Record-breaking sale of John Lennon’s lost guitar after 50 years fetches $2.85 million

A remarkable piece of music history has been sold for an unprecedented price.

John Lennon and George Harrison, members of the Beatles, utilized the Framus Hootenanny 12-string acoustic guitar during the production of their albums “Help!” and “Rubber Soul” in 1965. This information comes from Julien’s Auctions, a company known for selling items owned by celebrities. Additionally, the guitar made an appearance in outtakes from the Beatles’ comedy film “Help!”

According to the auction house, Lennon obtained the guitar in late 1964 and it was captured in photographs during recording sessions. Handwritten notes from producer George Martin revealed that both Lennon and Harrison utilized the instrument while recording “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away.” Additionally, the guitar was played on various other songs such as “It’s Only Love,” “I’ve Just Seen a Face,” “Girl,” and, of course, “Help!”

In 1965, Lennon gifted the guitar to Gordon Waller, one half of the pop duo Peter & Gordon. At the time, Harrison and Lennon were collaborating on songs for the pair. Waller later passed on the guitar to a manager, who stored it in his attic for many years, allowing this significant piece of music history to become forgotten and neglected.

The guitar’s discovery after more than 50 years was not explicitly explained by the auction house. However, they did mention that musician and “Beatles Gear” author Andy Babiuk has verified its authenticity. The guitar was recognized by its unique characteristics, such as a distinctive wood grain and a swirl of tortoise shell pickguard material.

According to the auction house, the Hootenanny guitar truly stands out with its distinctive sound. When you strum it, you can immediately recognize it as “that” guitar. It effortlessly produces the iconic melodies of Beatles tunes if you know the chords. The Framus guitar, like a time capsule from 1965, serves as a direct connection to those legendary records.

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The guitar was sold at a highly anticipated auction hosted by the iconic Hard Rock Cafe in the vibrant heart of New York City’s Times Square. With a final bid of $2,857,500, this extraordinary instrument has now secured its place as one of the top five most expensive guitars ever sold.

The sale also included the guitar’s case, which the Beatles were also photographed with, along with some Beatles memorabilia, including a DVD of “Help!”

The auction house did not disclose any information about the new owner of the guitar. However, they described the buyer as someone who is now the custodian of a piece of Lennon’s soul. They emphasized that the guitar is a tangible connection to the creative energy that flowed through him and impacted the lives of millions.

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