The guitar that Kurt Cobain played on MTV Unplugged back in 1993 just sold for a record-breaking $6 MILLION.
The price broke the world records for Most Expensive Guitar, Most Expensive Memorabilia, World’s Most Expensive Acoustic Guitar, and World’s Most Expensive Nirvana Memorabilia Sold at Auction. The opening bid was $1 million. For the gear heads out there, it was a 1959 Martin D-18E. Cobain took his own life less than five months after that performance.
Kurt’s daughter Frances Bean Cobain used to own the guitar, but she lost it to her ex-husband Isaiah Silva in their divorce. Frances and her mom Courtney Love tried to get it back but were denied. More on that story can be found in the original post, see below.
ORIGINAL POST BY BRIGETTE ROSE ON JUNE 22, 2020 IN BRIGETTE’S BLOG
If you think you have family drama, don’t feel bad… I’m pretty sure these guys have you beat by a long shot.
Do you remember the Martin D-18E acoustic guitar Kurt Cobain played during Nirvana’s MTV Unplugged performance in November 1993? I’m not really a gear-head per se, but I remember watching the performance over and over on YouTube and seeing that guitar in his hands – wooden with a very basic design, nothing fancy on the neck or body… That guitar is a rock’n’roll artifact with a pretty insane history, and it is one of the items being auctioned off for “Music Icons”, which is an auction taking place live in Beverly Hills and online at Julien’s Live.
Let’s jump back to that “insane history” behind that guitar… Up until 2014 Courtney Love and Frances Bean had ownership of that guitar. Then Frances married a musician named Isaiah Silva, who actually bore a striking resemblance to her late father Kurt Cobain. Coincidence? Maybe, but that’s not the insane history I’m talking about. She ended up giving the famed Martin guitar to Silva as a wedding gift, and then things went sour when the two divorced in 2016. It was a very nasty break-up according to the press. Obviously when Silva said he was keeping the guitar because it was his “wedding gift”, things got even uglier. This started a war between himself and Frances’ mother Courtney Love, who is already known for her impulsive nature and choice words when enraged.
Long story short, there was a huge battle involving Courtney Love hiring Sam Lutfi, Britney Spears’ former manager, to pressure Silva to return the guitar. The story ends with alleged threats being made against Silva and the mother of his child, and a lawsuit against Lufti. That brings us to 2020 where the sacred guitar will be auctioned off at Julien’s Auctions next month. Who’s the seller? It doesn’t say, but it’s probably Silva.