An auction of Les Paul's guitars and his other memorabilia raised nearly $5 million. The sale of the music instruments owned by the godfather of electric guitar additionally pulled in record-setting prices for guitars, according to Julien's Auctions of Beverly Hills.
A 1982 Gibson Les Paul, a rare prototype recording model, was sold for $180,000. Meanwhile, a 1951 Fender No-Caster helped raise $216,000, a 1940s Epiphone Zephyr a.k.a "Klunker #3" fetched $144,000, and a 1927 Gibson L5 sunburst guitar went under the hammer for $87,500.
Other items which were up for sales included a collection of Les Paul research notes ($28,125) and a Les Paul recording console ($106,250). A sign for the Les Paul Iridium Club and a custom license plate were auctioned off at the two-day sale as well.
The auction concluded on Saturday, June 9 on what would have been the late musician's 97th birthday. It benefited the Les Paul Foundation that supports music education, engineering, innovation and medical research.
Les Paul died from complications of pneumonia at the age of 94 in August 2009. He was well known for being a pioneer of recording techniques and inventing one of the world's most widely played guitars, the Gibson Les Paul. Along with his wife Mary Ford, he enjoyed a string of hits in the 1940s and 1950s that included "Mockin' Bird Hill" and "How High the Moon".