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Frances Bean Cobain loses Kurt Cobain's iconic 'MTV Unplugged' guitar in divorce settlement

The iconic 1959 Martin D-18E guitar that Kurt Cobain played for Nirvana's MTV Unplugged is now in the possession of Frances' ex-husband Isaiah Silva
UPDATED JAN 16, 2020
(Source:Getty Images)
(Source:Getty Images)

After being tangled up in a messy divorce the last two years, Frances Bean Cobain and ex-husband Isaiah Silva have finally reached a property settlement agreement, according to TMZ.

But what should catch the attention of Nirvana fans old and young is one particular artifact which has been the bone of contention during the separation. The iconic 1959 Martin D-18E guitar that Kurt Cobain played on Nirvana’s MTV Unplugged, which had been passed through the hands of various family members, is now in the possession of Silva as per the terms of the agreement. 

The rightful owner of the guitar had long been a point of contention throughout the former couple’s divorce proceedings. Silva claimed Frances gave the guitar to him as a present. For her part, Frances denied ever gifting the instrument to him. 

In addition to its sheer monetary value — it’s estimated to be worth millions of dollars — what also makes the guitar rare is the fact that it was only one of about 300 made at the time and supposedly the last one Kurt Cobain played before his tragic passing. It was also reportedly meant to stay within the family.

Frances' mother Cortney Love also seems to take her daughter's side. “It’s not his to take,” Courtney Love previously told TMZ when asked about Silva’s claims to the instrument. She also went on to call the guitar a “treasured heirloom” and said Frances “never planned” on giving it away for good.

According to the TMZ report, Frances “wants to move on” from the divorce, even if that means giving up the guitar and all the sentimentality attached to it. Frances — herself an aspiring musician and executive producer of HBO's documentary 'Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck' — isn’t walking away from the divorce completely empty-handed, though, as she gets to keep the house she and Silva bought together.