In the end “Jimbo,” Stevie Ray Vaughan’s first guitar, sold for $250,000.00 and was the highlight at Heritage Aucitons April 15, 2018 Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Signature Auction.
In its other notable auction sales, an a Elvis Presley Concert Poster (1955), extremely rare, sold for $42,500.00; Hendrix photo negatives at $40,000.00; the remaining parts of a smashed-up Pete Townshend guitar went for $30,000.00 and $17,500 for an unused Beatles concert ticket.
Here are the photos and detailed descriptions Heritage provided for the items mentioned above:
“Jimbo”, iconic Blues-Rock guitar maestro Stevie Ray Vaughan’s first professional-grade guitar. This is the instrument with which he made his very first studio recordings, and served as his primary stage guitar during the formative years of his career. The 1951 Fender No-caster (sometimes referred to as a Broadcaster), serial number 41075, with an ash body (originally featuring a natural finish, though removed later by Vaughan in shop class at school), was acquired by Stevie in his youth from his brother and founder of the Fabulous Thunderbirds, Jimmie Vaughan, who has carved “Jimbo” into the back of the body. Stevie has likewise scratched his own name lightly on the headstock beneath the tuners. As Stevie, a player in the same league as guitar titans Jimi Hendrix and Jimmy Page, has been inducted to both the Rock & Roll and Blues Hall[s] of Fame, the immense history of this piece cannot be overstated.
According to a story from Stevie’s longtime friend and roadie Cutter Brandenburg (printed in a 2006 issue of Guitar World magazine), the guitar was gifted to the younger Vaughan in 1966 when he was 12 years of age at the request of mutual friend – and fellow fixture of the Austin Blues scene – Doyle Bramhall, who had come upon the brothers arguing. Apparently, Stevie was in the habit of borrowing Jimmie’s guitars without asking permission. Bramhall’s solution? Give the guitar to Stevie so that perhaps he’d leave Jimmie’s other instruments alone. Jimmie saw wisdom in the idea, and so young Stevie came to possess his first professional-quality guitar.
“Jimbo” is the guitar with which Stevie paid his dues, developing his signature style on club stages in the late-1960s into 1971. It’s been said that in this period Stevie and “Jimbo” were inseparable, with the young virtuoso even sleeping with the Fender in his clutches. He played the guitar in several of his early bands, including garage outfit Southern Distributor, Liberation – a 10-piece horn band playing a mix of Top 40 and Rock from Chicago to Hendrix, and Lincoln, featuring Hendrix-influenced singer Christian de-Plicque. It wasn’t until sometime in 1971 that Vaughan let the guitar go. He traded it to North Texas music teacher Geoff Appold for a red Epiphone, because some of Stevie’s idols played Epiphone guitars. When he and Appold crossed paths years later, Stevie inquired about “Jimbo”, and learned the guitar had been traded. In a 1989 interview with Timothy White, Stevie reminisced about the long lost guitar: “[Jimmie] gave me a ’51 Tele, a cross between a Broadcaster and a Tele that I rebuilt and ended up letting someone talk me into selling and I’m still kicking myself! Still looking for it, by the way! So if somebody finds a guitar that says ‘Jimbo’ on the back and it’s the right one, it’s the real deal – you can come rape me for it, or my pocketbook anyway!”
The guitar ended up in a Dallas recording studio, where it resided for many years. When the studio closed in the 1970s, one of the session player – a friend of the consignor – negotiated for the guitar in settlement of what he was owed. The consignor, also a guitar player, used the guitar from 1988 until 2005 when he purchased Jimbo.
Included with the guitar are two CD copies of early Stevie Ray Vaughan live recordings – all featuring this guitar – that have remained unreleased and unheard by the public. One of the two is a live set from Vaughan’s early Jazz-Rock band Liberation. An eleven-song set of covers including “Whole Lotta Love,” “25 or 6 to 4,” and “The Star Spangled Banner,” this set is the earliest known Stevie ray Vaughan live recording. Hard shell guitar case included.
The GRAMMY Museum, Los Angeles, 2010 – 2014. At Jimmie Vaughan’s request, “Jimbo” was displayed at the museum beside Stevie’s iconic Stratocaster, “Number One.”
“Pride and Joy: The Texas Blues of Stevie Ray Vaughan.” The GRAMMY Museum, Los Angeles, June 11, 2014 – April 18, 2015. It then continued to be displayed at GRAMMY exhibits in Minneapolis, Mississippi, and Austin.
Sold for $250,000.00
Elvis Presley WSM Grand Ole Opry City Auditorium Concert Poster (1955). Extremely Rare. Boxing style window card printed in red and blue on card stock for an “All Star Jamboree In Person” in Raleigh, NC, on Thu. May 19. The poster lists the headline acts in order, from the top: “Hank Snow / with the Rainbow Ranch Boys / Faron Young / The Wilburn Brothers / Martha Carson / and her Country Gentlemen / Special added attractions / Slim Whitman and the Star Dusters / Onie Wheeler • Elvis Presley / with Bill & Scotty / Davis Sisters • Jimmie Rodgers Snow”. The show time and venue details are printed along the bottom of the poster, along with ticket sellers “Thiems Record Shop (Ambassador Theatre Bldg.) Radio Station WMSN”. Printed by Hatch Show Print, Nashville. Measures 13.75″ x 21.75″. In Very Good Plus condition with two heavy creases from the poster having been quarter-folded, as stored by the printer. Some corner wear, particularly to upper left. Some minor bleeding of printer’s ink in places, general toning.
This is the only known example of this poster.
Sold for $42,500.00
Jimi Hendrix Experience – Massive Group of Photo Negatives with Contact Sheets and Copyright (Germany, 1967). An enormous, absolutely stunning collection of 174 2.25″ x 2.25″ and 56 1.5″ x 1″ black and white photo negatives showing the Jimi Hendrix Experience – and some with rabid fans – in action on stage, candid shots backstage, hanging around in clubs, outdoor band photos, and more, during the band’s stay in Germany in March, 1967, mere months before Hendrix, Noel Redding, and Mitch Mitchell gained worldwide acclaim at the Monterey Pop Festival. Also includes 19 9.5″ x 12″ glossy black and white contact sheets showing positive images of the negatives. Simply jaw-dropping. In Fine condition. Provenance: The Ulf Krüger Archive, Hamburg.
Sold for $40,000.00
The Who – A Pete Townshend Stage-Used and Smashed 1964 Sonic Blue Fender Stratocaster Guitar from the Band’s December 1, 1967 Concert at Long Island Arena in Commack, NY (1967).
In two separate, smashed and splintered pieces. The serial number – DL24643 – on the neck plate identifies the guitar as a 1964 Fender Sonic Blue guitar. The entire story detailing the night of 12/1/1967, the smashing of the guitar, the catching of the guitar by the owner, and the history of the guitar are in a handwritten statement from the man who has owned this guitar for 50 years now. Accompanied by a handwritten 2 page letter from the original owner, ticket stub from the show, COA from Rock Star Yard Sale, and 2 aluminum engraved plaques suitable for framing. Similar Townshend smashers have sold for as much as $75K and a 1964 Fender alone would cost more than $14,000 to go buy today!
Sold for $30,000.00
Beatles Shea Stadium Unused Concert Ticket (1965). The Fab Four were riding the crest of Beatlemania when they performed the first stadium concert in modern Rock N’ Roll on August 15, 1965, playing at Shea Stadium to a world-record crowd of 56,000. The concert also broke box office records; ironically, the Beatles would play their last concert ever a little over one year later, opting to focus on studio work from that point on. This rare unused grey/brown ticket to that legendary show is for seat 5 in section 17, box 403A. In Excellent condition, with very minor wear to the corners.
Sold for $17,500.00
Go to Heritage Auctions for more information