The cover of Nevermind, a 1991 Nirvana album that would have helped redefine rock music.
That baby – now 30-year-old Spencer Elden – is suing Nirvana for child exploitation and pornography, saying the band knowingly distributed the photo of Elden naked as a baby and profited from it.
He is seeking $150,000 in damages against each of the defendants, who include band members, Kurt Cobain’s estate, photographer Kirk Weddle, Universal Music, Geffen Records, Warner Records and MCA Music.
The cover photo was taken by Weddle, who was a friend of Elden’s father. The lawsuit accuses Weddle of producing a “sexually graphic” photo of Elden. He adds that initially there was resistance to showing Elden’s genitals on the album cover and the plan was to put a sticker on it.
“The sticker, however, was never incorporated into the album cover,”, states the process.
Elden’s parents also never signed a document authorizing the use of the image, and no one in the family received any compensation.
“Spencer’s true identity and legal name are forever tied to the commercial sexual exploitation he experienced as a minor,” wrote Robert Lewis, Elden’s attorney, in the lawsuit.