When the “Nirvana” rock band thought of the idea of a baby underwater reaching for a dollar bill, they might have seen that moment to be some sort of epiphany. Little did they know that their artistic idea was going to cause more trouble than they could have bargained for.
Three decades have passed since the debut of their 1991 album “Nevermind.” Spencer Elden, the man whose baby photos were used on the album cover, now sees things in a different light.
He has come out to sue the estate of Kurt Cobain, demised leader of the band as well as the ex-members, for using his photo as the cover art.
However, David Grohl, the longest-running drummer for the former band and current frontman for the Foo Fighters has a reply for him.
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David Grohl’s Reply
Grohl responded to the debacle when he was posed with the question during an interview with The Sunday Times Magazine.
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The singer hinted that since the issue started, he had given changing the cover art a few thoughts.
“I have many ideas of how we should alter that cover, but we’ll see what happens,” he told the news media. “We’ll let you know. I’m sure we’ll come up with something good.”
Speaking about his view on the claims Elden made, the current “Foo Fighters” leader said, “I think that there’s much more to look forward to and much more to life than getting bogged down in those kinds of things. And, fortunately, I don’t have to do the paperwork.”
The Reason For the Lawsuit
Per reports, Elden alleged that his image was used as an example of child pornography and sexual exploitation. He also purported that his parents never agreed to allow “Nirvana” to use his photo in such a manner.
Elden further aired his grievances by filing a complaint with the Los Angeles Federal court some months ago.
In the complaint, he claimed that his “identity and legal name are forever tied to the commercial sexual exploitation he experienced as a minor, which has been distributed and sold worldwide from the time he was a baby to the present day.”
The lawsuit also stated that the defendants “knowingly produced, possessed, and advertised commercial child pornography depicting Spencer, and they knowingly received value in exchange for doing so. … Despite this knowledge, defendants failed to take reasonable steps to protect Spencer and prevent his widespread sexual exploitation and image trafficking.”
Many have voiced their support for his action; just as many have tagged Elden’s lawsuit as comical and manipulative.
Elden’s Lawyers Vows Not To Stop The Case
With the 30th-anniversary re-release of “Nevermind” scheduled for November 12. Elden’s legal aid once again came out to state their claim once again, via US Today.
“Today, like each year on this date, our client Spencer Elden has had to brace himself for renewed unwanted attention from the media and fans alike throughout the world,” his lawyers told the news outlet. “This is a choice that he has never had.”
They also disclosed the legal battle is still ongoing to ensure that their client takes back his privacy and dignity.
“We implore the NIRVANA defendants to right the wrongs of their past, by acknowledging the harm they have perpetrated and redacting the image of Mr. Elden’s genitalia from further reproductions of “Nevermind” because behind every cover is a person pleading for their privacy back,” they voiced.
Currently, pre-orders for the reissue of the album still have Elden’s baby picture as its cover art, and it’s uncertain if any changes will be made soon.
Elden Seeks Compensation From ‘Nirvana’
In his lawsuit, Elden stated that he wants $150,000 from each of the 17 defendants involved in the project or unfixed damages to be decided at trial inclusive of his attorney fees.
He also sought for an injunction to stop all those involved from engaging in the acts described in his claim.
Elden had earlier revealed in 2016 his view on his picture as the cover art. “It’s a trip. Everyone involved in the album has tons and tons of money,” he told Time magazine.
“I feel like I’m the last little bit of grunge rock. I’m living in my mom’s house and driving a Honda Civic.” “It’s hard not to get upset when you hear how much money was involved, “he added.
“I go to a baseball game and think about it; Man, everybody at this baseball game has probably seen my little baby penis. I feel like I got part of my human rights revoked.”
Elden’s parents were reportedly given only $200 for his pictures while “Nevermind” has sold over 30 million copies worldwide.