I know this was a previous thread but I can't find it!
I am intrigued by this photo. Someone may have posted it already, apologies if so.
It clearly shows Stuart with his Hofner bass but also Paul with his Hofner. My understanding is that Paul used Stuart's bass for a bit before he got his own. So is this photo when Stuart made the odd appearance with them in Hamburg after he left? The photo doesn't suggest that it would be a later date though given what they are wearing and haircuts. Can anyone enlighten me please?
Top Ten Club is the location. It seems that Stu sometimes popped back to rejoin the group even after Paul had taken the plunge and bought the Hofner. Perhaps it was to allow Paul to play piano for some songs
Stu bought his Hofner bass at Hessy's in Liverpool on Jan.20th,1960. I could never find a pic of Paul playing Stu's Hofner 500/05, but read Paul hated it. Was too heavy and Stu wouldn't let Paul turn the strings around when using it. Also around this time (Apr.-June'61) they got into a little scuffle, among other things that were building up between the two, and had to be broken up. So very slim chance of Paul using it after that. This is when Paul decided to get his own Hofner bass 500/01 leftie. (This is the Hofner that was stolen while filming 'Let It Be'). Stu sold his Hofner bass later to his friend Klaus Voormann and it is now owned by the Hard Rock Café in London. If you're ever in town you can see it hanging in a case on the wall.
You can see what terrible shape it is in. Missing one of the pickups.
You can see what terrible shape it is in. Missing one of the pickups.
I wonder if it was in that condition, or, was it damaged at the Cafe? Dave Gilmour loaned his Black Strat to the HRC and when he asked for it back it was in terrible condition, and needed extensive repair.
Dave's strat they just had hanging on the wall and customers could touch it! Then people just walked over and took the knobs and stuff off of it. This may have happened to Stu's, then they put it in a glass case and now you can see it's way up high near the speakers in the store!
I was in the HRC near Piccadilly many years ago, and hated it. It was crowded and the food was, basically expensive fast-food. I only went because my mate insisted, I think he expected to see Arnold in there! Noticed some memorabilia, but the place was too crowded to browse it.
Last Edit: Feb 17, 2017 18:35:00 GMT by brewmaster
Just to keep this discussion going, one of the reasons Paul ended up being nominated for the bassist job, was that his own guitar, a Rosetti Solid 7: had disintegrated under the relentless pressure of the St Pauli nights, and he hadn't bothered to replace it.
He would have been aware of the Hofner 500/1. Many times Paul has spoken of how influential the film The Girl can't help it was, and there is a Violin Bass backing Little Richard. Also, the bass player in the Jets, backing Tony Sheridan at the Top Ten Club, had a Hofner 500/1
This is what McCartney and others remembered about the purchase:
.'Eventually I found a nice little shop in the centre of Hamburg, near a big department store...I saw this bass in the window, this violin-shaped bass, the Hofner...So I bought it, and I think it was only about £30'.
It was on the second floor of the Steinway shop in the centre of Hamburg that McCartney found the solution to his problem: a German-made Hofner 500/1 bass...Günter Höper was one of six salesmen at Steinway at the time. 'Paul McCartney bought his Hofner bass from me...As usual in those days, he bought it in instalments. We offered a ten-payment deal, and so we had to set up a contract, for which we needed his passport number. However, Paul had left his passport at the Top Ten club, so I went with him to the club to get the passport and do the deal'. Höper says the price of the bass was 287 Deutschmarks [about £25 at the time]..." Steinway ordered a left-handed model for Paul and the rest is history.
I have read that Paul has stated that he was attracted to the Hofner because it is symmetrical, so he could play a RH model upside down without it looking too awkward. He probably did not know that they had a LH model!
It's amazing how much discussion Paul's Hofner promotes. Surely this is the most talked about Beatle instrument? Second must be George's 'Rocky' and third possibly John's Gibson Jumbo acoustic.
Actually, even as a left hander, when I first saw The Beatles live on Ed Sullivan Show, it was John Lennon's Rickenbacker that got my attention! I was in haw of it! I never seen anything like it before in my life! I thought it was the koolest damn instrument I ever saw!!
It was the Violin bass that first grabbed my attention when I saw the lads in Merseybeat. However, that Ric did look good too, none of us knew what it was. George's Gretsch was more familiar, even Bert Weedon played one!
Last Edit: Feb 18, 2017 14:45:02 GMT by brewmaster
When I was reading about Paul's Hofner was the first time I came across the little fight Paul & Stu had. Paul knew he needed a guitar and Stu owned him some money he loan him. Thinking he would just hit up Stu for the money and then put it towards the Hofner he asked Stu for it, but it's probably the way he asked that the fight ensued. Using Astrid as bait he told Stu just get it from your girlfriends family they're loaded! In which little Stu picked Paul up and threw him on the piano. The boys broke them up before anymore damage would have occurred. Later on after cool heads prevailed Paul got his money and the Hofner was his. (Tune-In p.445)
Thought I'd put this one up too about George's Hofner that was used as a prize at the Star Club in Hamburg.
"Hofner Club 40 model 244 (vintage unknown):
"A little Hofner that looked like a solid guitar but was actually hollow inside, with no soundholes," as Harrison described it. He got it in a trade with Ray Ennis of the Swinging Blue Jeans, and has said that he later traded in the Club 40 for "something," but a rare photo shows him with it even after he'd bought his next two guitars. It differs from Lennon's Club 40 in that its control panel is round instead of rectangular, and the headstock logo is horizontal rather than vertical. A sentimental Harrison acquired one very much like it during his solo career. But what of the original?"
"In December 1965 some Star Club officials and others from Hamburg attended a Beatles show at the Hammersmith Odeon and reportedly came away with the Club 40, signed by all four Beatles. What this old guitar was doing at a sold-out Christmas show years later is anybody's guess. Not long after, in early '66, the guitar was awarded to the winners of the Star Club "best band" contest: The Faces. A band member, Frank Dostal, still has it stowed away in a German bank vault, but autograph experts contend the signatures are not genuine, more likely signed by Neil Aspinall. Even if true, still a valuable guitar."
I was just thinking some of those guys, Ray Ennis as an example, probably could have made more money just going around saving old Beatle stuff back then, since they were around the guys a lot, than they ever made doing anything else in their careers.
Here's Ray with his red 335. His original was stolen. (George got that Hofner in a trade with him probably in 1959.)