By Alyssa Pereira

Grateful Dead fans are some of the most die-hard on the planet. It’s a fact corroborated by their rabid ticket-buying for the band’s “Fare Thee Well” tour shows in Chicago and Santa Clara, and driven home even more so by one very determined fan, who smacked down over half a million dollars for a guitar autographed by original band members.

At the band’s July 5 concert in Chicago, a one-of-a-kind commemorative D’Angelico guitar played by Bob Weir at the Dead’s recent Santa Clara show and signed by original members Weir, Mickey Hart, Bill Kreutzmann, Phil Lesh, and guest performers went up for auction at the show’s intermission.

After a bidding process, the grand prize eventually sold — for an incredible $526,000.

The guitar was purchased by Bill Rathburn of Dallas, Texas.


(Photo courtesy of HeadCount)

(Photo courtesy of HeadCount)

Besides the guitar, the HeadCount-organized auction also offered autographed posters, Remo drumheads and other items, which netted a respectable $250,000 — including $15,000 from San Francisco Giants pitcher Jake Peavy, who took home a signed poster.

Overall, the auction brought in over $750,000, which will be split evenly between various Grateful Dead-affiliated charities.



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