Top 10: Paul McCartney memorabilia
1) The guitar McCartney was taught on - £280,000
A Rex acoustic guitar sold for £280,000 at a Cooper Owen auction in 2006. The guitar belonged to Ian James, a friend of McCartney’s from the Liverpool Institute grammar school. James came from a musical family and taught Paul his first set of chords during the 1950s.
James has claimed that this guitar was present on the day McCartney first met John Lennon at the Woolton Church fete. James has also said that it is possible that Lennon and George Harrison may have played the guitar that day.
2) Yesterday piano - £150,000
In April, 2011, an Evestaff pianette used by McCartney when he first composed Yesterday was sold for £150,000 at a Fame Bureau auction.
The piano belonged to Alma Cogan, a friend of McCartney’s.
McCartney famously composed the melody to Yesterday in a dream and when he awoke he was so convinced he’d stolen the tune that he visited Cogan for her opinion. His working lyrics for the song were “Scrambled eggs, oh my baby how I love your legs”. Cogan confirmed that the song was indeed original.
3) Getting Better handwritten lyrics - £161,000
In 1994, Paul McCartney’s handwritten lyrics for Getting Better were sold at a Sotheby’s auction in London for £161,000.
The song was composed by Lennon and McCartney for the 1967 album, Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band.
4) Maxwell’s Silver Hammer working lyrics - $192,000 – Christie’s
This page of working lyrics is for the song Maxwell’s Silver Hammer from the 1969 album, Abbey Road. Written in McCartney’s hand, these lyrics omit the last four lines of the second verse and the third verse of the released version.
The sheet of lyrics shows several alterations including a line “Maxwell plays the ass again”, which has been substituted with “is an ass” and finally “a fool”.
These handwritten lyrics were sold at a Christie’s auction in New York in 2006 for $192,000.
5) Mrs Evans’ notebook - £111,500
A notebook belonging to a Mrs Lily Evans was sold at Sotheby’s in 1998 for £111,500. Mrs Evans is the widow of Mal Evans, a road manager for The Beatles.
The notebook contains Paul McCartney’s handwritten draft lyrics for Hey Jude and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. It also contains notes, sketches and scribbles by Lennon, Starr and Harrison.
6) Rosie Brooks Gibson guitar sculpture - $175,500
A 10ft tall guitar sculpture designed by cartoonist and illustrator Rosie Brooks was sold for $175,700 by Julien’s Auctions in 2007. The guitar was signed by Paul McCartney who is quoted in the auction catalogue saying “I just fancied playing a big guitar!”
The winning bidder was required to donate the guitar to Great Ormand Street Hospital where it would be displayed alongside a plaque with the winning bidder’s name.
7) Hand Painted 1964 Texan Model Epiphone - $81,600
In 2007 a 1964 Texan Model Epiphone guitar owned by Paul McCartney was sold for $81,600 by Julien’s Auctions.
The guitar features hand painted flowers and a heart and is signed by McCartney in bold green ink.
8) Surfboard - £40,000
A surfboard that was painted by Paul McCartney was donated to an auction to raise money for the charity Surfers Against Sewage in 2008.
On the surfboard, McCartney has painted a beach landscape dotted with red flowers.
It was sold by Phillips de Pury in 2009 for £40,000.
9) Rupert The Bear book - £25,000
A 1948 Rupert The Bear book owned by McCartney as a child was sold by Cooper Owen auction house in 2005 for £25,000.
The book features the earliest known McCartney signature, where he has written his name, and his brother’s name (Mike) on the inside title page alongside his address and various other scribbles.
The book was used in the promo video for McCartney’s single We All Stand Together, where he is seen finding the book in an attic, and flicking through it before the song starts.
10) Signed & used bass guitar - $29,875
This Hofner bass guitar was used by McCartney during a September 11 benefit concert photo shoot.
McCartney bought his first Hofner Bass guitar in Hamburg in 1961 and continues to favour Hofner guitars to this day.
This example was sold for $29,875 by Heritage Auction Galleries in 2005.
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