Celebrity Memorabilia Auction in Beverly Hills Achieves Record Prices

Once again I spent a weekend with one of our clients, Julien’s Auctions, supporting our auction software during the Icons & Idols sale in Beverly Hills, California.

You can look up the results for Icons and Idols (Fri,Sa) and the Johnny Cash sale (Sun) online.

Here are some press statements about this weekend’s sale:

From Rolling Stone:

A single glove worn by Michael Jackson on his Bad tour sold for $330,000 on Saturday.

The glove drew the highest price at the “Icons and Idols” auction, held at Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills. Other Jackson items that were sold include a signed jacket and a fedora he wore onstage, which went for $96,000 and $72,000 respectively. A costume made for Jackson’s pet chimp Bubbles was also reportedly up for auction, but it is unknown whether it sold.

… actually, it is known. It sold for $11,250.

Th AP writes Johnny Cash jumpsuit brings $50,000 at auction:

“The Man in Black” was dressed in blue as he rehearsed for a 1969 concert at San Quentin.

The embroidered blue jumpsuit that Johnny Cash wore to practice caused a bidding war during a memorabilia auction Sunday, bringing in nearly 10 times what was expected.

The suit was expected to sell for $5,000, but was eventually claimed for $50,000 by a collector from Belgium, said Darren Julien, president and CEO of Julien’s Auctions in Beverly Hills. He would not name the buyer.

The auction of 321 lots sold for over $700,000, nearly twice what was expected, Julien said Monday.

The late country singer was photographed in the suit giving a concert photographer “The Finger.”

That photo was used in a 1998 Billboard magazine ad purchased by Cash’s record company to sarcastically thank Nashville and country radio after he received a best country album Grammy for “Unchained.”

“Johnny Cash is highly collectible. He’s got global appeal, especially for a country artist. He was the first country music artist who was collectible. He set the standard,” Julien said.

An international group of fans, collectors and investors took part in the auction, by phone or in person, he said.

A poster announcing Cash’s performance at the prison sold for $25,000, a 1968 passport for $21,875 and a Martin guitar for $50,000.

A shirt made by Nudie Cohn and worn by Cash when he was grand marshal of the American Bicentennial Grand Parade in 1976 brought in $31,250 and a pair of Cash’s knee-high boots sold for $21,875.

Cash died in 2003 of complications from diabetes.

Because he performed at prison so often and led a rather rowdy life early in his career, many people believed he served time in prison. He did not, although he battled drug addiction over the years and received a suspended jail sentence in 1965 on a misdemeanor narcotics charge in Texas.

Here are some details on the lot, in case you are interested.

Well, why am I writing all this? To show you that one thing’s for sure: The one group of people who are well and alive and thriving in this financial crisis are the super-duper rich. And they are surely doing their part in driving up prices in investments left and right, be it commodities or be it celebrity memorabilia.

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1 thought on “Celebrity Memorabilia Auction in Beverly Hills Achieves Record Prices”

  1. Wow – just like my boss says – there is some serious money out there! Still, I can’t believe what some people will pay to have a piece of their favorite celebrity. Hopefully the money went to a good cause!

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