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Press Release - June 26, 2016
Prince's Favored Yellow Cloud Guitar Rocks Into The Irsay Collection for $137,500Heritage Auctions offers singer/songwriter's personally designed and played electric guitar June 25 in Beverly Hills Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Auction.
BEVERLY HILLS — Prince's personally-owned and played Yellow Cloud Electric Guitar &mdash an instrument as unique and innovative as the artist's legendary contribution to the music world &mdash sold for $137,500 in Heritage Auctions' Entertainment & Music Memorabilia Auction June 25, 2016 in Beverly Hills.
The guitar was purchased by Mr. Jim Irsay, owner and CEO of the Indianapolis Colts and purveyor of one of the world's finest collections of historical instruments personally-owned by Jerry Garcia, John Lennon, Bob Dylan and Ringo Starr, among others.
"Mr. Irsay is delighted this historical instrument will reside with many others," said Chris McKinney, Curator of Rare Guitars & Collectables, The Irsay Collection. "The collection is about preserving pieces of music history and this guitar will join those used by some of the world's greatest musicians - of which Prince certainly deserves a place of honor."
The solid body guitar, made-to-order in the shape and style he made famous, was the superstar's instrument of choice for his hours-long concerts performed from the late 1980s to the mid-1990s. The pop star died April 21, 2016 at his Paisley Park home in Minnesota. "This Yellow Cloud guitar was Prince's main guitar and used in most of his early videos and touring performances & album recordings," according to Zeke Clark's letter of authenticity, which accompanied the guitar. "In 1994 he broke the neck of this guitar at a French T.V. show. After returning to [United States], I repaired neck and installed the first Floyd Rose set up Prince ever played … [a]nd then used in recording more albums, up until the symbol guitar was born."
"I hope the new owner appreciates it as much as I did," said Richard Lecce, the former owner of the guitar. "It would be wonderful if it could be shared with the world in some way so that other people can enjoy it as both a work of art and a piece of music history."
More Prince memorabilia generated strong bidder interest, include a rare, Reel-to-Reel Demo Tape with Tracklist Written in His Own Hand, which sold for $4,250. The early Prince demo tape, made between 1976 or 1977, was recorded before he was signed to contract. The tape - in a box with the tracklist and Prince's name written in black felt-pen by his own hand - contains three songs. The first two, "Just as Long as We're Together" and "My Love Is Forever," would go on to be re-recorded for his debut album, For You, while the third is an instrumental track titled "Jelly Jam" which was later reworked into part of "Just as Long..."
Additional memorabilia appearing in the auction recognizing Prince and his extraordinary music career include a 1984 "Purple Rain" RIAA Platinum Record Sales Award bestowed to Prince and the Revolution commemorating the sale of more than 1 million copies was pushed to $7,500 an RIAA Gold Record Sales Award for "1999", brought $5,000; an RIAA Hologram Gold Video Sales Award for "Purple Rain", the artist's first home video release, ended at $1,750.
Hi-Res images available:
Eric Bradley, Public Relations Associate
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