NEW YORK (Reuters) - Rock legend Jimi Hendrix’s first recording contract worth $1 and erotic audio and video tapes sent by Madonna to her old bodyguard went on sale in an online auction on Monday.
Other artists and prominent figures featured among the more than 450 items offered in the rock ‘n’ roll and pop art auction on www.gottahaverockandroll.com include John Lennon, Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, Bruce Springsteen, the Rolling Stones and Eminem. The auction will run through August 5.
Hendrix’s earliest known contract for $1 dated October 15, 1965, could fetch up to $250,000, auctioneers said. It was signed by Hendrix and music producers PPX Enterprises of New York for Hendrix to play and sing exclusively for three years.
The contract — on which Hendrix’s first name is spelled “Jimmy” — also granted him 1 percent of the retail sales from his recordings.
Two cassette tapes holding 17 minutes of messages that Madonna left in 1992 and 1993 on the answering machine of James Albright, the bodyguard who became her lover, are expected to fetch between $30,000 and $40,000.
An intimate home video sent to Albright featuring Madonna in a hotel room with castmates shot during the making of the 1993 film “Dangerous Game” has an estimate draw of $12,000 to $14,000.
Also up for sale are copies of love letters faxed to Albright by Madonna between 1992 and 1994 using the code name “Lola Montez.”
The auction house described the video as “very personal and intimate” but its representatives said they were not allowed to say exactly what was on it. Neither the audio tapes nor the home video are being sold with copyright so the owner will not be able to sell the tapes to a public forum.
Another top lot is a life-size prop of Schwarzenegger’s T-800 terminator used in various action sequences in the film “Terminator 2: Judgment Day” that has an estimated selling price of $150,000 to $200,000.
Also on sale are Dylan’s original 1962 working lyrics for his song “A Hard Rain’s a-Gonna Fall,” jackets worn by Lennon and U.S. rapper Eminem’s outfit that parodied Michael Jackson in his “Just Lose It” music video are also on sale.
Gottahaveit.com’s chief executive, Peter Siegel, said he expected the auction to fetch high prices even in tough economic times.
“These items are not really economic-centric,” he said. “Pop culture is international, there is still a lot of money out there and these items are relatively still a bargain compared to pieces of art from unknown artists who may become famous.”
Some of the items can be viewed in person at the Gotta Have It store in New York. The bidding will be open until August 5.
Reporting by Christine Kearney, editing by Michelle Nichols and Bill Trott