The rare D-18E guitar Kurt Cobain played during his 1993 “MTV Unplugged” performance approximately five months before his death is expected to fetch at least $1 million at auction next month. The D-18E is the crowning object among a collection of Cobain’s belongings listed for auction.
“This important guitar has earned its rightful place in Rock ‘N’ 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 auction house explained in a press release.
The guitar also features rare, personal custom details — Cobain decorated the hardshell case with a flyer from Poison Idea’s 1990 album Feel the Darkness, and three baggage claim stubs adorn the handle. He also added a Bartolini pickup to the soundhole, and the case includes three guitar picks and a suede “stash” bag.
Yet even without its mythic owner, the instrument is a precious musical object. According to CNN, there were only 302 D-18Es made by the Martin Guitar company.
The guitar will be on display at the Hard Rock Cafe in Piccadilly Circus, London from May 15th to 31, and at Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills from June 15 to 19.
The olive green Manhattan brand sweater he wore during that same 1994 set sold for $334,000 at auction last year.