Hofner bass guitar (circa 1959) originally signed in black ink by John Lennon, Paul McCartney and George Harrison on June 6, 1964. Absolutely unique, and the only surviving guitar signed by multiple members of The Beatles during the 1960s. In very good condition, with dings to the body and surface loss along the edges. Originally offered by Christie's in South Kensington, London, on May 29, 1997, as lot 383.
The autographs were procured by Oscar Rexhauser, a member of one of The Beatles' support acts, The Hot Jumpers, at Velinghal in the Dutch village of Blokker outside Amsterdam, where The Beatles performed two concerts on June 6, 1964. Besides Lennon, McCartney and Harrison, the instrument also includes autographs of Chet Atkins, Jim Reeves, Chubby Checker, Cliff Richard, and Joe Frazier all dating to the 1960s. Rexhauser later etched over the ink signatures of the three Beatles as well as the other artists as a means of preserving the autographs. Nonetheless, the guitar, with a later replaced neck, is the only known surviving guitar signed by The Beatles (sans Ringo Starr) during the 1960s. As Jimmy Nicol was acting as the group's substitute drummer during Ringo's recovery from a serious bout of tonsillitis, he was not asked to sign the Hofner.
The only other documented example known to have been signed by all four group members was destroyed in a flood many years ago. Much like the Hofner, the lost guitar was also signed by other performers, most notably The Rolling Stones. Additionally, a Rickenbacker guitar purported to have been signed by all four Beatles in Baltimore on September 13, 1964, was many years later found to have been signed by road manager Neil Aspinall; the story perpetuated by none other than the late Beatles publicist Derek Taylor in his book Fifty Years Adrift.
It's actually the only Beatles-signed guitar known to exist. The other one died in a mudslide in Malibu in about 2004.
It was not "embossed" like this one...*Sigh*
Mudslide?! Oh no! I haven't heard that story before. That might have ruined my day guys.
Yep. It was an acoustic signed by all four Beatles, some of the Rolling Stones...maybe others. I've never seen it. I heard it sold in the later 1990s in the $60,000s.
Im sorry but i wouldnt want that bass other than maybe for the value of just the instrument. When the owner etched over the sigs, it completelly ruined it for me. To me its like its almost not an autograph anymore. Im sure it will still go for a mint, but that just ruined it for me. I can understand wanting to preserve the graphs forever, but i would have bought like a glass sealed case for it or something. Oh well, to each his own
I was thinking the same thing. its like taking a 1927 yankees team ball, and writing over the signatures.
It is a true shame.
I read somewhere that the reason he didn't just lacquer over it is because it would affect the tone of the bass.
I know hindsight is 20/20, but this guy was blind as a bat.
I agree with you Chris. I see no value in the autographs but the instrument itself is cool.
What did the guitar sell for at Christie's in 1997, Bobby?
I don't have the 1997 price but the provenance is clearly listed on Christies website when they resold this Hofner in 2003 for $ 7,170. THE BEATLES SIGNED GUITAR
The Hofner is up to $11,682 +20% buyers fees...
This just closed at $14,150 +20%...$16,980 total.