Memorabilia from some of the greatest acts in rock ‘n’ roll history – the Beatles, Buddy Holly, the Grateful Dead, Jimi Hendrix and others – will be sold at an auction slated for Sunday, Mar. 1, by Philip Weiss Auctions. The Buddy Holly items are timely, as the 50th anniversary of the singer’s death in a tragic plane crash in 1959 (known as “the day the music died”) is February 9th.
A 1957 Buddy Holly & the Crickets record album, titled Chirpin’ Crickets and signed by all four members of the group (including Holly), is expected to bring $20,000-$30,000. The album (Brunswick Records, BL54038) includes the hits That’ll Be the Day, Oh Boy, Not Fade Away and Maybe Baby. An error on the jacket (“Bullock,” Texas should read Lubbock, Texas) only adds to the album’s desirability.
A pair of Buddy Holly business cards should each fetch $1,000-$2,000. The first, from around 1954, says “Buddy and Bob, Western and Bop, Buddy Holley (sic), Larry Welborn, Bob Montgomery.” The other, from around 1956, lists Holly as a member of “The Rhythm Playboys” (with Montgomery and Don Guess). Both cards had been given by Maria Elena Santiago – Holly’s wife – to the consignor.
Beatles fans will be salivating over the only known proof cover of the infamous “butcher” cover of the Yesterday and Today album, signed by all four members of the group (est. $30,000-$50,000). The ‘butcher’ album is a coveted rarity among Beatles collectors anyway, but a proof cover, signed by all the Beatles, must be considered a Holy Grail item of the genre. The final hammer price is anyone’s guess.
Another ‘butcher’ cover of the Yesterday and Today album – unsigned but unopened and still in the original shrink wrap – will also come up for bid. Other Beatles-related items include another album signed by all four members of the group; a copy of John Lennon’s book In His Own Write, signed by the slain Beatle; and limited-edition signed Beatles books. Additional items were being added at press time.
Another lot sure to attract intense bidder interest is an iconic 1968 poster for guitar legend Jimi Hendrix, in near mint condition (est. $10,000-$15,000). The Bill Graham Fillmore/Winterland Concert poster, for show dates Feb. 1-4, 1968, advertises appearances by Jimi Hendrix, John Mayall & the Blues Breakers and Albert King. Included are original unused tickets for all four nights and a concert postcard.
A poster promoting show dates for The Grateful Dead (est. $1,000-$2,000) will also be sold. The poster reads, “Doug Smith and Stan Fox Proudly Present Three Evenings With the Grateful Dead, Sept. 26-28, 1972, Stanley Theater, Jersey City, New Jersey.” Ticket outlets are listed in boxes and the words “Sold Out” have been handwritten in red marker. The 20” x 27” poster is in overall excellent condition.
An original oil on canvas painting by Stanley Mouse (born 1940), the American artist best known for his psychedelic art designs for 1960s rock concert posters, will cross the block (est. $2,000-$4,000). The framed painting, measuring 12′ x 16” (18” x 22” framed), is titled Piano Lady and signed “S. Mouse” lower right, with the artist’s trademark ‘mouse’ mark. The work is in overall mint condition.
Items not related to rock ‘n’ roll will also be sold. These include a single-owner collection of Black Americana, featuring thousands of postcards, trade cards, stereo views and sheet music; an important LOOK Magazine photo archive; Kennedy family photos by Richard Avedon; a handwritten letter from Albert Einstein to his wife; and Igor Stravinsky’s musical notations from The Rites of Spring.
The day before (Friday, Feb. 28, beginning at 10 a.m.), two huge single-owner lifetime train collections will be featured. Top lots will include a large quantity of post-war Lionel pieces (most in the original boxes); a Blue Comet set; Lionel “State Cars”; a nice assortment of train sets (some of them never opened); many accessories; and more. The March 1 rock ‘n’ roll auction will also start at 10 a.m.
Two weeks later (on Saturday, March 14, also with a 10 a.m. start time), Philip Weiss Auctions has planned a “Special Super Hero Weekend.” The firm is pleased to offer The Dane Nash Collection of Superman and other superhero collectibles. Also sold will be toys; puzzles; books; dolls; figurines; a large comic character watch collection; comic books; comic art; some fabulous animation art; and more.
The Dane Nash items – particularly those relating to Superman – are certain to command center stage. Highlights include a costume worn by Kirk Alyn from the 1940s Superman movie serials; two George Reeves Superman costumes (one for black and white filming, one for the color episodes) from the popular 1950s television series; and Reeves’ Clark Kent shirt, tie and cuff link set from the program.
Christopher Reeve will be represented, with a costume and other props from the Superman 1-3 feature films. And, from the first Superman movie: Marlon Brando’s black judge’s costume. Also to be sold will be Dean Cain’s Superman costume and Teri Hatcher’s Lois Lane costume from the hit TV series Lois & Clark; a costume from Helen Slater’s Supergirl movie; and other Superman-related items.
All the Superman costumes were originally purchased from Jim Hambrick, the noted Superman expert and historian. Also to be offered will be costumes and props from the Batman movies and television show, to include the original “Robin” costume worn by actor Burt Ward in the 1966 TV show Batman; evil clown costumes; and “The Penguin” rocket and head piece from the film Batman Returns.
Philip Weiss Auctions is always accepting quality consignments for future sales. To consign an item, estate or collection, you may call them directly, at (516) 594-0731, or you can e-mail them at [email protected]. To learn more about the company and its calendar of upcoming auctions, to include the Feb.-March sales, and to view color lot images, you may log on to www.prwauctions.com.