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Little Richard's wardrobe and Jimi Hendrix's rare guitars head to Julien's Auctions Icons & Idols
Little Richard 1970 funky costume worn on the cover of the Rill Thing album. Estimate: $2000-$3000.

LOS ANGELES, CA.- Julien’s Auctions has announced the marquee headliners of Icons & Idols Trilogy: Rock ‘n’ Roll, the world-record breaking auction house to the stars’ annual music extravaganza on Tuesday, December 1st and Wednesday, December 2nd, 2020 live in Beverly Hills and online at Nearly 900 items join the previously announced all-star lineup of artifacts and memorabilia owned and used by some of the world’s greatest music artists of all-time including Eddie Van Halen, Kurt Cobain, Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson, Madonna, Lady Gaga, David Bowie, Aerosmith and more.

A spectacular collection from the Founding Father of Rock and Roll –the one and only, Little Richard–will dazzle the auction stage at this year’s two-day event. Born Richard Wayne Penniman on December 5th, 1932, in Macon, Georgia, the pioneering pianist and singer electrified the world with his stage persona and showmanship and was revered and emulated by a who’s who of rock and roll legends from Prince to Elton John. He left behind a legacy of rock and rock and roll landmark hits, “Tutti Frutti,” “Long Tall Sally,” “Rip It Up,” “Lucille” and “Good Golly Miss Molly” which were covered by the likes of The Everly Brothers, Creedence Clearwater Revival, The Kinks, Elvis Costello, The Scorpions and more. He was one of the original inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986 and in 1993, he received a Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award. He died at the age of 87 this year on May 9th, 2020. Some of Little Richard’s most flamboyant and show stopping ensembles will be offered including: a late 1960s ornate two-piece ensemble designed by Melvin James, comprised of a tan satin top in a pink, green, and gold floral brocade pattern with hot pink fringe and massive kimono-style sleeves with matching pants worn on his albums, Well Alright! and Freedom Blues, as well as black and white publicity photographs, three of which are included with this lot (estimate: $2,000 - $3,000);

Little Richard’s costume worn in a number of color photographs in his 1972 never released album Southern Child, comprised of a purple polyester vest adorned with rainbow-colored sequins and a pair of matching bell bottom pants with circular cut-outs and a Jacques Piaget lime green and purple silk scarf (estimate: $2,000 - $3,000); a funky metallic polyester in a silver and black checkered pattern top, mock turtleneck with makeup residue evident and exaggerated kimono with a pair of matching bell bottom pants worn on the cover of his 1970 album, The Rill Thing (estimate: $2,000 - $3,000); his colorful Italian light blue suede loafers and a group of two pairs of leather loafers, one rose colored and the other maroon (estimate range: $300 - $500) as well as a set of two wigs, both made of real human hair in a deep black shade in his classic pompadour style (estimate: $400 - $600). Olsie Robinson of Little Richard’s band The Upsetters’ 1958 Gibson electric bass guitar that the bassist played on “Lucille,” “Long Tall Sally,” “Slippin’ and Slidin,” and many other classic hits and in the 1956 film, Don’t Knock the Rock, and 1957 film, Mister Rock and Roll, is a stellar highlight of this collection (estimate: $20,000 - $40,000), as well as Little Richard’s musical scores to his iconic songs, “Tutti Frutti,” “Jenny, Jenny,” “Lucille,” and “Good Golly Miss Molly” will be on offer (estimate range: $400 - $600 each) and a group of 17 scores from the 1950s to the 1980s including the titles “Dancing in the Street,” “Down on the Bayou,” “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry,” and “Joy to the World,” plus, his passports, photographs, posters and other memorabilia.

Another highly anticipated item is a rare guitar owned and played by Bob Marley. This is the first guitar by the reggae icon ever to come to auction. Marley’s 1975 Ovation 1612-4 Custom Balladeer acoustic electric guitar with a natural spruce top and shallow back and ebony fingerboard with diamond inlays is estimated to sell between $80,000 - $100,000.

Headlining on the auction marquee are two exceptional guitars owned and played by one of the most influential guitarists of all time, Jimi Hendrix. One of Hendrix’s favored left-handed Fender Stratocasters that he kept and played in New York will electrify the auction stage. The guitar with Olympic White finish, serial number 273639 to the neck plate, indicates a build date of 1969 and has an alder body, maple neck and is estimated to sell at $300,000 - $500,000. The other, owned and played by Hendrix, is a circa late 1960s WM. C. Stahl Style 8 acoustic guitar by the Larson Brothers with a natural finish, spruce top, Brazilian rosewood sides and back, mahogany neck with ebony fingerboard, and abalone trim. The guitar, estimated to sell at $200,000 - $500,000, is accompanied by several documents including a copy of Life Magazine dated October 3rd, 1969, showing a photograph of Hendrix posing with what appears to be the same guitar and a handwritten letter from Jimi Hendrix Experience bass player Noel Redding stating that the Stahl was owned by Hendrix and appeared in the Life issue.

One of the Three Kings of Blues, Albert King’s 1967 Gibson Flying V Guitar will burn the auction stage and is the first guitar of King’s ever to come to auction. This was his main guitar for both studio work and live performances circa 1967-1972 and used on his finest recordings, “Born Under a Bad Sign,” “I’ll Play the Blues for You” and on the albums, Blues Masters: The Very Best of Albert King in 1999 and The Very Best of Albert King in 2007, where it appears on the covers. The guitar signed “Love / you / Albert King” was given to the blues legend by Gibson to replace his first Flying V, named “Lucy” that was lost. King was a huge musical influence on Eric Clapton, Mike Bloomfield, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Jimi Hendrix, who like King was left-handed but played right-handed guitars upside down. After seeing King play this cherry red Flying V, Hendrix had a conversation with King which inspired him to acquire his own ‘67 Flying V in the same color, which he famously painted with a psychedelic design. Items from the Estate of Albert King rarely come to auction and this spectacular blues artifact accompanied with a notarized letter from his Estate and original case is estimated to sell at $300,000 - $500,000.

An exciting auction appearance will be the sale of a Hammond B-3 organ circa mid-1960s played by one of the finest Hammond organists of all time, Gregg Allman. Allman played this instrument extensively during live performances with The Allman Brothers Band and with the Gregg Allman Band from the late 1980s until Allman’s final Lake Tahoe show on October 3, 2015 (estimate: $80,000 - $100,000). It is accompanied with a Hammond stool and a Leslie 122RV cabinet with rotating speakers.

Other prominent auction highlights include: handwritten lyrics by Freddie Mercury to an unpublished song with lines such as, “It’s a world of give and take/ a calculated risk reason/ Love inside a prison/ Destiny at stake/ Trapped by your own admission ... When you can’t handle the strain/ The tug of war of being in love/ The challenge and the pace human race” (estimate: $15,000 - $20,000); John Denver’s circa 1982 “White Lady” Greven six-string acoustic guitar (estimate: $20,000-$40,000); Jimmy Page’s 1979 burgundy Fender Stratocaster that he played while performing with rock band Public Eye in 1991 (estimate: $30,000 - $50,000); a single sheet original manuscript of John Lennon’s handwritten poem and lullaby titled “Bernice’s Sheep” that was published in A Spaniard in the Works on June 24th, 1965 (estimate: $30,000 - $50,000); Michael Jackson’s custom black jacket with rhinestone accents worn to the MTV Video Music Awards in Tokyo on May 27, 2006 where Jackson won the Legend Award that year (estimate: $40,000 - $60,000); Pete Townsend’s first guitar that he owned and played, a 1936 Radiotone cello guitar (estimate: $10,000 - $15,000); an original Beatles Ltd merchandising booklet signed inside by John Lennon, George Harrison, Ringo Starr, and Paul McCartney and obtained at Palais des Sports in Paris, France, on June 20th, 1965 (estimate: $15,000 - $20,000); Stevie Nicks’ red double row tambourine signed, “Much Love Stevie Nicks,” and her inscriptions of written album titles throughout the tambourine including, Time Space, Street Angel, Bella Donna, and more (estimate: $800-$1,200); a 14K white gold love symbol pendant on a 14K white gold chain, worn by Prince on multiple occasions (estimate: $8,000 - $10,000); a DX7 Synthesizer stage used and signed by Nine Inch Nails band members during the 1994-1995 Self Destruct Tour (estimate: $4,000 - $6,000); a life-size prosthetic bust of Dave Grohl from the 2006 film Tenacious D in the Pick of Destiny (estimate: $1,500 - $2,500); plus, instruments, memorabilia and ephemera from The Beatles, The Clash, Led Zeppelin, The Rolling Stones, Whitney Houston and more.

“Julien’s Auctions’ year-end Icons and Idols extravaganza will offer some of the most sought-after music artifacts in the world,” said Darren Julien, President/Chief Executive Officer of Julien’s Auctions. “From the first guitar ever to be offered at auction that was owned and played by Bob Marley to Albert King’s main and most important guitar to a stunning collection of Little Richard’s most iconic wardrobe, this event offers an exciting opportunity for buyers and collectors to own these incredible pieces of music history from the pioneers of rock and roll.”

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