John Lennon's guitar has broken the record for the highest-selling piece of Beatles memorabilia after it was sold for an eye-watering £1.5 million.

John Lennon's famous Hootenanny acoustic sold for a whopping sum

John Lennon's famous Hootenanny acoustic sold for a whopping sum

The 12-string Hootenanny acoustic, which was used by the late music legend on the iconic group's 1965 album and film 'Help!', had been sitting unused in an attic for the past 50 years.

Initially, the guitar wound up in the hands of Scottish musician Gordon Waller, of pop duo Peter and Gordon, but he passed it onto a colleague.

The most recent owners, who reside in Britain, had received an estimate of £485,000 to £647,000.

The Julien's Auctions sale took place at the Hard Rock Cafe in New York on Wednesday (29.05.24).

David Goodman, chief executive of Julien's Auctions, commented: “We are absolutely thrilled and honoured to have set a new world record with the sale of John Lennon's lost hootenanny guitar.

“This guitar is not only a piece of music history but a symbol of John Lennon's enduring legacy.

“[The sale] symbolises what we do best at Julien's - creating opportunities for people to reconnect with the cultural touchstones that have shaped the moments that matter most throughout their lives.”

The record-breaking sale comes after late Beatles guitarist George Harrison's sitar was sold at auction for $66,993.

The musician bought the instrument on Oxford Street in London in 1965, and he used it during the recording sessions for 'Norwegian Wood', which featured on the band's 'Rubber Soul' album, and it just so happens that the Hootenanny guitar was used for the recording too.

The latter instrument - which was invented in medieval India - ignited Harrison's lifelong passion for Indian music, culture, and Hindu spirituality, while it also sparked a broader interest in sitars among other Western musicians.

Harrison visited India for the first time in 1966, where he studied the sitar under the tutelage of Ravi Shankar.

The instrument ultimately helped Harrison to develop a deeper understanding of Eastern melodies and philosophy.

Harrison subsequently created a series of Indian-style compositions, such as 'Within You Without You' and 'Love You To'.

And Harrison's iconic sitar sold at Nate D. Sanders Auctions in Los Angeles for the substantial sum of money.

Meanwhile, in February, it was announced that Sir Sam Mendes is set to make four separate films about each member of The Beatles.

The 58-year-old filmmaker previously pitched the idea of making four separate movies about Sir Paul McCartney, Sir Ringo Starr, John Lennon and George Harrison to executives in Hollywood, and Tom Rothman and Elizabeth Gabler, of Sony Pictures Entertainment, were both wowed by his ambitious plans.

Sam - who will direct all four films - told Deadline: "We went out to Los Angeles just before Christmas to pitch the project, and it’s fair to say we were met with universal enthusiasm.

"The reason Sony stood out from competing offers was down to Tom and Elizabeth’s passion for the idea, and commitment to propelling these films theatrically in an innovative and exciting way."