Randy Bachman of BTO and The Guess Who Puts Famous Axes on the Auction Block

Randy Bachman - Courtesy

Release – Randy Bachman’s guitars will go up for bid at Julien’s Auctions in an exclusive presentation called The Randy Bachman Collection, taking place on May 29 and May 30 at the Hard Rock Cafe in New York City.

The event honors the Canadian classic Rock N Roll maverick, and founder of Bachman-Turner Overdrive and The Guess Who. The Music Icons auction event will take place live at Hard Rock Cafe in New York and online at juliensauctions.com.

The auction offers a collection of nearly 200 signature guitars, instruments and gear, owned and used by Bachman. The Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, native burst onto the music scene in 1965 with his band, The Guess Who. From 1969-1970, The Guess Who took the world by storm with a breathtaking streak of hits including “These Eyes,” “Laughing,” “Undun,” and “No Time,” all written and composed by the band’s songwriting duo, Randy Bachman and Burton Cummings.

The collection features Bachman’s 1959 Gibson Les Paul Standard famously known as “The American Woman Guitar,” the axe that gave birth to The Guess Who’s most famous song. Bachman first acquired this guitar in 1968 during a gig in a church basement in Nanaimo, British Columbia when an audience member offered him to play the guitar in place of his current guitar with a cracked neck. During a fateful performance at a Canadian Curling Rink after breaking a string, Bachman stumbled upon the now iconic riff.

Their No. 1 hit “American Woman” catapulted the young Canadian band into superstardom, selling 5 million singles, more records than the entire Canadian recording industry.

Another storied guitar heading to the auction stage is Bachman’s 1955 white Fender Stratocaster used in numerous performances, immortalized in album artwork, and used in the 1975 music video for “Roll on Down the Highway.” It served as Randy’s back-up during his B.T.O. days, recorded rhythm parts of “Hey You” and doubled with Randy’s Hard Tail ’68 Stratocaster for the beginning of “Let it Ride” (estimate: $100,000 – $200,000).

Following his stint in The Guess Who, in 1970, Bachman formed Brave Belt, a country-rock band with singer Fred Turner, which would become Bachman-Turner Overdrive. Bachman’s songwriting prowess and Turner’s powerhouse vocals would produce some of rock and roll’s most iconic anthems, dominating Billboard charts with songs including “Let it Ride,” “Roll on Down the Highway,” “Takin’ Care of Business,” “Hey You,” and the group’s biggest hit, “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet,” which topped the charts in over 20 countries.

For more information go to the Juliens Auctions website.

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