Blues Legend B.B. King’s Iconic Guitar Is Up For Auction, Starting At A Staggering $80K

NEW YORK - APRIL 18:  Blues Legend B.B. King performs his 10,000th concert at B.B. KIng Blues Club & Grill in Times Square on April 18, 2006 in New York City. King is a nine time Grammy Award winning musician who started his career in 1947.  (Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)

Blues Legend B.B. King’s Iconic Guitar Is Up For Auction, Starting At A Staggering $80K

The story behind its name will blow your mind.

Published July 24, 2019

Written by Danielle Ransom

The blues legend’s most prized guitar was named “Lucielle” and now it is up for auction. The guitar is being sold off by King’s estate alongside some rather unique, once-in-a-lifetime memorabilia, including a National Medal of Arts from former president George H.W. Bush, which has been estimated to be worth up to $30,000, and an 18-karat gold pocket watch with his name engraved that was gifted to the fifteen-time Grammy Award winner by UK rock band U2.

The antique guitar, which is valued between $80,000 and $100,000 is a one-of-a-kind prototype that was gifted to King to earmark his 80th birthday, and its backstory is just as eye-popping as its price target. 

Legend has it that the King of Blues first coined the moniker after he narrowly escaped with his life from a burning building. King was performing when a brawl popped off and ended with the building catching on fire, forcing everyone to evacuate. Noticing he had left his beloved guitar behind, the blues icon ran back to rescue it and named it Lucille after he discovered that two men started the fight over a woman by the same name. 

“He named his guitar ⁠— and each one of his trademark Gibson guitars in the decades to come ⁠— after her to remind himself to never fight over a woman or run into a burning building,” the auction house wrote on their website. 

The auction is being held by Julien’s Auctions’ and will take place on September 21. 

(Photo by Astrid Stawiarz/Getty Images)

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