Skip to main content

Beyond Vinyl: Memorabilia market round-up

A look at upcoming sales of music memorabilia as well as recent prices realized.

The Music Memorabilia Show scheduled for Feb. 6 in New York City is highlighting memorabilia related to African-American performers in honor of Black History Month.

In addition to records of all kinds, the show will feature jazz concert posters for Miles Davis, Charlie Parker, John Coltrane, Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Cab Calloway and others, as well as sheet music from the early 1900s, photos of Diana Ross and The Supremes and much more.

The show will be held on the fourth floor of the Tip Top Shoe Building at 155 West 72nd Street.

• • •

Rock photographer Philip Kamin is selling a large portion of his photo collection, including copyrights, in Legendary Auctions’ February Premium sale running from Feb. 15 through Feb. 25. Kamin’s collection includes more than 30,000 images taken by Kamin himself or acquired during his career.

Photos included in this auction include shots of The Beatles’ historic concert at Shea Stadium (some of which were published in Goldmine #764, Nov. 6, 2009), early Jimi Hendrix, The Who with Keith Moon, Led Zeppelin with Jimmy Page, The Rolling Stones with Brian Jones, Pink Floyd, Deep Purple and many others. Many of the images up for auction have never been published. More information is available at

Coldplay’s Web site reports that the band’s End of Decade Clearout Sale of Coldplay memorabilia and instruments on eBay raised £251,482 (approximately $407,000) for the Kids Company charity. Jon Buckland’s Thinline ’72 Telecaster guitar, his main guitar through the X&Y and Viva tours, brought the highest amount, selling for £15,000 (approximately $24,300).

• • •

Recent offerings of vintage guitars on eBay included a 1957 Gibson Les Paul Goldtop, which sold for $149,000. The guitar was in near-mint condition.

A 1953 Fender Telecaster Black Guard sold for $32,500. The guitar had been refretted but otherwise was completely original.

Electric guitars weren’t the only instruments fetching high prices recently. A vintage 1936 Gibson Nick Lucas Special acoustic guitar went for $27,762.62.

Finally, a 1960 Fender Stratocaster owned by Rocky Athas, current lead guitarist for John Mayall And The Bluesbreakers, sold for $19,5000.

• • •

In other recent memorabilia auctions on eBay, a Gibson Billy Gibbons “Pearly Gates” Les Paul went for $28,000. This is a reproduction of Gibbons’ favorite guitar (including scratches and dings), a 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard. The first 50 of these instruments were signed and played by Billy Gibbons; this one is #47 and came with a certificate of authenticity and a signed and framed photo of Gibbons with his original Les Paul.

A framed set of the original molds for Elvis’ sunglasses, circa 1970, sold for $22,500. These were designed by optician Dennis Roberts, owner of Optique Boutique in California and Elvis’ personal optician. The piece includes six molds: one pair with the EP design and the other two pairs for the left and right side of the letters TCB with a lightning bolt. Three photographs in the frame show Elvis wearing the shades along with a letter and certificate of authenticity. A brass plaque at the bottom reads, “The Birthplace of Elvis Presley’s Eye Glasses & Sunglasses The Original EP and TCB Molds I Designed for Elvis c. Oct 1970.”

Another piece from Roberts’ collection is a Palm Springs police badge owned by Elvis, which sold for $9,995. The badge was given to Elvis by the Palm Springs Police Officers Association and differs from the normal badge given to actual police officers. The badge is in a frame along with an identifying plaque, letters authenticating the badge, and a membership card from the Palm Springs Police Officers Association identifying Elvis A. Presley as a regular member.

A 14-inch promo display for Beatles car mascot dolls sold for $8,000. The display shows the heads of the original 14-inch nodding-head dolls made in 1964, which were on dispay to promote smaller versions on sale. According to the seller, the retail store owner had displayed the full dolls in his store but had discarded the bodies because of damage to the bases and instruments.


*Great Books, CDs, Price Guides & More
*Share YOUR Thoughts in the Goldmine Forums
*Check out our FREE Online Classified Ads

Click here to check out the latest price guides from Goldmine