Beatles Guitar Going Up for Auction

Both John Lennon and George Harrison played custom-built VOX in 1960s

Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, John Lennon, and George Harrison of The Beatles.
John Downing/Getty Images
March 21, 2013 9:55 AM ET

A custom-built VOX guitar played by not just one, but two Beatles around the time of Magical Mystery Tour will be up for auction this May, Reuters reports.

Expected to sell between $200,000 and $300,000 at Julien's Auctions, John Lennon and George Harrison both played the guitar: The latter used it to practice "I Am the Walrus" in 1967, while the former played it during a video taping for "Hello, Goodbye," later that year.

The Beatles' 'Love Me Do' Hits the Public Domain in Europe

The centerpiece of the upcoming "Music Icons" auction set for May 18th in New York, Julien's Auctions said the guitar was given to Apple Records electronics engineer Yanni "Magic Alex" Mardas in 1967. Julien's executive director, Martin Nolan, called the instrument "one of the most historical pieces of music memorabilia" ever offered by the house.

The auction will also include a few other Beatles-related items including a copy of their 1963 debut Please Please Me, signed by all four members (estimated price: $30,000 to $50,000), and a copy of Lennon's 1964 illustrated story book In His Own Write, also signed by the band (estimated up to about $30,000).

The auction will also include items and memorabilia from Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, the Grateful Dead, David Bowie and David Cassidy. Before the VOX guitar makes its way to NYC, it will be on display at the Museum of Style Icons in Newbridge, Ireland.

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

Music Main Next

blog comments powered by Disqus
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.


We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Don't Dream It's Over”

Crowded House | 1986

Early in the sessions for Crowded House's debut album, the band and producer Mitchell Froom were still feeling each other out, and at one point Froom substituted session musicians for the band's Paul Hester and Nick Seymour. "At the time it was a quite threatening thing," Neil Finn told Rolling Stone. "The next day we recorded 'Don't Dream It's Over,' and it had a particularly sad groove to it — I think because Paul and Nick had faced their own mortality." As for the song itself, "It was just about on the one hand feeling kind of lost, and on the other hand sort of urging myself on — don't dream it's over," Finn explained.

More Song Stories entries »