World’s Most Expensive Musical Instruments
Each and every one of the world’s most famous musicians had their own favorite musical instrument that made them famous and vice versa. Nowadays, these instruments are just as renowned as their owners were, if not even more, and so it makes sense that they would have immense worth. We will now present some of the most expensive musical instruments in the world, some owing their worth to their legendary owners while others are appreciated for their accomplished craftsmen.
Hammer Violin by Antonio Stradivari
Since Antonio Stradivari was known to be one of the best violin manufacturers in the world, this particular example could not come cheap. This stunning Hammer Violin was put under the hammer in 2006 for a whopping price tag of $3.5 million, and it was previously owned by a 19th century Swedish collector named Christian Hammer.
As expected for such a valuable piece, the musical instrument swapped quite a few hands over the decades, and it was even used by famous Japanese violinist Kyoko Takezawa for 12 years.
Eric Clapton Stratocaster Guitar by Fender
As one of the most appreciated guitars in the world, the Fender Stratocaster was made during the 1950s and was sold at auction for no less than $959,500. Also known as the Blackie, this exceptional instrument was used by some of the most iconic rock stars including Jimi Hendrix, Stevie Ray Vaughn and even Eric Clapton, who used it for 15 years.
Clapton bought 3 Stratocasters in Nashville for pennies since they were out of fashion at the time. The Blackie was made out of those 3 guitars and became one of the most legendary musical instruments in the world.
OM-45 Deluxe Guitar by Martin
This exquisite OM-45 guitar was made by none other than famed guitar maker C.F. Martin and Company, which has been manufacturing guitars in the USA since the 19th century. The OM-45 Deluxe was manufactured in 1930 as part of a limited edition of 15 examples, one of them being owned by Roy Rogers.
The guitar was previously a part of the Roy Rogers and Dale Evans Museum in Missouri, but it was sold in 2009 for a whopping price tag of $554,500.
Viola by Gasparo Bertolotti da Salo
Renowned Italian instrument maker Gasparo Bertolotti da Salo made only 60 examples of this exquisite viola, all of them flaunting unmatched craftsmanship and high quality. Since it was in perfect condition even thought it was manufactured in the 16th century, this exquisite Gasparo Bertolotti da Salo viola was sold at auction for no less than $542,000.
Violoncello by Gennaro Gagliano
This particular instrument was created by Gennaro Gagliano in 1765, but experts had to actually prove this fact in 2009 before being able to auction off the item in for $362,500. The choice of materials, style and patterns all coincided with other masterpieces signed by Gennaro Gagliano around the same period, which is why this exquisite violoncello was deemed original.
Violin by Carlo Giuseppe Testore
Carlo Giuseppe Testore was well versed in the art of creating musical instruments, which is why he became one of the most appreciated craftsmen of the 17th and early 18th century. His hands shaped numerous violas, cellos, double bass and violins, one of which was put under the hammer for $218,500. His creations are so incredible that they are actually preferred by experienced musicians even to this day. This particular violin was created by Testore in 1701 in Milan.
Viola de Gamba by Pieter Rombouts
The fabulous Viola de Gamba by Pieter Rombouts was sold at auction in 2009 for a whopping price tag of $212,500. Due to its exceptional high quality and sublime sound, this splendid viola was still being used in recordings in 1997, but its roots can be traced as far as the Renaissance period in Spain and Morocco. Rare, beautiful and incredibly well made, this viola de Gamba was definitely worth every penny.
Violin by Giovanni Batista Ceruti
Giovanni Batista Ceruti started creating violins at the age of 40, but he was previously involved in the textile industry. Since his country was going through a crisis at the time, Giovanni was forced to build his violins from cheap wood, which encouraged him even further to express his amazing artisanship.
Therefore, his violins became some of the most appreciated in the world as time passed, since they managed to prove their durability and quality. In 2009, a stunning 1794 Giovanni Batista Ceruti violin was auctioned off for $158,500.
Classical Guitar by Antonio de Torres
It’s a well-known fact that the Spanish were quite good at playing guitars and making them as well, which is why it comes as no surprise that this Antonio de Torres classical guitar is so exceptional in all regards. Actually, most modern guitars are made following the guidelines of Torres, and he must have known that he will become famous one day since he started signing his products in 1871.
As a matter of fact, the guitars that he built prior to 1871 are the most valuable. One fine example is this gorgeous piece from 1864 that was put under the hammer by Christie’s in 2007 for $157,000.
Classical Guitar by Robert Bouchet
Since Robert Bouchet made just 150 guitars in his lifetime, it’s no wonder that each and every one of them is highly valued. One of the most important is a 1964 guitar that he made in Paris, which also bears his signature as well as the address where Bouchet was living when he created it. Highly appreciated by noteworthy musicians such as Julian Bream, this exquisite guitar was sold in 2009 at auction for a whopping price of $122,500.
Charlie Parker’s Saxophone
Also known “Yardbird” and “Bird”, Charlie Parker was an American jazz saxophonist and composer that was valued for his revolutionary and daring approach to jazz music. His famous saxophone is currently one of the world’s most expensive one, since it was sold for a high price ranging between $30,000 and $35,000.
As one of the world’s most talented jazz musicians, Benny Goodman was also known as the ‘King of Swing” or the “Patriarch of the Clarinet”. He performed almost all of his adult life, even when he was in his senior years, when he also showed an interest in classical music. His clarinet was sold for $25,000, which is a fitting price for the possession of such an iconic personality.
Dizzy Gillespie trumpet
American jazz trumpeter John Birks “Dizzy” Gillespie is perhaps one of the most famous and loved jazz figures of all time. He was very much involved in the development of bebop and modern jazz, and he shared his vast knowledge with many other trumpeters such as Lee Morgan. Dizzy’s favorite trumpet was sold for $31,000.
Keith Moon’s Silver Kit
English musician Keith John Moon was best known for being a drummer in the famous rock band called”the Who”. He became famous for his unique drumming stile and for his sometimes eccentric behavior, which is to be expected to a certain degree from a rock star. He is sometimes referred to as the “greatest drummer in history”, which is why the Keith Moon Silver Kit was sold for no less than $252,487.
Crystal Music Company’s Handcrafted Transparent Grand Pianos
The only company in the world that specializes in creating handcrafted transparent Grand Pianos is the Crystal Music Company. As expected, their products do not come cheap, but they do have a unique charm and a certain allure, not to mention their extreme exclusivity.
Apart from their bewitching transparency, these exquisite musical instruments are sometimes adorned with precious Swarovski crystals, diamonds or other precious stones, while gold plated parts can also be implemented on request should the client afford to pay for them.