Taylor Swift, Bradley Cooper guitars to be auctioned for Nashville COVID-19 relief

An employee of Christie's auction house holds a guitar used by singer Taylor Swift in New York
FILE PHOTO: An employee of Christie's auction house holds a guitar used by singer Taylor Swift that will go up for sale as part of their Nashville Country auction in the Manhattan borough of New York City, New York, U.S., October 14, 2020. REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

October 15, 2020

(Reuters) – Taylor Swift, Bradley Cooper and Keith Urban have donated guitars to a celebrity country music auction to raise funds for everyday workers in the industry whose livelihoods have been devastated by the coronavirus pandemic.

Swift’s signed black Gibson acoustic guitar that she played for the live debut performance of her new song “betty” in September, comes along with nine of the singer’s custom picks in a lot that could fetch $25,000 to $40,000, Christie’s auction house said on Thursday.

The electric guitar Cooper played as washed-up country singer Jackson Maine in his 2018 film “A Star is Born” is also up for sale, with an estimate of $2,000 to $4,000.

The auction, starting on Thursday and running until Oct 29, will benefit the Academy of Country Music’s Lifting Lives COVID-19 Response Fund, which was created to support people behind the scenes in the country music industry centered around Nashville.

“When the pandemic hit in the spring, Nashville was hit pretty hard,” said Nancy Valentino from Christie’s business development department.

“This is one of the instances where you have the artists helping the people who work with them – tour bus drivers, roadies, session workers, caterers – no one is working,” she added.

Other auction items include a bedazzled dulcimer owned by Dolly Parton for 30 years ($50,000 to $100,000), Sheryl Crow’s vintage Baldoni accordion ( $8,000 to $12,000), and guitars owned by Keith Urban, Dwight Yoakam, Blake Shelton and Vince Gill.

In addition to the instruments, Tim McGraw is auctioning his F131 Hellcat motorcycle, while Carrie Underwood donated the gown she wore to the Academy of Country Music awards show in Nashville in September.

“We were so impressed by how quickly artists volunteered to donate, and donated things that are so special to them,” Valentino said.

(Reporting by Jill Serjeant and Andrew Hofstetter; Editing by Bill Berkrot)