Published: December 21, 2010
Heritage Auctions realized stellar prices and near-perfect sell-through rates on the $1.2 million fine and vintage guitar and stringed instrument portion of its Saturday, November 13, music and entertainment auction.
The section, which saw celebrity rock and roll guitarists and some of the nation’s top dealers and collectors in the audience, had bidding on almost 500 guitars, which sold 99½ percent by value and 98.7 percent by lot †numbers that exceeded in-house expectations.
Two names reigned supreme with collectors: Gibson and Fender. A choice Gibson 1961 ES-335 cherry guitar, #16858, with its original hard case, led the category at $25,095.
Another top Gibson was a classic 1958 ES 335 sunburst electric, #A27626. This very nice unbound 335 had 100 percent of its original make and its original hard-shell case, and sold at $23,900. That price was equaled by a 1962 Fender Stratocaster sunburst, #86021, a near perfect example of an early 1960s Strat.
Fender Stratocaster sunburst electric guitars were easily the most popular overall make of the auction, with five †including the one mentioned †of the top ten lots in the section being one of these instruments. Among these were a 1958, #26872, with original paint, that realized $22,705; a 1957, #17316, all original, that went for $19,120; a 1964, #L46453, 100 percent original, which finished at $18,523; and a 1961, #69639, that rose to $15,535.
When it comes to acoustic guitars there is, perhaps, no name more desired than Martin. A 1940 Martin D-18 natural acoustic guitar, #75667, 100 percent original, was the top acoustic of the sale, bringing $17,925, while a 1955 Martin D-28 natural acoustic guitar, #147141, realized $13,145 and a 1935 Martin 000-28 natural guitar, #61677 †a rare example of this important guitar †brought $13,145.
Further highlights include a 1965 Gibson Firebird VII sunburst electric guitar, #256742, that realized $19,120; a 1956 Gibson Les Paul standard all gold electric guitar, #63899, with the rare wraparound tailpiece, which was discontinued in 1955 when the Tune-O-Matic Bridge version was introduced, that brought $17,328; and the 1960 Fender precision bass, owned and played by legendary “slap” bassist and Elvis Presley band member Bill Black, which finished the day at $10,158.
All prices include the 19½ percent buyer’s premium. For information, 800-872-6467 or www.ha.com .
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