BEVERLY HILLS—Kurt Cobain’s 1959 Martin D-18E acoustic guitar could sell for $1 million this June at Julien’s Auctions. The current starting bid is $250,000, the company told Canyon News. The guitar and its original hard-shell case will take center stage at the auction’s Music Icons event. Rare memorabilia from Prince, The Beatles, Michael Jackson, and other music legends will also be for sale.
Cobain, the iconic frontman of the American rock band Nirvana, used the guitar during the band’s 1993 performance on “MTV Unplugged” in New York, five months before his death.
Julien’s Auctions states:
“This was the only guitar he used throughout the entire MTV Unplugged performance. Cobain purchased this guitar and its vintage hard-shell case at Voltage Guitars in Los Angeles. Both the guitar and its case were personally customized, by Cobain, prior to his MTV appearance. The set is being offered together in this auction, along with three Dunlop guitar picks, a partial set of Martin & Co. guitar strings, and other accessories further outlined in the full catalog supporting this offering.”
Another eye-catching piece from the collection includes a smashed and black Fender Stratocaster guitar Cobain used during Nirvana’s 1994 In Utero Tour. The musician gave the guitar to an audience member after a show. A letter from the audience member comes with the item, and the pre-sale estimate starts at $60,000. Cobain’s metallic silver shirt, worn in the band’s 1993 “Heart-shaped Box” music video, will also be present with a letter of authenticity. Its pre-sale estimate price is $10,000.
The auction will take place in Beverly Hills and online from June 19 through June 20. More information can be found at juliensauctions.com.