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1999 Eric Clapton Chrisite's Guitar Auction: Complete Sale Details

On 24 June 1999, Christie’s Auction House in New York City conducted a sale of 100 of Eric Clapton’s guitars, plus several amplifiers and Versace Guitar Straps. Clapton sold his beloved possessions as the first endowment of the Crossroads Foundation. The foundation funds Crossroads Centre at Antigua, a drug and alcohol residential rehabilitation facility, founded by Eric Clapton in 1997.

The total amount raised at the 1999 guitar auction was $4,452,000 (net for Crossroads Center Foundation). With buyer’s premiums, the amount totaled $5,072,350. The Buyer’s Premium for this sale was calculated at 15% of the final price up to $50,000. For amounts above $50,000, it was 15% of the first $50,000 plus 10% of the amount in excess of $50,000.

Some of the more significant guitars sold as follows (buyer’s premium not included):

1954 Fender Stratocaster (Sunburst) $190,000
1956 Fender Stratocaster (Sunburst) known as “Brownie” $450,000
1958 “Mary Kay” Fender Stratocaster $50,000
1958 Gibson Explorer (Natural) used during 1983 ARMS Tour $120,000
1959 Gibson ES335TD (Sunburst) $70,000
1959 Gibson J200 (Sunburst) $78,000
1974 Martin 000-28 (Natural) with Rodeo Man Sticker $155,000
1986 Pewter Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model $95,000
1991 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature “Smoker’s Model” $68,000

At the conclusion of the 1999 auction, Eric Clapton said, “I can’t believe it. I am totally overwhelmed. I had no idea the auction would do so well. I want to say thank you to everyone who showed up and made this such a memorable occasion. I also want to say thank you on behalf of all the patients who will get free treatment as a result of this sale.”

Following Eric Clapton's second guitar auction in 2004, the prices realized at the 1999 sale seemed like bargains.

Here is a complete list of the guitars sold with final sale price (does not include buyer’s premium):

Lot #1 - 1994 Martin J12-40 $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000
Used for the opening number of the 1994-1995 Blues Tour.

Lot #2 - 1996 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature (Midnight Blue Metallic) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Finished to match Eric’s Mercedes Benz. Played by Eric at the Pavarotti & Friends Concert in Italy on 28 June 1996.

Lot #3 - 1951 Gibson J-185 (Sunburst) $14,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #4 - 1998 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Flamed Maple Sunburst) $22,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #5 - 1985 Gibson ES-335DOT (Reissue - Natural) $38,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #6 - 1996 Martin OM-28 VR (Natural) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Used during the recording of Pilgrim; similar to one Eric played on Unplugged.

Lot #7 - 1997 Gibson Les Paul Custom (Sunburst) $28,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #8 - Circa 1960s Silvertone (Sunburst) $24,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $1,000 - $2,000)
Autographed to Eric Clapton by Les Paul.

Lot #9 - 1995 Gibson B.B. King Lucille (Black) $45,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Autographed by B.B. King

Lot #10 - 1996 Gibson Explorer (Black) $24,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #11 - Circa 1960 Harmony Stratatone Mars Model (Sunburst) $16,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $1,000 - $2,000)

Lot #12 - 1985 Martin Shenandoah 000-2832 (Natural) $21,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)
Generally played by Andy Fairweather Low while on tour with Eric.

Lot #13 - 1994 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Olympic White) $50,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Reminded Eric Clapton of the Mary Kaye Stratocaster (Lot #53), used on stage in the 1990s and for soundtrack work, including The Van.

Lot #14 - 1991 Gibson Firebird Reissue (Red) $34,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)
Played by Eric Clapton onstage in Philadelphia on 13 April 1995.

Lot #15 - 1970s Gibson Les Paul Custom (Cherry) $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #16 - 1999 Gibson Les Paul Standard (Sunburst) $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #17 - Circa 1962 Gibson SG Les Paul Standard (Cherry Red) $30,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #18 - 1958 Gretsch Chet Atkins Tennessean (Translucent Red) $22,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #19 - 1959 Martin 00-17 (Natural) $17,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000)

Lot #20 - Late 1950s Hofner Club 60 (Natural) $24,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #21 - 1959 Gibson es-335TDN (Natural) $45,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000)

Lot #22 - 1990s Vincente Sanchis Flamenco Model 41 (Cypress) $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #23 - 1960s Coral Sitar (Red / Black Crackle) $36,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Eric experimented with it; he loaned it Pete Townshend (The Who)for several years.

Lot #24 - 1919 Martin 0-18 (Natural) $44,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000)

Lot #25 - Circa 1920 Gibson L-3 (Red Mahogany Sunburst) $24,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #26 - 1940 Gibson L-7 (Sunburst) $22,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #27 - 1990s Beltona Tri-Cone (Nickel) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000

Lot #28 - 1970s Gibson Les Paul Recording Model (Walnut) $40,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Autographed to Eric by Les Paul. Eric played it occasionally.

Lot #29 - Circa 1962 Gibson SG Les Paul Junior (Cherry Red) $30,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #30 - Circa 1928 Gibson L-3 (Sunburst) $16,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #31 - Circa 1940s Gibson L-50 (Sunburst) $20,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000)
Bought by Eric Clapton because he wanted to sound like Snooks Eaglin.

Lot #32 - Circa 1949 Gibson ES-125 (Sunburst) $32,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Used by Eric Clapton in the “Motherless Child” Video

Lot #33 - Circa late 1930s Kalamazoo (Sunburst) $17,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $1,000 - $2,000)

Lot #34 - 1960 Gibson ES330TD (Sunburst) $24,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #35 - 1994 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Olympic White) $50,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Pair to Lot #13, used on Pilgrim sessions.

Lot #36 - 1959 Gibson ES-225TD (Sunburst) $18,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000

Lot #37 - 1953 Gibson ES-295 (Sunburst) $21,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #38 - Fender / Versace Guitar Strap $14,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $800 - $1,200)

Lot #39 - 1996 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Black Green) $52,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Finished to match one of Eric’s Mercedes Benz C36

Lot #40 - Circa 1940 Gibson ES-100 (Sunburst) $17,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000)

Lot #41 - 1960 Gibson ES-330T (Sunburst) $22,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #42 - 1956 Gibson Byrdland (Sunburst) $52,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $15,000 - $20,000)

Lot #43 - Fender / Versace Guitar Strap $9,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $800 - $1,200)

Lot #44 - 1996 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Black / Green) $50,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Pait to Lot #39 - finished to match Eric Clapton’s Mercedes Benz C36.

Lot #45 - Circa late 1930s Kalamazoo (Sunburst) $24,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $1,000 - $2,000)
Bought by Eric Clapton in Memphis, Tennesse. He described it as a “hotel room” guitar.

Lot #46 - 1959 Gibson ES-335TD (Sunburst) $70,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000)

Lot #47 - 1993 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Ivory White) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #48 - 1957 Gibson Byrdland (Sunburst) $38,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000)

Lot #49 - 1997 Fender Broadcaster Relic (Blonde) $19,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #50 - 1994 Fender Stratocaster 40th Anniversary Concert Edition (Wine Red) $28,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #51 - 1941 Martin 00-18G (Natural) $24,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #52 - Late 1950s Fender Twin Amplifier $12,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #53 - 1958 Fender Stratocaster (Translucent Blonde) $55,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $20,000 - $40,000)
Gold plated metal parts. A “Mary Kaye” model because of the model’s association with 1950s guitarist Mary Kaye. Used by Eric Clapton during the Pilgrim recording sessions.

Lot #54 - Circa 1952 Gibson Super 400C (Sunburst) $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $12,000 - $18,000)

Lot #55 - 1956 Gibson Super 300C (Sunburst) $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000)

Lot #56 - 1990 National Reso-phonic Model M-1 (Sunburst) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #57 - Fender D’Aquisto (Natural) $22,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #58 - 1991 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton “Blackie” Signature Model $68,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)
The “Smoker’s Model.” A one-of-a-kind guitar made for Eric Clapton with a cigarette holder in the headstock.

Lot #59 - 1987 Guild GF-60NT (Natural) $20,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #60 - 1989 Guild F-46NT (Sunburst) $16,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #61 - 1982 Gibson Chet Atkins Standard (Natural) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #62 - 1986 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Pewter) $95,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000)
A prototype for Eric’s signature model. Painted to match a Mercedes Benz Eric owned at the time.

Lot #63 - 1987 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Torino Red) $60,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Finished to match one of Eric Clapton’s Ferraris. It was played by George Harrison or Andy Fairweather Low during the 1991 Rock Legends Japan Tour.

Lot #64 - 1987 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (7-Up Green) $50,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)
Custom color commissioned by Eric Clapton to match the fizzy drink can.

Lot #65 - 1988 Guild G-60NT (Natural) $18,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #66 - 1988 Guild F-61RNT (Natural) $17,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #67 - 1987 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Torino Red) $50,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)
Pair to Lot #63. Finished to match one of Eric Clapton’s Ferraris.

Lot #68 - Late 19th Century Salvador Ibanez (Natural) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #69 - 1990 James Trussart Steel Deville (Chrome) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #70 - 1990s Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (Gold / Snow Leopard) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #71 - 1982 Fender Stratocaster 1957 Reissue (Sunburst) $28,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #72 - 1992 Fender Telecaster 40th Anniversary Model (Sunburst) $62,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #73 - 1988 Pensa-Suhr (Honey) $45,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)
Gift to Eric Clapton from Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits).

Lot #74 - 1982 Roland G-505 Synthesizer Guitar (Candy Apple Red) $29,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #75 - 1986 Guild Nightbird (Green Metallic) $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)
Guild Guitar’s attempt at “7-Up” Green for Eric Clapton.

Lot #76 - 1980s Fender Stratocaster XII (Sunburst) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #77 - 1991 Taylor 955-C (Natural) $30,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)
Gift to Eric Clapton from Richie Sambora (Bon Jovi)

Lot #78 - 1987 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model (7-Up Green) $55,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000
Pair to Lot #64. Custom color requested by Eric Clapton to match the fizzy drink can.

Lot #79 - 1990 Gibson Chet Atkins Standard $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)
Used on stage by Eric Clapton during his Journeyman Tour.

Lot #80 - Fender / Versace Guitar Strap $15,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $800 - $1,200)

Lot #81 - 1990 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature “Blackie” Model $48,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #82 - Late 1950s Fender Twin Amplifier $16,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000)

Lot #83 - 1956 Gibson ES-350TN (Natural) $62,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $15,000 - $20,00)
Purchased as at tribute to Chuck Berry. Eric Clapton used it at a Chuck Berry tribute concert in 1986.

Lot #84 - 1959 Gibson J-200 (Sunburst) $78,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $8,000 - $12,000)

Lot #85 - Circa 1964 Gibson ES-345TD (Sunburst) $32,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $15,000 - $20,000)

Lot #86 - Circa 1980 Santa Cruz F-13 (Sunburst) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000)

Lot #87 - Circa 1980 Santa Cruz FTC-15 (Natural) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000)

Lot #88 - 1960s National Studio 66 Model (Black) $28,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $1,000 - $2,000)
Used in the filming of the movie, Water, in 1985.

Lot #89 - 1980s Fender Stratocaster Elite (Cream) $30,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #90 - 1980s Roger Griffin (Blue Metallic) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #91 - 1980s Fender Stratocaster Elite (Black) $26,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #92 - 1958 Gibson Explorer (Natural) $120,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: On Request)
Eric Clapton used this guitar at the London ARMS Concert on 21 September 1983

Lot #93 - 1979 Fender Stratocaster Anniversary Model (Silver Metallic) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #94 - Circa 1930s National Duolian (Nickel) $35,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $7,000)

Lot #95 - 1978 Guild D-55NT (Natural) $32,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000)

Lot #96 - 1974 Martion 000-28 (Natural) $155,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $12,000 - $18,000)
The “Rodeo Man” Guitar - Eric Clapton’s chief acoustic guitar during the 1970s and described as "very important" to him.

Lot #97 - Circa 1975 Telecaster (Translucent Blonde) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #98 - 1956 Fender Stratocaster (Sunburst) $80,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000)
Used extensively for touring and recording by Eric Clapton in the 1970s including Just One Night, Backless, Another Ticket and Slowhand.

Lot #99 - Dobro Electric 12-String (Natural) $28,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000

Lot #100 - Circa 1930 Gibson L-4 (Sunburst) $50,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $6,000 - $8,000)

Lot #101 - 1930s D’Angelico (Sunburst) $55,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $20,000 - $25,000)
Case was stenciled “Derek & The Dominos”

Lot #102 - 1930s D’Angelico Excel (Sunburst) $42,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000)

Lot #103 - 1954 Fender Stratocaster (Sunburst) $190,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000)

Lot #104 - 1952 Fender Telecaster (Natural) $90,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $15,000 - $20,000
Given to Eric Clapton by Carl Radle

Lot #105 - 1956 Fender Stratocaster (Tobacco Sunburst) “Brownie” $450,000
(Pre-Sale Estimate: $80,000 - $100,000)
Used extensively by Eric Clapton throughout the 70s on stage and in the studio. "Brownie" is pictured on the back cover of Layla & Other Assorted Love Songs.

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