Last Updated: May 22, 2023, 15:18 IST
Kurt Cobain’s smashed Fender Stratocaster is pictured on dispaly at Julien’s Auctions in Gardena, California. (AFP)
The guitar was signed by all three members of the Seattle grunge outfit as they rocketed to global fame
A guitar smashed on stage by Kurt Cobain, the late front man of US rock band Nirvana, was sold for nearly $600,000, several times its original estimate.
The busted black Fender Stratocaster has been put back together, but is no longer playable, Kody Frederick of Julien’s Auctions said earlier this month.
Kurt Cobain took his own life in 1994 and was known for his intense performances.
The guitar was signed by all three members of the Seattle grunge outfit as they rocketed to global fame. Cobain, who often misspelt his own name, had signed the instrument ‘Kurdt Kobain’.
The auction house said it had expected the instrument to sell for $60,000 or roughly Rs 5 crore at the event in front of a live audience at the Hard Rock Cafe in New York City.
Instead, it went for $595,000, Julien’s said in a statement, calling the total “astounding.”
The guitar was destroyed as Nirvana were working on their break-out album Nevermind in the early 1990s.
“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 earlier in May.
“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.”
Nirvana’s hits, many of which were penned by Cobain, included “Come As You Are,” “Lithium” and the 1991 breakout “Smells Like Teen Spirit” — a track that became anthemic for a generation of alienated teenagers.
Cobain struggled with substance addiction and depression, and had a tumultuous relationship with his wife, Courtney Love.
The three-day auction, which concludes Sunday, also includes memorabilia from the careers of Eddie Van Halen, Elvis Presley, Freddie Mercury, Bill Wyman and Janet Jackson.
(With inputs from agencies)