Shop Claims "Most Expensive Guitar" Sale with '58 Gibson Explorer

London-based guitar shop and Reverb seller Denmark Street Guitars has announced the sale of an original 1958 Gibson Explorer for the sum of $1,100,000.

According to a press release issued by the store, this amount is believed to be the highest priced transaction ever for a single, non-artist-affiliated guitar.

"I have been aware of a set of matching korina guitars for the last 10 plus years owned by a leading collector based in the US whom I have known since I was 16" said Justin Harrison of Denmark Street Guitars.

"He always mentioned that he had the guitar but wanted $1 million plus [for it]. In speaking to the buyer and discussing his desire to own some classics guitars, I discussed that I was aware of a '58 Explorer that was the holy grail of vintage instruments. After 4 to 5 days of going back and forth, I finalised the sale of this at 1.1 million."

The Explorer was brokered privately and was not transacted on Reverb's site. Denmark Street Guitars arranged the sale between the two private parties but did not possess the instrument during the selling process.

This guitar is one of 19 Explorers produced by Gibson in 1958, with a body built from korina and pair of original PAF humbucker pickups. The Explorer was initially designed as a high concept model in 1957, with fewer than 50 known examples shipped from Gibson in 1958 and 1959.

Other guitars were built using the parts from this era in later years, but few exist with as complete a pedigree as this instrument.

Original korina Explorers and Flying Vs come to market very infrequently. This sale sets a new bar for prices on late '50s Gibsons. Other korina Explorer owners include Kirk Hammett of Metallica and Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick.

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