Elvis’ iconic ‘Sun Sessions’ Martin D-18 guitar goes up for auction

Discussion in 'Other Cool Guitars' started by lordhelmet, Jul 22, 2020.

How much will Elvis' guitar make?

  1. $1m - $2m

  2. $2m - $3m

  3. $3m - $4m

    0 vote(s)
  4. $4m - $5m

  5. $5m - $6m

  6. >$6m

  1. lordhelmet

    lordhelmet Electromatic

    Apr 5, 2020
    "Elvis’ iconic ‘Sun Sessions’ Martin D-18 guitar goes up for auction today, starting at over a million dollars"


    There was a big discussion about the Kurt Cobain $6m Martin a while ago. Also which guitar could or should top that, but I never thought about this guitar...
    Place your bet - how much will it make?
    Minimum is 1.200.000 $,
    9 days and 50 minutes left.
    Link to the listing:

    My bet: $2,5m
    Merc likes this.
  2. Merc

    Merc Country Gent

    May 6, 2017
    This one really should belong within the hallowed grounds of Graceland for fans to see in person. If this guitar could only talk...
  3. JeffreyLeePierre

    JeffreyLeePierre Country Gent

    More than 6M. That guitar is history.
    Crisis is not for everyone, I'm pretty sure there are enough people who can afford it and will make the price skyrocket.
    Most probably, it will not be played, which is a sad fate for a guitar.
    lathoto likes this.
  4. lordhelmet

    lordhelmet Electromatic

    Apr 5, 2020
    ...or the equally hallowed grounds of the Sun Studios, full circle! ;)
    Been there in 2011 (both Graceland an SS) that was a great experience!
    Merc likes this.
  5. Merc

    Merc Country Gent

    May 6, 2017
    That’s two of my top five places to see before I’m six feet under.
    thunder58 and lordhelmet like this.
  6. wabash slim

    wabash slim Gretschified

    Feb 10, 2010
    lafayette in
    It'll wind up in Jim Irsay's guitar vault.
  7. afire

    afire Country Gent

    Hmm. Tough to say. On the one hand, it's the most iconic guitar I can ever coming up for auction recently, other than maybe John Lennon's J-160E. Not as much exposure as the D-28, but have been there at the beginning should count for something. And Elvis wasn't one of those players who is associated with a bunch of guitars. In his prime, he played a Martin dreadnought, and this is one of two. Lennon's J-160E brought 2.5 million, but that guitar wasn't the one of the one's he was most associated with.

    On the other hand, people who even remember Elvis in his prime are in their 70s. Jim Irsay, and most crazy rich people, will only remember fat sequinned Vegas Elvis. Actually, bidders born after 1970 might be the better market, since they didn't witness his decline first-hand, and know him primarily as the cool young Elvis.

    I think the Cobain Martin was a massive outlier. My guess is that this will be more inline with Lennonn's J-160E, so my vote $2m - $3m.
    Chet Harrison likes this.
  8. loudnlousy

    loudnlousy Gretschified

    Oct 18, 2015
    Tough question. Usually pop-idols`s guitars sell for more then guitar hero stuff. In this case I would think it will auction above 2 millions but not much more.
  9. Gretschtim1

    Gretschtim1 Country Gent

    Dec 4, 2012
    Dundalk, Md
    Damn I missed the auction by a few days. I would have liked to buy that guitar...:D.
  10. salvatore

    salvatore Gretschie

    Nov 29, 2017
    Durham, NC
    John Lennon: “Without Elvis, there’d be nothing”.

    I place Elvis in the pantheon of the handful of 20th century masters when I consider an artist’s entire body of work, their skill in creating music unlike any of their peers [music that is original and timeless], and the level of musical genius in some of their live performances.

    I wouldn’t include Cobain on my list. But my subjective list has zero to do with the value of celebrity- owned instruments, as evidenced by the final bid on Cobain’s guitar.

    It’ll be interesting to see what the Elvis - played Sun Studio- recorded Martin D-28 fetches.

    Personally, I have no idea what to expect. I remember John Lennon’s 1963 or 1964 Gretsch 6120 went for just over $600,000 not too long ago. It was a guitar he gifted to his cousin.

    Lennon’s Rickenbacker 325 or his Gibson J-160E are more closely associated to him. I’ll go out on a limb and say either of these guitars would go for more than his 6120.

    With an opening bid of over $1,000,000 on the D-28, who knows where it will end? We’ll see what kind of value Elvis conjures up in 2020.
  11. lathoto

    lathoto Gretschie

    Apr 23, 2020
    You know some say a prewar D-18 is really the ultimate Bluegrass guitar. Gently remove ELVI and show up for a parking lot picking session with that tone monster!
    mandobandit likes this.
  12. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    This is a tricky one IMO . Is his fan base still interested ? Think about it …. Elvis died 43 years ago at the age of 42 making him 85 had he lived . His fans were either his age or younger . So I give the fan base at 75 to 85 . Going to be interesting to see this sell . Just a thought …….….. ok , GO !
    YouFellowRebels likes this.
  13. thunder58

    thunder58 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Dec 23, 2010
    tappan ny
    Admin Post
    I voted 1-2 M
  14. Merc

    Merc Country Gent

    May 6, 2017
    I’m actually in disbelief how low this guitar brought in. I mean, this was the actual guitar that was used in both the studio and the early days of Elvis... delivering the birth of rock and roll to masses. Even if it’s a generational reason as @thunder58 suggested or simply the Rona thing, I don’t get it. Could it simply be because of poor marketing/advertising from the auction house?
    YouFellowRebels and thunder58 like this.
  15. afire

    afire Country Gent

    I don't know if that's the case here, but it certainly can be. I seem to recall that there was a big kerfuffle surrounding the auctioning of one of Roger McGuinn's Rickenbackers. Lots of acrimony around how it was handled and promoted.

    FWIW, I think his D-28 would bring more.
    Merc likes this.
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