitar comes with its original hard-shell case decorated by Cobain with a flyer from the punk rock band Poison Idea’s 1990 album Feel the Darkness,” a release reads. “Three baggage claim ticket stubs are attached to the handle, along with an Alaska Airlines sticker affixed to the case.
“The storage compartment of the case also contains Cobain’s half-used pack of Martin guitar strings, three guitar picks, and his suede ‘stash’ bag decorated with a miniature silver spoon, fork, and knife.”
“Julien’s Auctions is proud to offer this historic guitar from Kurt Cobain, who upended the music industry and pop culture at large with his mythic performance fronting Nirvana on MTV Unplugged in New York,” said Darren Julien, the president/CEO of Julien’s Auctions. “This important guitar has earned its rightful place in Rock ’N’ Roll history as the instrument played by one of rock’s most influential musicians and icons in one of the greatest and most memorable live performances of all time.”
Also up for grabs at the auction: a smashed Fender Stratocaster guitar used by Kurt Cobain while performing with Nirvana on the 1994 In Utero Tour, a metallic silver lame long-sleeve button-down shirt worn by the artist in Nirvana’s 1993 Heart-shaped Box music video, and a copy of Nirvana’s 1989 Bleach CD cover signed ‘Kurt’ and inscribed with drawings by Cobain.
Julien’s Auctions bosses have broken world records with the sale of Kurt Cobain’s memorabilia, including the cardigan he wore on MTV Unplugged in New York, which sold for a record $334,000, his In Utero tour Fender Mustang guitar, which sold for $340,000, and a Nirvana paper plate setlist written in Cobain’s handwriting, which sold for a record $22,400 (£18,150).