Auction Results: Dixon’s Crumpton Auction’s Fine & Rare Guitars & Accessories Sale
Dixon’s Crumpton Auction of Crumpton, MD’s February 9, 2023 Fine & Rare Guitars & Accessories sale struck a chord with collectors worldwide. This 205-lot event featured 20th- and early-21st-century guitars and related accessories, most from a single estate with a small number of select consignments from other clients. Here are some of the high notes from this exciting sale.
This auction featured over two dozen examples of vintage to modern electric Gibson guitars. Lot #9060, a Gibson Les Paul custom Black Beauty guitar from the late 1950s or early 60s, took the sale’s top slot. Estimated at USD 10,000 to $15,000, it realized $30,750.
Gibson stringed instruments have been musician’s favorites since their introduction in 1894. The company, started by Orville Gibson (American, 1856 – 1918) as a side hustle, is one of the oldest guitar manufacturers still in existence today. Electric guitar legend Les Paul (American, 1915 – 2009) was responsible for the Black Beauty’s glossy black finish and name. When asked why the guitar should be black, he shared, “Because you can see your hands move when you’re on the stage and it looks good with any outfit you wear.”
This sale also included a strong selection of Fender electric guitars, with nearly 30 on offer. Lot#9069, a Fender 1965 Stratocaster guitar in Sunburst with a hard case, had an estimate of $3,000 to $5,000. It realized $23,370.
In this case, “sunburst” refers to the finish on the guitar. The wood on the instrument features a central area of light coloration that darkens progressively towards the edges before hitting a dark rim. The founder of Fender, Leo Fender (American, 1909 – 1991), was not a guitar player himself but loved to design instruments for people who did. Perhaps his most famous accomplishment was inventing the Fender Stratocaster electric guitar in the early 1950s.
A handful of Veleno electric guitars also made an appearance in this auction. Lot #9061, a Veleno 1971 chrome production model guitar #67, was estimated at $12,000 to $18,000 and sold for $20,910. This example generated 13 bids.
Veleno electric guitars, unlike other brands, are made entirely from metal. They were named after their inventor, John Veleno (American, 1934 – 2018), who built aluminum electrical housings for NASA as his day job. He created all elements of the instruments on his own, had no employees, and assembled each guitar by hand in his spare time. Loved by professional performers for their sound, looks, durability, and weather resistance, these custom instruments have been displayed at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Double-neck guitars are extremely eye-catching– both on and off the stage. Lot #9082, a Gibson 1991 Eds-1275 6-12 double-neck guitar in cherry, was estimated at $2,000 to $4,000. It generated six bids and sold for $5,842.50. The guitar, in very good overall condition, included a hard case, and the plastic was still intact on its pickguard.
The first double-necked, stringed instruments appeared as early as 1690 and were in the form of a small-scaled guitar with an even smaller guitar attached to its treble side. The second set of strings allowed the performer to shift a melody to another key while retaining the same tone structure. Today, double-necked guitars are considered somewhat of a novelty; heavy metal bands of the 1980s and 1990s often used them in performance for shock and theatrical value. The most famous musician using a double-necked guitar with any regularity today is Jimmy Page, guitarist and founder of the rock band Led Zeppelin.
And last but not least, traditional acoustic guitars rounded out this fine musical event. Lot #9085, a Kalamazoo 1930s-era maple acoustic guitar with a case, was estimated at $400 to $600. It sold for $2,583.
The Kalamazoo brand belonged to Gibson. Its factory was located in Kalamazoo, Michigan. It produced “budget” instruments through 1984. Pre-war, Kalamazoo made archtop, flat top, and lap steel guitars, banjos, and mandolins. Post-war, production focused on solid-body electric and bass guitars. The company’s headquarters was added to the United States’ National Register of Historic Places in 2022.
For more information on Dixon’s Crumpton Auction’s February 9, 2023 Fine & Rare Guitars & Accessories sale, visit LiveAuctioneers.
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