Well, someone out there still has discretionary income: The drum head that appeared on the cover of Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band went up for auction yesterday at Christie’s London outpost, and it realized a price of £541,250, or $1,067,346. Imagine if that money had been used to, you know, buy actual Beatles albums–I’m sure the halls of EMI are filled with people fantasizing that exact scenario. The price of the drum almost makes the £421,250 ($830,706) that John Lennon’s handwritten lyrics for “Give Peace A Chance” went for seem quaint, no? Details on the drum skin’s measurements and materials after the jump.
The legendary hand-painted bass drumskin used on the front cover of the Beatles’ ground-breaking 1967 album Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, the drumskin painted in gold, red, blue, green, pink and magenta and mounted on hardboard — 30.5in. (77.5cm.) diam, the skin mounted on a matched rope tension wooden bass drum painted in regulation military blue and red, with laminated hardwood shell with Boosey & Hawkes Ltd., 295 Regent Street, London. label [drum not original]; accompanied by a corresponding copy of the album; and a hand-written letter from Sir Peter Blake, signed, stating This is to confirm that…I have examined the painted drumskin that appears on the L.P. record ‘Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club’ by The Beatles, and that is the same drumskin, and is the genuine, original one painted by Joe Ephgrave…, 1p. (3)
Imagine how much more money would have been spent had the drum been real!
The Beatles [christies.com]