Auction Sees McCartney’s Bass Crowned Most Expensive Ever Auctioned

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A Yamaha BB-1200 used by the legendary Paul McCartney during his time with Wings has sold for $496,100 at auction over the weekend. According to Guitar World, it now holds the record for the most expensive bass ever auctioned, previously held by Rolling Stones alum Bill Wyman’s 1969 Fender Mustang bass, sold last year for $38,400.

McCartney’s bass sold as part of the Guitar Icons: A Music Instrument Auction to Benefit Music Rising in Los Angeles. The event was launched in support of live music in New Orleans by Music Rising, music outreach co-founded in 2005 by U2 guitarist the Edge, and producer Bob Ezrin.

Edge’s custom Fender Stratocaster from U2’s I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For also sold for $496,100. While Eddie Vedder’s smashed Telecaster ($226,200), a Noel Gallagher Nash Telemaster ($51,425) and a Bruce Springsteen Tele ($72,600) were also sold at the auction. Some instruments have been signed by the musician, making them a really nice buy for their new, respected owners.

The Edge took time “to thank everyone involved in this amazing auction, including the artists who generously gave their personal instruments and the bidders from around the globe who helped us break world records.

The proceeds Music Rising earned will help bring live music back to life in a part of the country whose musical culture has been hugely influential in the world. We are indebted to all of the supporters of Music Rising who have given us a great opportunity to return to our roots and help those musicians in need.”

Echoing those sentiments, Ezrin said, “we are so thankful to all of the artists, supporters and bidders who helped make Guitar Icons an auction for the history books. New Orleans musicians are the custodians of a unique music heritage, passing it down through the generations and influencing so many genres of music we enjoy. The proceeds from this auction will help musicians from the region who suffered financially through this pandemic.”

See the full Music Rising benefit auction catalogue here.