In early December of 2013, a 1964 Fender Stratocaster that belonged to Bob Dylan became the most expensive guitar ever sold at auction, going for $965,000. It was the guitar that Dylan used at the Newport Folk Festival on July 7th, 1965. The concert is famously known for Dylan transitioning from acoustic folk to electric rock, where he was searching for a “wild, mercury sound.” Guitarist Al Kooper and the Paul Butterfield Blues Band backed Mr Dylan for the three electrified songs at the festival.
“I did this very crazy thing,” Dylan said at the time. “I didn’t know what was going to happen, but they certainly booed, I’ll tell you that. You could hear it all over the place.”
In the clip above, Christie’s specialist Tom Lecky explains the significance of the guitar, the guitar case and a brief background of the festival. If you would like to read more about the importance of the guitar and the history of Mr. Dylan’s performance, check out the Christie’s Lot Description page.