An early piece of Jimi Hendrix history sold for $216,000 during an online auction over the weekend. The early 1960s Japanese sunburst electric guitar jumped nearly four times its pre-auction estimated value.
GWS Auctions says the Rock God’s electric ax holds significant meaning, as he played the instrument shortly after being discharged from the U.S.
Army in 1962. “After leaving Fort Campbell Jimi moved to Clarksville, Tennessee for a short time where he played on the Chitlin’ Circuit with the likes of Wilson Pickett, Slim Harpo, Sam Cooke, Ike and Tina Turner and Jackie Wilson before moving to Harlem, New York in early 1964 where he stayed until late 1966 playing venues such as Cafe Wha and the Cheetah Club,” the site says.
According to music site NME, Jimi left the Japanese sunburst with his friend Mike Quashie when he moved to London in 1966. Quashie then provided a signed and notarized letter of provenance before he died in 2019.
Auctioneers initially estimated the guitar’s value at $50,000. As the price continued to climb, you can imagine the buyer’s desired was piqued by thoughts of Jimi’s smooth handle on this killer time capsule.