Signed Beatles contract tops $560,000 at Sotheby's
The original management contract signed between The Beatles and Brian Epstein has sold for more than half a million dollars in London.
Dated October 1, 1962, the contract saw the band appoint Epstein as their manager, responsible for all aspects of the band's fledgling career including concert booking, publicity and even their appearance.
It was the first official document to include the signatures of the final line-up of the band – John, Paul, George and Ringo – and was signed just days before the release of their debut single Love Me Do.
The contract was offered for sale as part of the Sotheby's Rock and Pop memorabilia sale in London, and achieved a price of £365,000 ($567,867).
“Without this contract, and the relationship it represents, it seems inconceivable that the Beatles could have achieved all that they did," said Gabriel Heaton, Sotheby’s Specialist in Books and Manuscripts.
"It took more than inspired musicianship and song-writing to remake popular music. The presentation, direction, and internal harmony of the Beatles all owed a huge amount to Brian Epstein. He was, as Paul McCartney has acknowledged, the Fifth Beatle.”
“I never thought that they would be anything less than the greatest stars in the world – and I mean that," Epstein once said, describing why he wanted to represent the band. "I always knew that they were going to be tremendous … I sensed something big, if it could be at once harnessed and at the same time left untamed.”
Last week another early Beatles contract crossed the block at Heritage Auctions in Dallas – the first recording contract signed by the band.
Dating from their days in Hamburg in 1961, the contract featured the signature of former drummer Pete Best and sold for $93,750.
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