Noel Gallagher’s guitar damaged on night Oasis split goes up for auction

Auctioneer says destruction of red Gibson guitar at 2009 Paris festival was ‘cult moment’ in music history

A guitar belonging to Noel Gallagher, which was damaged backstage at an Oasis concert on the night they broke up, is due to be sold at auction next month.

Although the guitar was later repaired, the destruction of the red Gibson ES-355 backstage at the Rock en Seine festival in Paris in 2009 was a “cult moment” in music history, according to Jonathan Berg, a co-founder of the Artpèges gallery, which is holding the auction.

The starting price for the guitar, which will go on sale on 17 May, will be €150,000 (£125,000), with the auctioneers predicting it could reach more than €500,000 (£415,000).

The band had been slated to headline Rock en Seine, but it was reported that Gallagher had got into a fight with his brother, Liam, minutes before their scheduled appearance.

At the concert, the crowd were told by Bloc Party, who were due to perform beforehand, that Oasis would not be taking the stage. Many of the crowd thought it was a joke, until screens at either side of the main stage showed the message: “As a result of an altercation within the band, the Oasis gig has been cancelled.”

Noel Gallagher later confirmed the news, saying: “It’s with some sadness and great relief to tell you that I quit Oasis tonight.

“People will write and say what they like but I simply could not go on working with Liam a day longer. Apologies to all the people who bought tickets to the shows in Paris, Konstanz and Milan.”

The fight followed months of speculation that the band may be separating, as the brothers’ public quarrels – which had gone on for years – began to intensify.

Gallagher initially repaired the instrument after the band split, although he “got rid of it in the end, because it reminds him too much of Oasis”, according to Arthur Perault, the gallery’s other co-founder.

Other items being auctioned at Artpèges gallery includes a vinyl signed by Jimi Hendrix and Johnny Hallyday, as well as bondage clothing worn by the band Depeche Mode’s Martin Gore during an 1980s photoshoot.

In an interview with the Sunday Times earlier this year, Liam Gallagher said he had not seen his brother in years, saying: “We split up nearly 13 years ago. It’s ridiculous. We can go on about whose fault it is, but he’s his own man.”

He added: “If he really wanted to get in contact, for my mum’s sake, he could do it, but he obviously doesn’t want to. There are only so many olive branches you can offer.”


Tobi Thomas

The GuardianTramp

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