Are you a huge Nirvana fan who missed out on buying Kurt Cobain and Courtney Love’s former home in Seattle? Lucky for you, there are two quintessential pieces of Nirvana memorabilia that are for sale, but you’re going to need a lot of money to purchase these incredible personal items of Kurt Cobain.
Kurt Cobain’s iconic olive green cardigan sweater that he wore during Nirvana’s renowned MTV Unplugged performance has gone up for sale at Julien’s Auctions. On November 18, 1993, Nirvana performed their legendary Unplugged set with haunting covers of songs by The Vaselines, David Bowie, and Lead Belly. The MTV Unplugged in New York album was released on November 1, 1994, and debuted at number one on the Billboard 200. There were 310,500 copies sold, which was the highest first-week sales of Nirvana’s career.
Visually, Cobain’s vintage sweater was one of the most memorable aspects of the notorious acoustic set. For better or worse, the green cardigan has not been washed since Cobain died. The sweater became a symbol of Kurt’s grunge style.
“It’s very important that we don’t wash it,” Darren Julien of Julien’s Auctions told Rolling Stone. “The stains are still there. There’s even cigarette burns that you can see on the sweater.”
The cardigan is made of acrylic, mohair, and Lycra. There is discoloration near the left and right pockets. The sweater initially came with five buttons, but one of them is missing.
After Kurt’s death, the sweater was originally given to Jackie Farry, the nanny of Frances Bean Cobain and close friend of Courtney Love. She sold the iconic sweater in November of 2015 for $137,500, far outperforming the cardigan’s pre-auction estimate of $60,000.
This time around, the green cardigan is expecting to fetch between $200,000 and $300,000. Julien’s Auctions set the minimum bid at $50,000. The auction on the sweater will start at 10:00 AM PDT on October 25, 2019.
If dirty sweaters aren’t your thing, there is also a custom-built Fender guitar that Cobain used during Nirvana’s In Utero tour. That tour would be the last ever performed by Nirvana after it was canceled when Kurt suffered a drug overdose in Rome on March 6, 1994. On April 8, 1994, Kurt Cobain was found dead in his Seattle home after committing suicide.
Julien’s Auctions features Kurt Cobain’s left-handed sky blue with red mottled pickguard Fender Mustang guitar. The guitar was constructed by Scott Zimmerman, which was a task since Fender’s custom guitar shop was not equipped to build left-handed Mustangs at the time. The guitar was shipped to Cobain on October 22, 1993.
“When this guitar arrived in the United States, Cobain’s guitar tech further customized it, adding a black Seymour Duncan JB pickup instead of the stock single-coil, and a Gotoh Tune-o-Matic bridge,” the Julien’s Auctions listing states. “This guitar was known as ‘Skystang III,’ as reflected by a label on the original case.”
The Culver City, California-based auction house calls the guitar “the most thoroughly documented Cobain guitar to come to market, with a solid track of its provenance.”Julien’s Auctions believes the value of the guitar to be between $300,000 and $500,000. The guitar has a starting price of $75,000.
Courtney Love gifted the guitar to a Nirvana fan three months after Cobain’s death. The letter written by Love accompanying the guitar read: “This was one of his favorite guitars.” The one-of-a-kind guitar for sale also comes with Courtney’s letter on her personal stationery, the original hardshell case, the original FedEx shipping label, and images of the guitar while on exhibit at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.
For those who don’t have hundreds of thousands of dollars to spend on Kurt Cobain memorabilia, you can buy a contract that Nirvana signed with The Geffen Company on December 22, 1992.
The 12-page Recording Agreement Amendment is for Nirvana’s Incesticide album that was released in December of 1992. Geffen paid the rock band an advance of $5,500,000. The contract is signed in black pen by Nirvana band members Kurt Cobain, Chris Novoselic, and David Grohl. There are currently three bids on the contract, the highest $3,000.