Prince’s Cloud 3 guitar fetches over $900,000 at auction after selling for just $8,000 in 2005

Prince’s Cloud 3 guitar fetches over $900,000 at auction after selling for just $8,000 in 2005

Prince‘s Cloud 3 electric guitar has set a new record for the most expensive Prince guitar ever sold at auction.
Originally estimated to fetch between $400,000 and $600,000, the Cloud 3 eventually sold for an eye-watering $910,000 at Julien’s Music Icons sale in New York last week.

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Built in the early 80s by Minneapolis luthier Dave Rusan, the Cloud 3 is what Julien’s calls “a time capsule from what many consider to be Prince’s most recognisable era”, having been used by the late legend on most of his tours including Purple Rain, Parade, Diamonds and Pearls, Sign of the Times, Lovesexy, and Nude.
The guitar was previously sold in 2005 by Christie’s for just £4,200 (~ $8,114), with the recent sale marking a more than 100-time jump in price. The reason for this, says Julien’s, can be chalked up to the company’s authenticity verification process, which involved CT Scans taken at Westside Medical Imaging in New York City.

Equipped with a 25” scale length and a three-piece neck-through-body construction, Cloud 3 began life as an O’Hagan Nightwatch guitar. The instrument’s body was cut down and maple wings were attached and re-shaped to create the signature Cloud shape, based on a bass guitar acquired by Prince in the late 1970s.
Other features include 22 frets on a painted fretboard with dry transfer “Love Symbol” position markers, a mix of brass and gold-plated hardware, EMG pickups, Schaller 457 wraparound bridge, West German Schaller tuners, and a brass nut.
Like all other Prince-used Cloud models, the 3 was originally painted white by guitar and amp guru Mark Sampson. It was later stripped and repainted in peach by Barry Haugen, before appearing in its final Lemon Yellow Shimrin form today.
Apart from the Cloud 3, Julien’s recent Music Icons event also witnessed the sale of John Lennon’s long-lost Help! Framus 12-string Hootenanny acoustic guitar. The iconic instrument fetched an astounding $2,857,000, setting a new record as the most expensive Beatles guitar ever sold at auction.

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