The beauty of sound, precision of craftsmanship, and even the hands that played them, these five instruments are some of the world’s most expensive musical treasures.
Eric Clapton’s Blackie Stratocaster Guitar by Fender
Possibly the best guitar in the world and the second most expensive musical instrument in the world. The Fender Stratocaster is favorited by rock musicians the world over. Designed in 1950, the guitar became a status symbol, played by the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Buddy Holly, Stevie Ray Vaughn, and most famously Eric Clapton. Clapton’s was a composite of three different Fender Stratocasters built in the ‘50s, which he used for 15 years before it sold at auction for a record-breaking $959,500 price tag.
The Hammer Violin by Antonio Stradivari
Undoubtedly one of the best violin makers in the world, Antonio Stradivari’s creations were highly sought after. One in particular, named after its original 19th century owner, Swedish collector Christian Hammer, it changed hands a number of times, was extensively played by Japanese violinist Kyoko Takezawa for 12 years, until it sold at auction in 2006 for $3,544,000 making this the most expensive musical instrument in the world!
Gennaro Gagliano’s Violoncello
Gagliano’s instruments are regarded to be among the best-made in the world, not surprising from a family of string instrument makers. The quality of sound, thanks to the material and unparalleled design, is considered to be near-perfect in this particular Violoncello. After initial debate, it was proven to be a Gagliano and sold for $362,500 at auction in 2009.
Viola de Gambia by Pieter Rombouts
Designed and made in Spain, the Viola de Gambia is also one of the rarest instruments in the world. The small instrument is rooted in the Spain and Moroccan traditions of the Renaissance period, its beauty of sound unparalleled. It features a skull design on the top handle and was still being used as recently as 1997 in pop recordings. It sold in 2009 for $212,500 at auction.
Robert Bouchet’s Classical Guitar
As one of only 150 made during his lifetime, French guitar maker Robert Bouchet’s 1964 creation was designed for classical musician Julian Bream in Paris. This one in particular feature Bouchet’s signature, Parisian address, and the guitar’s date of conception. These unique qualities garnered it a world-record breaking price of $122,500 at auction in 2009.
All made with love, all made for greatness. These instruments are the stuff of dreams, and wouldn’t we love to play them, just once…