Late September of 1991, September 24 to be specific, a young Washington state band named Nirvana released their major label debut, Nevermind. Just six days after the album’s release, well before anyone knew the record would go on to forever be a part of the pop culture landscape, Kurt Cobain, Dave Grohl and Kris Novoselic took the stage at the iconic and incredibly intimate J.C. Dobbs venue in Philadelphia.
That October 1 show is now being celebrated in the most 2022 way possible — with exclusive NFTs of photos taken that night by photographer Faith West. The NFTs will be available February 20 to commemorate Cobain’s fifty-fifth birthday, through Pop Legendz, a company founded by West.
A press release explains their upcoming availability and pricing. “Four unique one-of-a-kind NFTs made from 10 never-before-seen images have been selected to be sold, auction-style, with bids beginning at 67 Ethereum (currently valued at a quarter million US dollars). These buyers will also receive a framed 16″ x 24″ fine-art print of one image, signed by the photographer. Additionally, these 10 images will be auctioned off individually as NFTs, both in black-and-white and in acid-washed color versions.”
There is another tier available for fans of the band. ” 200 lucky Nirvana fans have the ability to purchase 14 artworks as NFTs, crafted from three images, at $499 (US) each, plus 100 copies of each of 21 still images will be sold for $99 (US) each, in both black and white and acid-washed color.”
Most importantly. 50 percent of all proceeds from both sales benefit The Trevor Project, a non-profit assisting at-risk LGBTQ+ youth to prevent suicides. And part of the remainder of the proceeds will benefit Grid Alternatives, bringing solar power to working poor families; tackling both climate change and income inequality.
Imagine it’s October 1, 1991 and you walk into a tiny bar that holds 200 people, maximum, the kind of place where you are going to become best friends with the people standing next to you cause there is no choice. And on this night you are seeing a double bill of punk heroes the Melvins and Nirvana.
You know very little about Nirvana, though if you are in the bar this night you might have heard their Sub Pop debut Bleach. But given Nevermind had only come out the week before chances are you hadn’t yet heard “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” “Lithium,” “Come As You Are” or any of the songs that would still be dominating alternative radio decades later.
West’s photos take you into J.C. Dobbs on that night and show you what it was like to see the band as they were then — young, hungry, unaware of the stardom that was awaiting them.