Kurt Cobain’s ‘MTV Unplugged’ guitar is going up for auction

With an estimated starting bid of $1million

The acoustic guitar Kurt Cobain played during Nirvana‘s 1993 ‘MTV Unplugged in New York’ performance will go up for auction next month.

The 1959 Martin D-18E will have an estimated starting bid of $1million (£810,835). It will be included as part of the ‘Music Icons’ sale at Julien’s Auctions, taking place in-house and online on June 19 and 20.

In a statement, Julien’s Auctions CEO Darren Julien commented, “This important guitar has earned its rightful place in rock & 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.”


The guitar comes with the original hard-case Cobain kept it in, emblazoned with a flyer for Poison Idea’s 1990 album ‘Feel the Darkness’. The case contains a half-used pack of guitar strings, picks and a suede “stash” bag.

The setlist from the ‘MTV Unplugged’ performance will also be up for auction. Other Nirvana relics up for grabs include a smashed Fender Stratocaster used by Cobain during the band’s 1994 ‘In Utero’ tour and the shirt he wore in the ‘Heart-Shaped Box’ music video.

Last year, the cardigan Cobain wore as part of the ‘MTV Unplugged’ performance sold through Julien’s Auctions for $334,000 (£260,000). The record-breaking sum marked the most expensive cardigan ever sold at auction, according to the auction house.