We’ve seen some pretty wild musical auctions in the past, ranging from Kurt Cobain’s Blockbuster video card to the co-writing credit for Prince’s first single, but rarely have we seen such an integral piece of musical history as the first “real” guitar owned by blues-rock legend Stevie Ray Vaughan.
As Beaumont Enterprise reports, ‘Jimbo’, the first professional-grade guitar used by Stevie Ray Vaughan, is about to go under the hammer over at Heritage Auctions, where the starting bid is currently listed as $200,000 USD.
The 1951 Fender No-caster (often called a Fender Broadcaster) is famed for being the best-known guitar with which Stevie Ray Vaughan learned his craft and began to make his first studio recordings. Acquired from his brother Jimmie Vaughan in 1966 when Stevie Ray was twelve, the guitar became known as ‘Jimbo’, thanks in part to that name having been scratched into the finish on the instrument’s rear finish.
As the story goes, Vaughan used the guitar (and even reportedly slept with it at times) from the mid-’60s until 1971, when he traded it to music teacher Geoff Appold for a red Epiphone, because many of his idols played that same guitar.
“[Jimmie] gave me a ’51 Tele, a cross between a Broadcaster and a Tele that I rebuilt and ended up letting someone talk me into selling and I’m still kicking myself,” said Vaughan in a 1989 interview. “Still looking for it, by the way! So if somebody finds a guitar that says ‘Jimbo’ on the back and it’s the right one, it’s the real deal – you can come rape me for it, or my pocketbook anyway!”
Sadly Stevie Ray Vaughan tragically passed away in a plane crash in 1990, having never reclaimed his guitar, but now a dedicated music fan has the chance to own this rare piece of musical history.
If you’re the lucky winner of this fabled instrument, you’ll also score two CD copies of unreleased live recordings by the late rocker, including one live set from his early band Liberation.
Needless to say, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for rock fans, so if money isn’t an issue and you’re real keen on musical history, head on over to Heritage Auctions for more info.