Lennon's hair sold for $49,000

WASHINGTON • When Beatlemania hit the world in the 1960s, pop music was not the same again. Neither were hairstyles after young men adopted the British group's trademark mop-top cut in droves.

Now a bidder has bought a piece of the real thing - paying US$35,000 (S$49,093) at auction for a lock of John Lennon's hair, snipped in 1966 in preparation for a film role.

Dallas-based Heritage Auctions sold the 2.54cm, nearly 50-year-old cutting last Saturday.

"This is the largest lock of John Lennon's hair ever offered at auction," Heritage director of music memorabilia Garry Shrum said in a statement.

"This world record price is a lasting testament to the world's more-than-50-year love affair and fascination with Lennon and The Beatles."

British collector Paul Fraser bought the lock, cut in 1966 by a German hairdresser in Hamburg before Lennon began filming How I Won The War. The dark comedy, directed by Richard Lester, follows the misadventures of a fictional British troop under an incompetent commander during World War II.

Lennon played the role of Private Gripweed, for which he first publicly donned the signature round glasses he wore for the rest of his life.

Hairdresser Klaus Baruck kept the lock after trimming the star's hair. "Baruck was so excited about the opportunity to transform Lennon's famous Beatles mop top that he called the local newspaper to record the event," Heritage said in its statement.

A signed "before" shot of Lennon taken shortly before the trim also sold at the auction for US$2,125.

The biggest seller was a rare sealed copy of the band's limited United States album Yesterday And Today, which went for US$125,000.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on February 23, 2016, with the headline 'Lennon's hair sold for $49,000'. Print Edition | Subscribe