Lost John Lennon Guitar Sells For $2.85 Million And Breaks Record

The instrument was used during the recording of The Beatles’ 1965 album ‘Help!’

Julien’s Auctions has sold John Lennon’s long-lost 1964 Framus Hootenanny acoustic guitar. The 12-string instrument had not been seen in public for more than 50 years.

READ ALSO: The Search Is Over: Paul McCartney Reunites With Stolen Bass Guitar After 51 Years

Lost Treasure

Lennon’s guitar, played by both him and George Harrison, was featured for The Beatles’ 1965 albums Help! and Rubber Soul.

Seen in photographs during the recording sessions, producer George Martin wrote in his notes that Lennon and Harrison used the Hootenanny in the song “You’ve Got to Hide Your Love Away.”

George Harrison and John Lennon with the Framus Hootenanny
George Harrison and John Lennon with the 12-string guitar | Photo courtesy of Julien’s Auctions

The instrument can also be heard in the songs “It’s Only Love,” “I’ve Just Seen a Face,” and “Help!” In the Rubber Soul album, they used the guitar in “Girl” and “Norwegian Wood (This Bird Has Flown).”

According to the auction house, Lennon gifted the guitar to Gordon Waller of Peter & Gordon at the end of 1965. Waller then gave the guitar to one of his road managers

Decades later, the instrument was rediscovered in an attic. The new owners were living in the rural British countryside and in the middle of a move. They decided to put it up for auction, where it was given an estimate of $800,000.

John Lennon's 1964 Framus Hootenanny acoustic guitar
John Lennon’s 1964 Framus Hootenanny | Photo courtesy of Julien’s Auctions

Successful Auction

Lennon’s Framus Hootenanny guitar was part of Julien’s Auctions’ two-day Music Icons sale. The auction also featured items belonging to Prince, The Rolling Stones, Elvis Presley, and many more.

The successful buyer obtained it through a telephone bid at the Hard Rock Cafe in New York. The auction house stated that it is now the fifth most expensive guitar ever sold. It’s also the band’s highest-selling guitar at auction in Beatles history.

Other instruments that fetched hefty prices include Bob Dylan and Robbie Robertson’s 1965 Fender Telecaster ($650,000) and Jerry Garcia’s Travis Bean electric guitar ($520,000).

Fender Telecaster and Travis Bean electric guitars
Fender Telecaster and Travis Bean electric guitars | Image via Instagram @juliens_auctions

Julien’s Auctions wrote that the sale of Lennon’s guitar is a “poignant reminder of the enduring legacy of the Beatles and the indelible mark they left on the world.”

“It is a testament to the power of music to transcend time and connect people across generations. The guitar may have found a new home, but its melody will continue to echo in the hearts and minds of music lovers everywhere.”

Banner photos courtesy of Julien’s Auctions.

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