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For sale: Kurt Cobain's guitar

A guitar that belonged to the Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain is expected to fetch $80,000 at an auction

Kurt Cobain's smashed Fender Stratocaster displayed beside the 1991 'Smells Like Teen Spirit' debut performance set list at Julien's Auctions in Gardena, California, on 2 May.(AFP)

By Team Lounge

LAST PUBLISHED 05.05.2023  |  02:39 PM IST

A guitar that belonged to Nirvana frontman Kurt Cobain is going under the hammer later this month in the US.

The smashed guitar has been put back together, but is no longer playable, said Kody Frederick of Julien's Auctions. Frederick expects the musical artifact to fetch $80,000, according to a report in AFP.


"You can see here the break that took place as he slammed down the guitar, where the neck here kind of connects, as well as down here on the bottom where he slammed the guitar down," Frederick told AFP.

Also read: Freddie Mercury’s clothes, furniture and his crown are up for auction

"Kurt Cobain, when he was on stage, when he played, he was a machine. The man was angry, and you could feel that on stage. And you would feel that by the way he would treat his instruments.

"This broken element, in a strange way, from this broken musician, that really defined this rough and tumble era of music."

The busted black Fender Stratocaster was signed by all three members of the Seattle grunge outfit as they rocketed to global fame, states the AFP report.

Nirvana's hits, many of which were penned by Cobain, included "Come As You Are," "Lithium" and the breakout “Smells Like Teen Spirit".

The three-day auction, which begins in New York on 19 May, also includes a set list hand-written in pink marker by Cobain for an April 1991 gig in Seattle, according to the AFP report. It is expected to go for up to $6,000. The auction also includes memorabilia from the careers of Eddie Van Halen, Elvis Presley, Freddie Mercury and Bill Wyman.


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Meanwhile, Christie's will soon launch the sale of jewels belonging to Austrian billionaire Heidi Horten, whose German businessman husband made his fortune under the Nazis.

The auction house will offer 700 lots from the collection of Horten, who died last year aged 81. According to Forbes, she was worth $2.9 billion. Her collection includes "unique and exceptional pieces" from 20th-century designers including Cartier, Harry Winston, Bulgari and Van Cleef & Arpels. As per estimates, the complete collection has an estimated value of over $150 million.

Also read: For sale: Jewellery with Nazi links