An extremely rare Vox UL730 amp, used by Beatles guitarist, George Harrison during the recording sessions for two of the bands classic albums, ‘Revolver’ and ‘Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Heart’s Club Band,’ will be put up for auction on December 15 at Bonhams in London, England.
After decades of remaining unaccounted for, the Vox, was only connected with Harrison in February of this year, when Joy Division/New Order bassist Peter Hook was lent the amp for a recording session. When Hook found the amp to be faulty, he sent it into to a specialist, who subsequently discovered the name ‘George Harrison’ etched into the chassis and speaker cabinet.
Since then, further research has been undertaken into confirming that the Vox is the real deal, and it seems it is. A photograph featuring Harrison and The Beatles in the studio with a UL730, with visible chalk markings, similar to those seen in the cabinet, has been recovered and will appear at the auction.
A member of The Merseybeats who used to write the ‘Beatles Gear’ pages for the monthly Beatles Book magazine, and who attended many Abbey Road Beatles’ sessions as a guest, has also identified this as Harrison’s UL730.
Bonhams Entertainment Memorabilia consultant, Stephan Maycock has issued the following statement, “Very few amps used by the Beatles have come to auction before, and to find one that was used on two such significant albums is truly rare and exciting…Beatles fans all over the world will be eager to own such an important piece of music history.”
The UL700 series – early hybrid models with transistor pre-amps and valve power amps – were released in in the UK in 1966, as a replacement of the flagship AC30s. However, after failing to sell, the series was pulled from the market in 1967.
There are now thought to be as few as 26 UL730s in existence, so when you combine that with the fact that the one going up for auction on Dec 15, was once owned by one of the most famous rockstars in history, there is little wonder why it is expected to fetch at least £50,000, or around $78,100 USD.