Kurt Cobain’s Fender Mustang from ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ video sells at auction for more than $4.5 million

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Kurt Cobain’s Fender Mustang from ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ video sells at auction for more than $4.5 million

Words by Eli Duxson

The expected price was between $600,000 and $800,000!

Nirvana set the world on fire when they dropped Nevermind and changed the face and shape of music, especially at the time. 

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A byproduct of that no doubt is ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ whose music video is etched into iconic history, whose history is now in the hands of the Jim Irsay Collection in Indianapolis thanks to a spare $4,550,000!

The Fender Mustang Kurt Cobain played in that music video was sold for the first time at auction as part of Julien’s Auctions’ Music Icons three-day auction event taking place between May 20 – May 22 live at Hard Rock Cafe in New York and online.

In honour of the upcoming Mental Health Awareness Month, a portion of the proceeds from the auction of this legendary guitar and select Kurt Cobain items benefited the mental health charity ‘Kicking The Stigma.’

“The guitar was used in the recording studio during both the Nevermind and In Utero recording sessions, as well as numerous prominent live performances,” Julien’s said. 

“But it is most notable and prominently remembered as the guitar Cobain used in the music video for Nirvana’s lead single ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ from the band’s second studio album Nevermind.”

“I am thrilled to preserve and protect another piece of American culture that changed the way we listened to and looked at the world,” said Jim Irsay, who is also owner and CEO of the NFL’s Indianapolis Colts. 

“The fact that a portion of the proceeds will go toward our effort to kick the stigma surrounding mental illnesses makes this acquisition even more special to me.”

The Mustang will be on display at a free exhibit at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York on Friday June 3.

Head to Julien’s Auctions for more.