Dude, Deadheads grateful for auction

May 10, 2007 at 7:51 AM
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SAN FRANCISCO, May 9 (UPI) -- While some may consider it buying junk, fans of the Grateful Dead viewed a San Francisco auction as a chance to bid on a piece of the great Jerry Garcia.

The auction Tuesday started off with high bids that only went higher, the San Francisco Chronicle said Wednesday. Empty speaker boxes that held speakers for the Dead's Wall of Sound concert loudspeaker system sold for between $900 and $1,680. Garcia's suitcase of spare guitar strings went for $16,800.

The best Dead stuff -- two of Garcia's electric guitars -- brought in $312,000 and $186,000.

The lots sold Tuesday for $1.1 million were from the estate of Lawrence "Ram Rod" Shurtliff, the band's road manager who died last year. The items included leftover wine from Garcia's dressing room, with the catalog notation that "some of the wine has gone bad, and concert posters and a tie-dyed speaker cover, with imperfections also noted.

Garcia has been a magnet for memorabilia auctions since his death in 1995. During one Garcia auction in 2005, a Nevada casino paid $2,500 for one of the his toilets.

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