Coming up this May in New York a rare Rickenbacker guitar once owned by George Harrison, and played by John Lennon will go up for bids as part of a Beatles themed auction.

Harrison bought the aforementioned guitar, a 1962 Rickenbacker 425, in Mount Vernon, Illinois, when he paid a two-week visit to his sister Louise in 1963.  He had the instrument painted black to resemble a guitar that Lennon was using onstage at that time.  Harrison played the guitar extensively for a while, including during The Beatles' first appearance on the TV show Ready Steady Go! in October 1963, and in the studio when the band recorded "I Want to Hold Your Hand."  In addition, Lennon was photographed playing the instrument backstage at an October 1963 concert in Scotland.  Harrison eventually gave the Rickenbacker to George Peckham, a friend and fellow musician who worked as an engineer for The Beatles' Apple Studios.

 

The Music Icons 2014 sale will be held by Julien's Auctions on May 16th and 17th at the Hard Rock New York in Times Square.

The guitar is expected to fetch between $400,000 and $600,000.  The instrument will come with letters from Harrison's widow, Olivia, and his one-time assistant, Caroline Foxwell, verifying that George gave the guitar to Peckham, as well as a letter from Peckham telling the story behind how it came into his possession.

The memorabilia will be on display at Hard Rock Café New York from May 12 through May 16 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET daily.  Bidding at the auction can be done in person, or online at JuliensLive.com.