Smashed Fender guitar by Kurt Cobain sells for nearly $600,000


A guitar smashed by late Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain in the early 1990s was sold at an auction for nearly $600,000 – over 10 times of its estimated price. The busted black Fender Stratocaster was sold at the auction at the Hard Rock Cafe in New York and acquired for $596,900 by a buyer, whose identity is not known. According to the auction house, Cobain gave the guitar to his friend and musical collaborator Mark Lanegan (who died last year) during the North American leg of Nirvana’s Nevermind tour in 1992.

Cobain, who took his own life in 1994, destroyed the guitar as Nirvana was working on their break-out album Nevermind in the early 1990s. The instrument has been put back together but is no longer playable; it is signed by all three band members (Cobain, Krist Novoselic and Dave Grohl) in a silver marker. It also features an affectionate inscription by Cobain to Lanegan, and is signed by Cobain — who often misspelt his own name — as “Kurdt Kobain”.

Editorial credit: Stefano Chiacchiarini ’74 /