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The Week In Guitar: a $699 boygenius signature and a £700,000 burst

It’s been a busy week in guitar culture, but here are the most notable news stories, trends and weird stuff we’ve seen over the last seven days.

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Image: Gretsch

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Welcome back to The Week In Guitar! Your rundown of the last seven days of the guitariverse. Yes, NAMM dominated the conversation over the last week, but it wasn’t the only thing to happen. Let’s dive in!

Mark Knopfler’s guitar and amp collection fetches nearly £9 million at auction

Mark Knopfler’s guitar and amp collection managed to bring in nearly £9 million at auction. In a (surprisingly entertaining!) livestreamed auction, many of the guitars fetched many times their guide prices.

Of particular note, of course, was an original 1959 Les Paul Standard, bought by Knopfler in 1999. This fetched a rather tidy £693,000 in the end, which is, insanely, not that much higher than the average burst goes for. So, maybe more notably, a 1983 reissue Les Paul fetched a similarly massive £592,200 – a price probably helped by the fact that it was played on the Money For Nothing and Brothers In Arms records.

At least a quarter of the proceeds from the auction will be divided equally and donated to the British Red Cross, Tusk, and Brave Hearts of the North East.

Gretsch and boygenius team up for an affordable signature model

boygenius – the indie supergroup featuring Julien Baker, Phoebe Bridgers and Lucy Dacus, have teamed up with Gretsch to launch a signature guitar, and, pleasingly, it’s under a grand! The double-cut semi-hollow features proper Filter’Trons, a trapeze tailpiece and a unique set of inlays based on the band’s imagery: a tooth, and a three of cups. It’s a very, very cool looking guitar, and given the band’s standing, it’s probably going to sell like hot cakes that have been iced with pure indie cred.

UK High Court rules estates of Noel Redding and Mitch Mitchell can sue Sony for Royalties

London’s High Court declared on Monday that the estates of bassist Noel Redding and drummer Mitch Mitchell can now sue Sony in order to receive a share of the recording copyrights of three classic Jimi Hendrix albums. The case, which started back in 2022, argued that the pair “have not been compensated for their work and both died in relative poverty.”

Redding and Mitchell joined The Jimi Hendrix Experience in 1966, going on to perform on all three of Hendrix’s legendary studio albums, Are You Experienced, Axis: Bold As Love and Electric Ladyland – but there are now many more reworked records bearing Hendrix’s name, and Redding and Mitchell’s work by extension. The ruling now means that the case will go to a full trial, most likely taking place in 2025.

Quick Riffs

Quote Of The Week

“I hope the traditional guitar solo dies a slow and painful death”

Marty Friedman, of all people, has claimed that the traditional solo needs to die. Maybe he has a point. Do we really need guitarists to step in and do eight bars of noodling in the middle of every song?

The Encore

Literally no other outlet is brave enough to bring you this essential reporting.

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