Results are in from the Omega Auctions Beatles Auction yesterday. Ex-Wings drummer Geoff Britton’s original Ludwig drum kit fetched only £2000 (U.S. $2,695), which is probably what it’s worth as a drum kit! Here are some of the highlights of the auction.
A superb copy of The Beatles’ “Love Me Do” single from 1962 fetched £460 (U.S. $620), whereas the same single in a little more worn state went for £180 when it was sold as a lot together with first editions of four other Beatles singles!
Two British export copies of the U.S. albums “Beatles VI” and “Something New” went for £380 (U.S. $513) and £500 (U.S. $674), respectively.
Despite this copy having been signed by the likes of Alan Parsons, Mark Lewisohn and Klaus Voormann, the 1988 limited edition HMV boxed set of all the Beatles CDs didn’t fetch more than £100. We remember coming across it at the HMV in Oxford Street at the time, but at £215 we passed. Lucky, really. An unsigned copy went for £95. Similarly, the “blue boxed set” – cassette edition sold for £90, and the box of 3-inch CD singles sold for £150.
Speaking of old formats, a lot of several reel to reel mono tapes including the elusive “A Collection of Beatles Oldies”, not to mention the super rare “White album” was sold for only £460.
Back in India in the sixties, most families still had their gramophone players stuck at 78 rpm, so the Beatles singles were also pressed as 78’s. One such single, “She Loves You” was for sale at the auction and fetched £1,050 (U.S. $1,415).
As we are approaching the release of a 2021 “Let It Be” boxed set, it’s interesting to note that a couple of original 1970 boxed sets were sold for £260 and £280.
Two copies of the U.K. pressings of the Christmas album freely distributed to fan club members only, titled “From Then To You” were sold for £200 (U.S. $270) and £220 (U.S. $ 296), whereas a couple of Christmas singles (1965 and 1968) sold for £80 (U.S. $107) as one lot.
A superb copy of “Yesterday and Today” second state butcher cover album was sold for £1,500 (U.S. $2,021).
A one of a kind item like the early mix of “Happiness is a warm gun” on an EMI acetate sold for £6,000 (U.S. $8,086). The song featured a tuba, probably played by Paul, which was more present in this mix than the commercial release and it also contains John Lennon singing “I Need A Fix ‘Cause I’m Going Down” twice in a row in the first bridge section rather than just once on the album.
A lyric sheet of the song “A Hard Day’s Night” and signed by all four members of The Beatles, stemming from a Blackpool televised concert sold for £13,800 (U.S. $18,582). This was the first ever performance of “A Hard Day’s Night” to be aired on TV, and the page was sold within a 32 page ‘Camera Script’ which was also signed by a few of the other performers in the show. The sale also included a pair of timpani drumsticks which according to the vendor were used by Ringo Starr during the performance and collected by the vendor on the night after they were left on the floor.
We understand that the house which was advertised in the auction, George Harrison’s childhood home in Upton Green, Speke, Liverpool is to go on the market later this year. For more auction results from The Beatles Auction, start here.
Another auction which took place the other day was in Copenhagen, Denmark, where some memorabilia from the Lennons’ visit to Denmark in late 1969 – early 1970 went under the hammer. The lot included a cassette of an interview with John Lennon, where he also performed his song “Radio Peace”, a number of photos and a school paper featuring a report of the interview. The then 16 year old boy who recorded the interview and took the photos took home DKK 370,000, which translates roughly to £31,470 or U.S. $42,410.