Start me up
This “incredibly rare, likely unique” survivor from one of the first Rolling Stones concerts, shown top, performed just days after their appearance on the first-ever Top of The Pops, made a suitably stand-out result of £15,000 when offered at East Bristol Auctions (17.5% buyer’s premium).
The 2ft 5in x 3ft 3in (74cm x 1m) poster, which had been estimated at £4000-6000 on November 29, was found by the vendors in the loft of their old house in Knowle, Bristol, which they moved to in 1984. It had stayed with them ever since.
The poster promoted a concert at Colston Hall in Bristol on Monday, January 27, 1964 – the last date of the band’s first UK tour – also featuring The Ronettes and Marty Wilde.
The Stones were first formed in 1962. Their debut album did not appear until after this Colston Hall gig, in spring 1964. It was followed by the first UK number one: It’s All Over Now.
This poster was printed by Willsons of Leicester and came to auction complete save for some loss to the rear of the upper section probably from when it was taken down from its original poster board outside the Colston Hall.
Andy Stowe of East Bristol said: “This was quite honestly one of those real ‘auction’ moments, and my personal favourite item I’ve ever had the pleasure of selling – genuinely found in a loft, genuinely about to be thrown away and the vendor cried her eyes out in the room when it hammered at £15,000. Her son was getting married the next day, and she gave all the money to him. It was just the loveliest auction story I’ve ever encountered.”
Stowe said the previous record he could find for a Rolling Stones poster was £13,000 for a 1965 Bristol Colston Hall poster.
He added: “The buyer of this latest example [from the same venue] also owns that previous poster – so now he has the two most valuable Stones posters known to exist. There were three phone lines competing, all private collectors.”
All day, all night, all right
When The Kinks appeared at the All Night Ball in Bridlington on January 5, 1965, they had only been going for a year, formed by brothers Ray and Dave Davies in north London.
The poster shown here, offered at Special Auction Services (17.5% buyer’s premium) on November 19, references the band’s early hit – their fourth single – All Day and All Of The Night, which reached number two in the UK.
Measuring 20in x 2ft 6in (51 x 76cm), this design featured in the SAS Music & Entertainment Auction sold for £460 to a US buyer against an estimate of £150-200.
Hammer to fall
A large collection of Queen memorabilia was consigned to Ewbank’s (28.8% buyer’s premium inc VAT) on January 9 courtesy of a lifelong fan of the band.
Trudi Humphry met the band on numerous occasions, starred in multiple music videos and was heavily involved with The Official Fan Club in London. This led to her having access to the band and attending many concerts and tours with backstage passes. Humphry also wrote a discographical research biography with Andy Skingle which was printed in the booklet and credited to them in the box set of albums called Queen The Works.
This poster, estimated at £400-600 in the Memorabilia & Movie Props sale, promoted the Queen – Crazy Tour of London 1979. The 2ft 3in x 3ft 1in design was removed from outside Purley Tiffany’s on December 17 that year by the vendor who was in attendance. It sold to a European online buyer for £950 at Ewbank’s.
Put a sell on you
By 1965 The Animals had been around for a few years, with 1964 a breakthrough year when they moved from Newcastle to London and achieved a transatlantic number one hit with House of the Rising Sun (their second single).
In May 1965 they played at the Basildon Locarno Ballroom, a concert promoted by this design offered in the Excalibur (30/27/24% buyer’s premium inc VAT) auction on January 24-25 titled Toys & Model railways; Movie & Music memorabilia & Posters, Comic Books & Comic Art.
Estimated at £50-70, it sold for £190 on thesaleroom.com to what Excalibur described as “one of our regular American buyers”. Sarah Torode from Excalibur said: “As far as we know both posters [also see the Zombie Flesh Eaters film poster on p20] had been stored in tubes in lofts having been purchased from auctions years before.”
Wouldn’t it be nice to own this
The Beach Boys are a highly popular band for entertainment memorabilia buyers and a rare poster for two concert performances in the UK made waves at the Greenslade Taylor Hunt (19.5% buyer’s premium) Collectors auction on December 6.
The (76cm x 1m) design promoted the Monday, December 2, 1968, appearance at Colston Hall in Bristol and was accompanied by a Beach Boys Concert Tour of Great Britain, December 1968 souvenir programme.
Peter Rixon, a GTH associate, said: “This had been consigned by the family of someone who attended the concert, so the provenance was good, and I think potential bidders warmed to the fact that it was fresh to the market. Sadly, it was not in the best condition, having acquired a number of quite long tears which had been sellotaped together. It was also slightly crumpled.”
Although it was well viewed in the room the poster eventually sold to an online bidder for a mid-estimate £350. The underbidder was also online.
A 1962 day in the life
This poster above for an appearance for Merseyside’s Joy The Fabulous Beatles at Heswall Jazz Club, held in Barnston’s Women’s Institute on Saturday, June 30, 1962, was among a collection of Fab Four memorabilia consigned to Bellmans (22% buyer’s premium) on December 4-5.
Consigned by an anonymous vendor to the wide-ranging sale titled Wines & Spirits, Toys, Entertainment & Popular Culture, Contemporary Picture & Prints in Wisborough Green, West Sussex, it was bought by a UK trade/collector buyer bidding on the phone for £3600 against an estimate of £200-300. The 2ft 6in x 19½in (75.5 x 50cm) poster was printed by Arthur Press, Stroud.
While The Beatles are hugely popular with collectors as a whole, relics of their early career can bring extra value even for seemingly mundane items. This Heswall concert took place only 18 days after their first recording session at EMI with George Martin as producer and four months before their first single their first single as The Beatles, Love Me Do, entered the British chart (reaching number 17).
Also doing well at Bellmans was a group of 13 concert, and a few record company promotional posters, from the late 1960s-’96, many printed by Electric (Modern) Printing, Manchester, and mostly for performances held at the Fairfield Halls, Croydon, London.
The example above was right at the end of that timeline: for the Sex Pistols’ Filthy Lucre Tour, Finsbury Park, London, on June 23, 1996, measuring 19 x 13in (48 x 33cm).
The group was consigned by a private vendor of similar posters, memorabilia etc, and sold for £1700 to a UK trade buyer on the phone, underbid by an online bidder (estimate £250-500).
Two of the names synonymous with the Manchester music scene – Joy Division and The Factory – are brought together on this poster which sold at Merseyside auction house Omega (28/24/21% buyer’s premium) on December 3.
The 20in x 2ft 6in (51 x 76cm) design promotes the band’s performance at the venue in Royce Road, Hulme, on Friday, September 28, 1979. A classic image exists of singer Ian Curtis in front of the same poster.
This poster was purchased from a girlfriend of a former bouncer at the venue during the period. Estimated at £600-1000 in the Omega Music Memorabilia auction, it sold for £3600 to an online bidder from overseas.
The band first formed in Salford in 1976 and changed their name from Warsaw to Joy Division two years later. By 1979, debut LP Unknown Pleasures had appeared (one of just two albums).
After Curtis’ suicide in 1980 the rest of the band eventually formed the basis of New Order.
Maybe you can drive my car
Sotheby’s (25/20/13.9% buyer’s premium) online Beatles auction which ended on December 13 offered just 25 lots but boasted an eye-catching price when John Lennon’s sunglasses estimated at £6000- 8000 sold instead for £110,000.
In 1966 Lennon was given a pair of round glasses to prepare for his role in Richard Lester’s film How I Won the War. Quickly they became synonymous with his image and later his name.
The vendor here, Alan Herring – a chauffeur for the Fab Four – stated: “In the summer of 1968 I had picked John up with Ringo and George in Ringo’s Mercedes and driven the boys into the office. When John got out of the car I noticed that he’d left these sunglasses on the back seat and one lens and one arm had become disconnected.
"I asked John if he’d like me to get them fixed for him. He told me not to worry, they were just for the look! He said he’d send out for some that fit. I never did get them mended, I just kept them as they were as John had left them.”
In the same sale came a poster also from Herring. Kaleidoscope Eyes by Larry Smart, an original silkscreen poster c.1967, 4 x 3ft (1.2m x 90.5cm), shows Lennon wearing a pair of sunglasses.
According to Herring: “John gave me this psychedelic portrait poster of himself on the day of the big giveaway at the Apple Boutique the day the store was closed. I’d driven John, George and Ringo to the store at the end of that July day in 1968 to have a look at the place.
"I saw this poster, which had slipped off the wall, and was lying on the floor beneath where it had been hanging. I picked it up and showed it to John. He told me I could have it.”