John Lennon's Paper Back Writer Guitar Gretsch 6120 to be Auctioned
John Lennon with His Gretsch 6120
According to the British publication, The Telegraph, a guitar once owned by John Lennon and used to write The Beatles' 1966 hit 'Paperback Writer' is expected to fetch around £600,000 at auction later this month.
The Gretsch 6120 was given to Lennon's cousin David Birch as a gift in 1967 and will now be auctioned off at Le Meridien Hotel, Piccadilly, London on November 23.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Birch explained how the instrument came into his possession. Visiting Lennon at his home in Weybridge, Surrey, Birch told his famous relative that he was looking to start a band of his own. "I was just cheeky enough to ask John for one of his spare guitars," he stated. "I had my eye on a blue Fender Stratocaster that was lying in the studio but John suggested the Gretsch and gave it to me as we were talking.''
Lennon's cousin David Birch
Birch's mother Harriet was the younger sister of Lennon's mother Julia. The two lived near each other when Lennon lived with his Aunt Mimi in Woolton. Lennon most notably used the Gretsch 6120 on 'Paperback Writer', which was recorded in April 1966 at Abbey Road Studios for the album 'Revolver'.
Currently, the guitar only has two documented owners – Lennon and Birch.
Bidding for the item begins on November 14.
Take note of a few blemishes on this instrument. The pickguard is missing. Below the neck pickup is a black plastic grommet that covers the hole where the mute would usually be placed. Above the neck pickup volume knob on the lower bout there is a hole. This originally housed the lever that operated the mute to raise or lower it. Due to the provenance of this instrument, I doubt if these will be a factor in its sale.