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Press Release - May 2, 2012
1949 Bigsby Solid Body, Only The Fourth Guitar Crafted By Famed Maker, Brings $266,500 To Lead Heritage Auctions’ $1.5+ Million Guitar Event
Highest price ever realized for a guitar at Heritage Auctions; Strength seen in vintage Fender market with 1958 Strat bringing more than $46,000, April 21, at The Dallas Guitar Show
DALLAS – The crowd of guitar collectors, aficionados and curiosity seekers was held breathless for 10 solid minutes on Saturday, April 21, as two bidders went head-to-head and bid-for-bid over a stunning 1949 Bigsby Birdseye Maple Solid Body Electric Guitar – just the fourth guitar made by the famous shop – with the eventual winner triumphing to wide applause with a price realized of $266,500 to lead Heritage Auctions’ Vintage Guitars and Musical Instruments Signature® Auction at The Dallas Guitar Show.
“The auction of this amazing Bigsby was one of the most exciting moments I’ve ever experienced at an auction,” said Mike Gutierrez, Consignment Director at Heritage Auctions. “The room was packed, the crowd was jazzed and the guitar brought double what Heritage had ever sold any guitar for.”
The auction overall realized north of $1.5+ million, with 409 lots total in the auction, translating into a 94.3% sell-through rate by total value. All prices include 25% Buyer’s Premium.
While the price did not approach that of the 1949 Bigsby, collectors were impressed with the $46,875 price realized by a beautiful 1955 Fender Stratocaster Sunburst Solid Body Electric Guitar, Serial # 6525, which brought more than 2-1/2 times its pre-auction estimate of $18,000+.
“If this auction and this guitar are any indication – and I think we can safely say they are – then vintage Fenders are definitely coming back,” said Gutierrez. “Fenders certainly ranked as the most interesting pieces of bidding in this auction. Owners of these early Strats would do very well to take a long look at their guitars right now and consider the current market.”
Gibson guitars also showed plenty of strength in the auction with a 1957 Gibson Les Paul Standard Gold Top Solid Body Electric Guitar, Serial #7 6188 – a first year Goldtop – bringing $45,313 and a 1959 Gibson ES-335 Sunburst Semi-Hollow Body Electric Guitar, Serial # A29998 realizing $31,250.
Collectors eagerly awaiting the auction of a 1967 D'Aquisto New Yorker Sunburst Archtop Acoustic Guitar, Serial # 1016A, which was among the most popular guitars in auction previews, were not disappointed when this beautiful guitar rose to finish the auction at $27,500 amidst spirited bidding.
Further highlights include, but are not limited to:
1960 Fender Stratocaster Sunburst Solid Body Electric Guitar, Serial # 44561: Realized $21,250.
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