It’s been three decades since legendary grunge band Nirvana released their album topped the charts No matter. It received a Grammy nomination for Best Alternative Music Album. And their hit “Smells Like Teen Spirit” propelled the Seattle-based band to stardom.
The emblematic cover of the album of no matter featured a naked baby swimming underwater as it chased a dollar bill hanging from a hook. This baby is now an adult. And he has a lot to say about his experience with the fame he has received from the cover.
“Nevermind” was controversial from the start
The now-deceased leader Kurt Cobain was the mastermind of the no matter album cover. He was said to have been inspired by a documentary he watched about underwater births. The photo of the baby was meant to represent a symbol of capitalism as the child runs after the floating dollar.
Variety reported that the author of the biography Come As You Are: The Story of Nirvana claimed the record company wanted to use a different image. Cobain would have insisted on the current version. He said: “The only modification he would consider making was covering the infant’s penis with a sticker that read, ‘If this offends you, you must be a closet pedophile. “”
Geffen Records accepted the photo. The album art has become an integral part of pop culture history. no matter was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2018.
Who is the baby in the “Nevermind” blanket?
At just four months old, Spencer Elden rose to fame. Her parents allowed her image to be used for the album cover. They received $ 200 from photographer Kirk Weddle, who was a family friend.
Elden’s chest bears a tattoo of the no matter emblem. He also recreated the photo as an adult. Dressed in a swimsuit, he posed several times underwater for the group’s commemorative birthdays.
In 2016, as she celebrated Nirvana’s 25th birthday, the cover star took a positive stance. He told the New York Post: “It’s weird that I did this for five minutes when I was 4 months old, and it became this really iconic image.” Elden explained, “It’s cool but weird to be a part of something so important that I can’t even remember it.”
According to Artnet, Elden’s enthusiasm for being known as Baby Nirvana changed when he asked the group to participate in his art exhibition. They did not respond to his offer. Aspiring artist himself, who does not collect copyright in the photo, he wanted to be treated with more respect.
The baby “Nirvana” files a complaint
As Forbes recently reported, “Baby Nirvana ‘Nevermind’ is still chasing that dollar.” Elden claims that “the group promised to cover her genitals with a sticker.” However, “the sticker was never incorporated on the album cover”.
Now 30, Elden has filed a lawsuit claiming his nude image on the cover of the iconic album constituted child pornography. Her lawyer said: “The inclusion of currency in the photo makes the baby appear ‘like a sex worker.’ The lawsuit claims it was “done intentionally to increase album sales.”
Cobain’s estate, surviving band members Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic, former drummer Chad Channing, artistic director Robert Fisher and Widdle are all named in the lawsuit seeking $ 150,000 from each accused.
Apparently the old album cover baby feels exploited by the band, he told TMZ: “I’m just asking the band to do what they should have done 30 years ago and to remove my genitals from the image out of respect for my privacy. ” Elden said.
There has not yet been a formal response to the claims of former band members or their associates.
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