Johnny Cash memorabilia up for auction in L.A.

Tue Oct 26, 2010 5:30am EDT
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Johnny Cash fans who were outbid at the big Sotheby's estate sale in 2004 will have another chance to acquire guitars, costumes and other memorabilia owned by the Man in Black during a Los Angeles auction in December, organizers said on Monday.

Almost 1,000 lots, with a total estimated price range of $400,000 to $600,000, will go under the hammer at the December 5 sale, Julien's Auctions said. A free public exhibition in Beverly Hills begins on November 19.

Items include the blue denim jumpsuit worn by Cash in the infamous 1969 Jim Marshall photograph that depicts him wagging his middle finger into the camera lens. The country star was rehearsing at California's San Quentin Prison, and taped the show for a hit live album.

The suit, embroidered on the front with "Johnny Cash Show" and "Cash," carries a sales estimate of $3,000 to $5,000. But company president and CEO Darren Julien, who worked with Sotheby's on its Cash auction, predicted it could sell for more than $40,000.

The new auction is already attracting strong interest from investors and overseas fans, he said.

"Johnny Cash is very much a global icon. His fan base is as extensive as Michael Jackson's," Julien said.

Most of the items are being sold by "family-related" entities, he said, but he declined to reveal their identity. An unspecified portion of the proceeds will benefit MusiCares, a charity that helps musicians with health and financial problems.

Fans who want to make a grand entrance will surely vie for a knee-length black cape that unaccountably found its way into Cash's wardrobe. It is valued at $2,000 to $3,000.

Among the guitars is a Martin D-28 acoustic on which Cash wrote the first four lines of his early hit "I Walk the Line" and signed his name. Its estimated range is $20,000 to $30,000.   Continued...

<p>A stage hand puts the final touchs on a large photo of the late country music legend Johnny Cash, before the Cash tribute concert in Nashville, November 10, 2003. REUTERS/John Sommers II</p>