Spencer Elden was the baby that took the famous photo for Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind’ album 17 years ago and his parents were paid $200. He recently recreated the photo at the Rose Bowl Aquatic Center in Pasadena, California. This is the same place where the original photo was taken.
Useless: Nevermind is the second studio album by the American rock band Nirvana, released on September 24, 1991.
The Nevermind album cover shows a baby swimming toward a US dollar bill on a fishhook. According to Cobain, he conceived the idea while watching a television program on water births with Grohl. Cobain mentioned it to Geffen's art director Robert Fisher. Fisher found some stock footage of underwater births but they were too graphic for the record company. Also, the stock house that controlled the photo of a swimming baby that they subsequently settled on wanted $7,500 a year for its use, so instead Fisher sent a photographer to a pool for babies to take pictures. Five shots resulted and the band settled on the image of a three-month-old infant named Spencer Elden, the son of the photographer's friend Rick Elden. However, there was some concern because Elden's penis was visible in the image. Geffen prepared an alternate cover without the penis, as they were afraid that it would offend people, but relented when Cobain made it clear that the only compromise he would accept was a sticker covering the penis that would say "If you're offended by this, you must be a closet pedophile."