Auction breaks previous record for rare item
Michael Baggs

11:28 1st April 2013

A copy of The Beatles' 1967 record Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band has sold at auction for $290,500.

The rare record, signed by all four members, was said to be in 'extraordinary condition' and was the subject of a fierce bidding war at the US auction. The recent sale beats previous Beatles sales, when another rare record was sold for $190,000 in 2010.

Beatles memorabilia expert Perry Cox spoke of his excitement at the record, stating the item was one of the finest he had ever seen.

"With my being thoroughly immersed in Beatles collectibles for over 30 years, it takes something extraordinarily special to excite me," he stated, quotes "I consider this to be one of the top two items of Beatles memorabilia I've ever seen - the other being a signed copy of Meet The Beatles."

It is believed the unnamed buyer came from the midwest in America.

The rare item was signed by all four members of The Beatles

The signed album isn't the only Beatles memorabilia currently up for auction, as an angry letter written to Paul McCartney and Linda from John Lennon in 1971 has also been put up for sale online.

The typed letter is thought to be a draft, as it is unsigned and has corrections written on it by hand. It is two pages long and features John Lennon's letterhead, which is a circle containing a photo of himself and Yoko Ono, about to kiss.

In the letter, Lennon writes, "Do you really think most of today's art came about because of the Beatles? I don't believe you're that insane - Paul - do you believe that? When you stop believing it you might wake up!"

The letter is expected to fetch between £26,000 to £39,000 and will be auctioned online on 30 May.

Below: the most expensive music memorabilia sold at auction ever

  • Eric Clapton's favourite guitar from 1973 until 1985, a stratocaster he called 'blackie', sold for $959,500 in a 2004 auction at Christies.

  • John Lennon's upright Stenway piano, on which he wrote 'Imagine', was bought by George Michael at auction for a massive £1,450,000 in 2000. Michael then donated the piano to The Beatles Museum in Liverpool.

  • Jimi Hendrix first set fire to his stratocaster guitar at a London show in 1967, and more than 40 years later in 2008, this very same instrument sold for £280,000 in London.

  • Paul McCartney's original handwritten lyrics to the 1967 Beatles song 'Getting Better' sold at a London auction for £161,000 in 1995.

  • One of three life-size, gold plated sculptures of Michael Jackson and his pet monkey Bubbles, by Jeff Koons, went for a huge $5.6 million in New York, 2001.

  • The lyric sheets to Elton John & Bernie Taupin's 'Candle In The Wind' fetched £278,512 in 1998.

  • A white stratocaster became the most expensive guitar ever sold when it went for $2.7 million to raise money for Asian Tsunami victims in 2005. The project was coordinated by Bryan Adams, which saw the guitar played and signed by artists including Mick Jagger, Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Brian May, Jimmy Page Mark Knopfler, Ray Davis, Liam Gallagher, Paul McCartney and Sting.

  • John Lennon''s handwritten lyrics to the classic Beatles song ''A Day In The Life'' sold for a whopping $1,202,500 at Sotheby''s in New York in 2010.

  • Ludwig van Beethoven's manuscript for his 9th Symphony went for £2.1 million in London in 2003. The composer was originally paid just £100 for the whole composition.

  • John Lennon's custom made Rolls Royce - painted with colourful, psychedelic patterns - fetched $2,230,000 at auction in 1985. However, some predict it could sell for more than $20 million if it went on sale again today.