Beatles Rickenbacker To Be Auctioned

The 'I Want To Hold Your Hand' guitar was played by Harrison and Lennon   19-Mar-14

Beatles Rickenbacker To Be Auctioned

A rare 1962 Rickenbacker played by George Harrison and John Lennon will be the highlight of Julien's Auctions' Music Icons 2014 to be held Friday, May 16, 2014 and Saturday, May 17, 2014 at the Hard Rock Café New York located at 1501 Broadway in Times Square. A spokesperson told us, "The 'I Want to Hold Your Hand' Guitar used at the Abbey Road Studios Recording and Rare Beatles Memorabilia Is Fitting Tribute to 50 Years of The Beatles."

Here's the Julien's Auctions press release with the full details:

Fifty years ago this year, a British rock band called The Beatles gave its first American TV performance on "The Ed Sullivan Show" and music history was made. This British invasion instantaneously kicked off a phenomenon that continues to this day with The Beatles who remain the biggest rock band of our time.  In celebration of the 50th Anniversary, the Music Icons auction event will be highlighted by an extraordinary array of Beatles related memorabilia spanning decades of the musical careers of George, Paul, Ringo and John. Most notable is a rare 1962 Rickenbacker 425 guitar purchased in 1963 in Mount Vernon, Illinois by George Harrison while on a two-week visit to see his sister, Louise (serial # BH 439). The guitar was originally purchased at Fenton's Music store and refinished by the owner from a Fireglo finish to the black George requested to match John Lennon's similar Rickenbacker. (Estimate: $400,000-$600,000).

Harrison used the historical Rickenbacker for The Beatles first appearance on the television program Ready Steady Go! in October of 1963 and on the program Thank Your Luck Stars in December of 1963. He also used it during a week-long tour in Sweden. Harrison was photographed with the guitar extensively and the entire band has been photographed posing with the guitar. This is purported to be the only known photograph in existence of all four members of The Beatles holding a single guitar.

George Harrison played the 1962 Rickenbacker 425 in the Abbey Road studios when The Beatles recorded I Want to Hold Your Hand. This song gave The Beatles their now infamous big break in the United States. The same studio session included the recording of "This Boy."

Both George Harrison and John Lennon played this guitar.  Lennon played it backstage at a performance in Glasgow, Scotland on October 5, 1963. A photograph published in an August 1964 issue of Beat Monthly magazine shows Lennon with this very guitar. In the late 1960s or early 1970s Harrison gave this guitar to George Peckham, who had a long association with George Harrison and also Apple. Peckham originally borrowed a guitar from Harrison for his own appearance on Top of the Pops as a rhythm guitarist in the band The Fourmost.  Upon returning it Harrison asked him if he would like to keep a guitar and showed him the Rickenbacker 425 considering is a "great rhythm player."  Peckham kept the guitar on the condition it would never be modified.  The guitar case was given later to Peckham by Noddy Holder of Slade after Holder saw Peckham walking around with the guitar without a case and could not personally bear to see a Beatles guitar carried around without one.

The rare Rickenbacker 425 guitar with exceptional Beatles history is accompanied by two letters from Harrison's office which confirm he gave the guitar to Peckham.  One from Olivia Harrison and the other from Caroline Foxwell,  Harrison's assistant. Also present with the guitar is a letter from Peckham explaining the circumstances of the guitar.  The guitar has also been exhibited at The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum in Cleveland, the GRAMMY Museum in Los Angeles, the John Lennon Museum in Saitama, Japan and the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, Arizona.

Other highlights included in the collection of Beatles memorabilia include a Paul McCartney Used Hofner Bass (Estimate: $30,000-$50,000) circa 1966 with mother-of-pearl pickguard. The left-handed vintage bass was rented by Paul McCartney from Harris Hire in Beckenham,  England on numerous occasions.  The auction will also feature a very rare The Beatles Signed "Beatles '65" Album which was signed circa late 1964-late 1965 (Estimate $200,000-$300,000) The Capitol Records released stereo LP sleeve is signed on the front cover. Paul McCartney signed "Beatles/Paul McCartney/XXX," and Ringo Starr signed "The Beatles/Ringo Starr." George Harrison and John Lennon each signed only their name. The item is housed in a frame with a "Gold" vinyl copy of the record.  This signed album is very rare because The Beatles signed the back of their album sleeves which were generally the early British Parlophone Records releases. When Beatlemania hit, the band was not accessible and therefore signed Capitol released LPs or any Beatles album released after 1964 and signed are extremely difficult to find. This is one of only two known signed copies of the Beatles '65 album still in existence.

John Lennon's Original  Signed Shroud of Tourin Art Work (Estimate $20,000-$30,000) created by the legendary Beatle titled at the top right corner "Shroud of Tourin" will also be offered. The mixed media on unstretched canvas artwork shows the image of a man, who appears to be Lennon, wearing two pairs of glasses and the Batman symbol across his chest.  He has his fists held in front of him and written on his knuckles are the words "love" and "hate" respectively. To the left of the figure is a cross on  a hill with a crown hovering over it, the word "Elvis" in what may be a bowl beneath the cross.

Words and phrases are written across the image in different directions including "Spectacles/wife child love/maijhuana" – "Holy Batman I knew this would happen," and below the drawing of a radio "tune in if you/want."  Signed by John Lennon above the radio and beneath another drawing of a cross on a hill. Also offered will be The Beatles Signed Please Please Me Album Cover (Estimate: $40,000-$50,000) which was signed by all four members of the band. The mono LP was their first Parlophone album released in the United Kingdom in March of 1963.

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