Rare Johnny Ramone Guitar Brings $71,000 at Auction
Johnny Ramone’s Mosrite guitar, one of only nine Mosrites the legendary punk guitarist owned, sold at auction Thursday for a whopping $71,875, Boston-based auction RR Auction announced. The red guitar, personally owned and used by Ramone for at least seven years, was also autographed by the Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, “Best always, Johnny Ramone, 5/22/90.”
“One of just nine Mosrite guitars owned by Johnny Ramone known to exist – it is not surprising that it was able to achieve such an impressive figure,” RR Auction Executive VP Bobby Livingston said in a statement. The RR Auction notes that the six-string was Ramone’s preferred instrument for television appearances where close-ups would showcase the guitar.
In 1980, Ramone sold the guitar to his friend and former Ramones driver Gene Frawley, who subsequently dealt it to another buyer.
The RR Auction also featured a handwritten letter from Jerry Garcia to an unspecified Vogue model he met at a party. That two-part letter, penned by the singer during the Grateful Dead’s Radio City Hall residency in New York in 1980, sold for $32,500.
The Johnny Ramone guitar is the latest big ticket Ramones item to the auction block: In October, RR Auction also sold Dee Dee Ramone’s stage-used Fender Precision bass guitar – used during the band’s Eighties tours – for just under $38,000.
Also at that October auction, Joey Ramone’s handwritten lyrics to his solo track “Maria Bartiromo,” an ode to the business news anchor the late Ramones singer had a crush on, were purchased for $1,886 by Bartiromo herself. A pair of Joey Ramone’s amber-colored circular prescription glasses also sold for $12,400, his black leather pants for $7,100 and a leather jacket for $7,000.
In 2013, the contents of Joey Ramone’s record collection also hit the auction block by the rocker’s estate. The 97-vinyl collection featured albums by Cream, Bob Dylan, Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Iggy Pop, Lou Reed, T. Rex, the Kinks, the Human League, Toots and the Maytals and Yes.