1962 Gibson – The “Long Lost” John Lennon’s Guitar
John Lennon’s guitar 1962 Gibson is missing in the history of the Beatles. He played it for early hits like “I Want to Hold Your Hands”, but it disappeared in 1963 and was quickly replaced. End of story.
That is until about 50 years later, when San Diego man named John McCaw, an amateur guitarist was told his J-160E Gibson looked similar to John Lennon’s guitar. It has been authenticated and will be up for auction later this year. What Mr. McCaw bought for a couple of hundred dollars in the 1970s is now estimated to fetch between $600,000 and $800,000, according to Julien’s Auctions which specializes in entertainment memorabilia, which will sell the guitar in November. Seems like John Lennon’s Guitar will be on the list of the most expensive guitar that ever sold.
“He had no idea he was sitting on a hidden treasure,” said executive director at Julien’s Auctions, Martin Nolan
Mr. McCaw held on the guitar for decades, without modifying or refinishing it. Last year, one of his friends recognized it in a book by Andy Babiuk, a Beatles expert who has authenticated the band’s memorabilia in the past.
Babiuk said in a statement that he was able to match the wood grain in the spruce top of the guitar to photos of the one Lennon played. Also, the serial number matches the original receipt and the guitar has a one of a kind pick guard.
“It is without a doubt one of the most historically important guitars to ever come up for auction,” said Babiuk.
According to Julien’s Auctions, Lennon also used the guitar while recording some of the Beatle’s early songs, such as “P.S. I Love You” and “Love Me Do.” He played it during live performances and this guitar can be seen in a video of the band from 1963.
The guitar will be shown at two exhibitions this summer, first at the L.B.J. Presidential Library in Austin, Tex. (from Saturday to June 29), then at the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles (July 2 to Sept. 7). It will be on public display at Julien’s Auctions from Nov. 2-6 before the auction on Nov. 6 and 7.