When Grunge Cleans Up

The olive-drab cardigan Kurt Cobain wore during Nirvana’s 1993 performance on MTV’s Unplugged — four months before he committed suicide — has sold at auction to an anonymous bidder for a gobsmacking $137,500.

While it didn’t command the seven figures that Michael Jackson’s red-and-black Thriller jacket did in 2010, six figures is nothing to sneeze at. It’s far greater than the $40k-$60k it was expected to fetch.

Compared to the other items sold at the ‘Icons and Idols: Rock ‘n’ Roll’ auction, Cobain’s shabby sweater was a bargain. Elvis Presley’s gold-leaf piano went for $600,000 and John Lennon’s Gibson acoustic guitar sold for $2,410,000.


The L.A. auction house Julien’s says it obtained the vintage Manhattan brand sweater — a blend of acrylic, mohair, and Lycra, featuring a burn hole and some discoloration — from “a close friend of the Cobain family.”

As if that bit of celebrity memorabilia hoarding weren’t disturbing enough, the auction house also put a lock of Cobain’s hair up for bid. The hair had been given by Courtney Love to a doll-maker.

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