NEW YORK (Reuters) - Bob Dylan's
lyrics for "Like a Rolling Stone" and "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall"
are expected to be the highlights of Sotheby's rock and roll auction
next week, which will include memorabilia from the Beatles, the
Rolling Stones and Elvis Presley.
The handwritten, annotated manuscript for "Like a Rolling
Stone," considered one of the most influential songs in postwar
music, could sell for as much as $2 million, while the lyrics
for "A Hard Rain" have a pre-sale estimate of $400,000 to
Other top items in the June 24 sale in New York include one of
Presley's flamboyant jumpsuits from his days performing in Las
Vegas, a piano played by singers David Bowie, Elton John, John
Lennon and Aerosmith, and an infamous contract signed by Jimi
"A lot of this material is the soundtrack for a generation,"
Richard Austin, Sotheby's head of books and manuscripts, said
about its first dedicated music history sale in more than a
The 150 lots in the sale, dubbed A Rock & Roll History: Presley
to Punk, come from collectors and people who worked in the music
industry. They range in price from an estimated $200-$300 up to
$2 million for the Dylan manuscript.
"Bob Dylan is probably the most studied rock performer of the
last 40 years," said Austin. "Rock and roll was so intrinsically
tied to the social change in the 60s and also to the generation
that was coming up."
The auction will include the smashed guitar played by the late
Kurt Cobain of Nirvana in 1989, photographs, signed album
covers, Grammy awards, original artwork, drawings and clothing
worn by singers Michael Jackson, Sly Stone and Jimmy Page of Led
Presley's jumpsuit could bring in as much as $300,000 and the 1965
contract in which Hendrix agreed to play exclusively for PPX
Enterprises for three years for the advance of $1 has a high
pre-sale estimate of as much as $200,000. The settlement agreement
to break the contract is also being auctioned for $40,000 to
"Elvis always is an icon, and there are quite a few items from
Elvis, as well as punk material and posters from the 60s and 70s,"
Sotheby's decided to hold the sale now to test the market and to see
what collectors are interested in buying. Earlier this month,
original manuscripts and drawings by former Beatle John Lennon sold
for $2.9 million, more than double the estimated price.
"One of the ways we planned the sale was to give a range of
material, both in terms of its estimate and what kind of material it
is," he said, adding that there has been a positive change in the
price of the best rock and roll material in the past decade.
"The market is becoming a little more mature and advanced and we had
the chance to offer the Dylan manuscripts, which I think are
(Reporting by Patricia Reaney; Editing by Piya Sinha-Roy and