Parts of John Lennon's Guitar Could Fetch $63,000 at Auction

The Beatle's "Paperback Writer" guitar is also going to auction and could garner close to $1 million

John Lennon performing in 1963. Parts of the guitar the Beatle bought in Germany in 1960 are going up for auction. Credit: Photoshot/Getty

The pick guard and machine heads from John Lennon's 1958 Rickenbacker 325 Capri guitar are going to auction in London on November 23rd, and auctioneer Tracks believes the musical miscellany will fetch as much as £40,000 (a little more than US $63,000). The reason why mere pieces of a guitar are so valuable, according to The New York Times, is because the instrument in question was the one that Lennon bought in Hamburg, Germany in 1960 and used through mid-February 1964.

Lennon played the guitar during the Beatles' famous stint in Hamburg alongside gigs at Liverpool's Cavern Club. The guitar was also used at the recording sessions for the band's first two LPs and early singles, on The Ed Sullivan Show and on tour in Britain, Europe and the U.S. Lennon retired the guitar when Rickenbacker gave him an updated model.

In June 1972, the Beatle took the guitar to Ronnie's Music Shop in Farmingdale, New York, where Ron DeMarino, who is now auctioning the parts, fixed it up. The shop owner asked Lennon to keep the parts. As part of the auction, DeMarino is offering photos of the guitar as it arrived, a copy of the invoice for the repair ($1,749.45, covering work on another guitar and items Lennon bought at the store) and an Apple Records check stub showing that the Beatle paid up.

In addition to the guitar parts, Tracks is also auctioning a complete guitar that once belonged to Lennon, specifically the 1963 Gretsch 6120 Lennon played during the 1966 session for "Paperback Writer." A cousin of Lennon's, David Birch, is selling the instrument and expecting to get £400,000 to £600,000 (about $635,000 to $952,000). Tracks is also offering the Windsor White Victor Supremus banjo that belonged to Lennon's Quarrymen bandmate, which could garner £10,000 to £15,000 (about $16,000 to $24,000)