Sgt. Peppers gnome sells for big bucks at auction

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BEVERLY HILLS, Calif. – Two signed rarities from the most influential years of The Beatles took top lot honors in Heritage Auctions’ April 19 Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Auction in Beverly Hills, California: A Garden Gnome Cover Prop from Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, signed by all four members sold for $42,500; and a signed copy of Meet The Beatles, obtained Feb. 9, 1964 by George Harrison’s doctor, sold for $47,500.

“The market for signed Beatles memorabilia is hot and the most unique discoveries are finding their way to Heritage,” said Garry Schrum, Music Consignment Director at Heritage Auctions. “Collectors want one-of-a-kind pieces and you can’t find many things as unique as an actual cover prop from Sgt. Pepper’s.”

The 20-inch tall cardboard cutout was chosen as a memento by an assistant to cover photographer Michael Cooper, and it was signed by the Beatles immediately following the shoot. It was auctioned, framed along with an unopened stereo copy of the LP.

A 2007 Fender Custom Shop Telecaster, designed for Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards, sold for $32,500 to lead a selection of choice musical instruments. A 1991 US-made white on black Fender Stratocaster electric guitar, stage played and signed by “The Boss” Bruce Springsteen, ended at $30,000. And a Baldwin Model R Grand Piano, owned and played by Liberace, hammered for $27,500, against a $15,000 estimate.

Among the selection of albums signed by giants of rock and roll, a rare copy of Led Zeppelin III, signed by all four original members, sold for $18,750.

Additional highlights include, but are not limited by:

A Beatles Signed Please Please Me LP Obtained by a British Newspaper Reporter on October 31, 1964: Realized: $23,750.

A Rare Early Version “Penny Lane” Acetate by The Beatles, without the trumpet solo: Realized: $3,500.

A Beatles Fully Autographed Cavern Club Booklet, Including Both Ringo Starr and Pete Best: Realized: $6,875.

A Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimmie Vaughan Signed Fender Electric Guitar: Realized: $7,500.

A Rare Allman Joys Signed Photograph, signed by the Allman Bros.: Realized: $4,750.

The original poster art for The Ramones – Rock ‘N’ Roll High School, by William Stout: Realized: $6,875.

Heritage Auctions is the largest auction house founded in the United States and the world’s third largest, with annual sales of more than $900 million, and 900,000+ online bidder members. For more information about Heritage Auctions, and to join and receive access to a complete record of prices realized, with full-color, enlargeable photos of each lot, please visit HA.com.

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