NEW YORK - Coming up on the 24th of June, Sotheby’s sale A Rock & Roll History: Presley to Punk is an amazing collection of manuscripts, photographs and objects that illuminate the golden years of rock & roll history. Sotheby’s was keen to choose a new, fun location to host a cocktail reception for the upcoming sale, and we found just the place at the Ace Hotel’s Liberty Hall. Downtown at Liberty Hall, many music aficionados and collectors new and old enjoyed music by celebrity DJ Steven Rojas and delicious food and drinks by April Bloomfield’s British gastropub The Breslin (the chef is also known for NYC hotspots the The Spotted Pig and Salvation Taco). The Breslin, a Michelin star restaurant that the New York Times once called “Hogwarts for hipsters,” provided a signature cocktail called the “Smells Like Teen Spirit” as well as delicious small bites served by the Breslin’s outstanding staff. Crowd favorites were the mini braised beef turnovers, salmon tar-tar, and cheddar beignets.
While socializing and enjoying their cocktails, guests perused highlights from the sale, including the top lot: the original working autograph manuscript lyrics for Bob Dylan’s “Like a Rolling Stone.” Many peered into the brightly lit case to decipher Dylan’s marginal notes and edits to the lyrics of this iconic hit. Also on display was a second set of Dylan lyrics for his famous protest song, “A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall.” Much attention was paid to a guitar Kurt Cobain played and then smashed at a concert at Maxwell’s in Hoboken, NJ in 1989, a local piece of music history. Many guests remarked on a self-portrait done by Joni Mitchell, picturing the songstress with a keyboard done in felt tip marker, as well as a manuscript fragment of the chorus of her seminal tune “Big Yellow Taxi,” both of which were recovered from an artist’s sketchbook that Mitchell used while living in Woodstock, NY in the late 1960s.
Eventually, after viewing some remarkable pieces of rock & roll history, dancing and chatting with friends, many attendees migrated to the bar upstairs in the Breslin to enjoy a nightcap and their famous lamb burger. The exhibition for A Rock and Roll History: Presley to Punk will be open in our York Avenue galleries 20–23 June, with the sale taking place at 10 am on 24 June.