If you are a fan of rock music you have likely heard the name Jimmy Page, or at least the band he founded and played guitar with in the late 1960’s and 1970’s, Led Zeppelin.
Back then, Page was almost synonymous with his main guitar, a cherry sunburst 1959 Gibson Les Paul. There were really very few of those made, and nowadays, even one that wasn’t owned by a famous rock star is worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, much less one owned by someone with Page's stature.
Now, one of those famous guitars is available for the right price at Spokane's River City Guitars.
Rock celebrity guitars can sell for amazing amounts of money, as witnessed by the Fender Stratocaster owned by Pink Floyd's David Gilmour, which sold at auction this summer for nearly $4 million.
But Page has never really sold any of his guitars or amplifiers to the general public.
“You know, these are tools," said Bobby Kluss of River City Guitars, which specializes in vintage and collectible guitars. "He wasn’t really a collector, like a lot of these icons were, and generally all the guitars he has he keeps, and when things have come up, like an amp or a strap or even a case, he usually buys them back.”
Kluss says dabbling in vintage guitars is a lucrative business. Just last week, he says, his business shipped 10 guitars internationally.
His business connections played a part in getting the guitar once owned by Page.
A Lake Tahoe resident managed to get Kluss a guitar that Page used for a time when he was sitting in with that player’s house band at a Lake Tahoe club. That man had played at the club with Whitesnake singer David Coverdale before, and knew Page was hanging out with him. When Page began to come to the club to play on different nights, he already had a guitar available that he let Page have.
“My friend said [to Page] if I give you a guitar, will you keep coming? And so he gave him a guitar. He said I figured it was well worth the guitar's value to be able to play in a band with Page,” said Kluss.
That guitar is an unusual one for Jimmy Page, because it's a Fender Stratocaster, which is not a guitar made by Gibson, with whom Page is associated. Kluss has documentation proving it is that guitar, including photos of him using it at the Tahoe gigs, and specific evidence that ties it to the guitar in those pics.
The guitar eventually made its way back to the Tahoe resident, after being kept for a period by one of Page’s bodyguards.
Because Page’s gear rarely comes up for sale, Kluss says this is an unusual piece, and his asking price is in the $20,000 range. He says he is in the process of checking with Page for other documentation that could raise the price exponentially.