Feedback from The Eric Clapton Sale of Guitars and Amps

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We were thrilled with the results of the Eric Clapton auction on 9th March at Bonhams in New York, which made over three times our pre-sale estimate, totalling $1,767,977 hammer/$2.15 million with premium.  A fantastic result for Eric Clapton and The Crossroads Centre, a cause very close to Clapton’s heart; and strong evidence of the high esteem Clapton commands from fans all over the world.

The pre-sale views in London, Los Angeles and New York were constantly busy with fans, guitar aficionados and musicians from all corners of the globe.  It was wonderful to see the enthusiasm and interest shown by so many people, serious buyers trying the guitars and others happy to have their photos taken with their favourite instruments.  The day of the sale saw many interested bidders arriving early to secure a seat in the auction room at Bonhams on Madison Avenue in New York and at the Simulcast Auction at Bonhams’ Sunset Boulevard office in Los Angeles. Excitement mounted as the two rooms filled to capacity.  The auction started with a bang as the hammer went down on Lot 1, a Fender Pro Junior amp, which sold for $7,000, more than twenty times the pre-sale estimate, setting the trend for the rest of the sale. We knew that this auction was going to exceed all our wildest expectations when Lot 8 – a delightful ¾ size guitar made by Danny Ferrington in 1979, and played by Clapton a lot whilst travelling in early 1980s – sold for a staggering $35,000 – a hundred times its estimate!  Banks of telephone bidders handled clients from around the world, and with internet bidders and the Simulcast in Los Angeles, the bidding was inevitably competitive, taking 4 ½ hours to sell all 138 Lots.  Kim Martin a representative for the Crossroads Centre said: “We feel [the sale’s] a tremendous success. We’re excited the auction raised the amount of money it did, and we’re grateful for the organizers and the many bidders who participated…”

Perhaps the auction’s appeal is best surmised by Clapton fan and musician Robert Ender who attended this sale and the two previous Clapton Crossroads Auctions which we also worked on when he said: “..Any connection with Eric adds some kind of musical mojo…”

Highlights and press commentary

The official press release from Bonhams New York

The Top Ten lots of the auction

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