Los Angeles: Music icon Jimi Hendrix’s Japanese sunburst electric guitar from the early 1960s has been sold for USD 216,000 at an auction here Sunday. When Jimi Hendrix used the guitar, he was an R&B sideman and fledgling rocker in New York City. Jimi Hendrix lived for only for a little over 27 years (born November 7, 1942 and died September 18, 1970), but still many consider him the greatest instrumentalist of all times.
According to the ‘Rolling Stone’ magazine, the guitar made nearly four times more than its pre-auction estimate of USD 50,000. This just goes to show the popularity of Hendrix. The man started playing the electric guitar after he was discharged from the US Army in 1962. The late musician remained in possession of the guitar for almost four years.
“This particular guitar sheds light on some of the earliest playing by Jimi Hendrix. The guitar is unprecedented as it relates to its historical value. Never before have we acquired a guitar of this magnitude. The guitar is partnered with particularly thorough provenance and value,” Dame Brigitte Kruse of GWS Auctions said in a statement.
There were many other notable items sold during the auctions. There was a 14K gold ring owned by Elvis Presley (USD 22,500). A pair of Prince’s custom-made purple boots fetched USD 13,000 and one of Michael Jackson’s sequined black jackets got USD 20,000.
However, it was the Hendrix guitar that drew the maximum bidding. It seemed that some of his fans were bent on getting the guitar. Hendix died from barbiturate-related asphyxia on September 18, 1970, at age 27. However, there are many who say that it was his addiction for a number of drugs including cocaine that led to his death.
Holly George-Warren of Rolling Stone once wrote about the instrumentalist: “Hendrix pioneered the use of the instrument (guitar) as an electronic sound source. Players before him had experimented with feedback and distortion, but Hendrix turned those effects and others into a controlled, fluid vocabulary every bit as personal as the blues with which he began.”