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Lennon guitar goes under the hammer

The guitar John Lennon used to record the Beatles’ Paperback Writer is going to auction.

And the Gretsch 6120 he played in 1966 is expected to fetch up to £600,000.

Lennon gave the guitar to his cousin David Birch in 1967 – a year after the single was recorded at Abbey Road Studios, London during the Beatles Revolver sessions. It was their 11th single and it hit the top spot in the UK and US charts.

Birch says: “I was just cheeky enough to ask John for one of his spare guitars. I had my eye on a blue Fender Stratocaster that was lying in the studio, but John suggested the Gretsch and gave it to me as we were talking.”

The guitar has an estimated sales price of between £400,000 and £600,000 and online bidding begins on November 14 via The live auction takes place at Le Meridien Hotel, Piccadilly, London on November 23, where over 100 lots of Beatles memorabilia will be available.

Included in the auction is a copy of the Sgt. Pepper album, signed by all four Beatles, items from the collection of Lennon’s friend Pete Shotton and the banjo used by Rod Davis in Lennon’s The Quarrymen.

In May this year, George Harrison’s Rickenbacker 425 – used on Beatles hit I Want To Hold Your Handsold at auction for $657,000 in New York.

Scott looks after and updates Louder’s online buyer’s guides and also scouts out the best deals for music fans from every corner of the internet. He's spent more than 28 years in newspapers and magazines as an editor, production editor, sub-editor, designer, writer and reviewer. Scott joined our news desk in the summer of 2014, where he wrote extensively about rock, metal, prog and more, before moving to the eCommerce team full-time in 2020. Scott has previous written for publications including IGN, Sunday Mirror, Daily Record and The Herald covering everything from daily news and weekly features, to video games, travel and whisky.