Entertainment Music INXS guitarist Kirk Pengilly auctions his rare collection

INXS guitarist Kirk Pengilly auctions his rare collection

Kirk Pengilly
Kirk Pengilly hopes the guitars he is selling are picked up by musicians. Photo: ABC
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A huge collection of rare guitars and other musical equipment belonging to INXS guitarist Kirk Pengilly will go under the hammer on Wednesday night in Sydney.

There are 43 items up for auction and the sale is expected raise about $230,000.

But Pengilly said it is not money that has motivated him to sell the instruments.

“The money side I haven’t really thought about, I’m really just trying to de-clutter. It is that simple,” Pengilly said.

He said he has kept several guitars that he has a deep emotional connection to, but he amassed a huge collection during his years as a working musician that he no longer needs.

Some rare guitars from INXS' Kirk Pengilly's collection
Vintage guitars from INXS’ Kirk Pengilly’s collection are for sale. Photo: ABC

“My hope is they go to really good homes and they get loved and preferably it will be musicians that I would love to buy them, but they need to be played and used for what they were intended,” he said.

The guitar that is expected to fetch the most is a 1964 Candy Apple Red Fender L-Series Stratocaster.

Pengilly said it is his favourite guitar in the collection and it was used it on various recordings starting from the 1990 album X.

Sotheby’s Australia estimates the guitar will fetch between $35,000 – $45,000.

“Strats were my go-to guitar,” he said. “I just loved the sound of them.”

Not all the guitars are desirable by collectors, but some are inarguably part of Australian music history, such as his 1986 Westone Pantera X300.

“This one I used on New Sensation, that is about the only time I think I ever used it, on that one song,” he said.

INXS miniseries
INXS frontman Michael Hutchence and fellow band member Andrew Farriss are being honoured. Photo: AAP

That guitar is expected to fetch between $4000 and $6000.

Pengilly is also selling an Ibanez AE405 that he used in the 1980s, both live and on recordings. It can be seen in the video clip for the song Burn For You.

“It was just an easy one to play live and strike poses with,” he said of the lightweight semi-acoustic guitar.

It is not just guitars that are up for sale. Pengilly is also selling a 1975 Selmer MK-VI baritone saxophone, which is expected to sell for between $8000 and $12,000.

“I did use this on Bitter Tears, the recording, to sort of thicken up the riff in the song,” he said.

“I just decided it was time to move it on. I never walked around the house playing it because it was so damned heavy”.

Sotheby’s Australia guitar specialist Matthew Liveriadis said investing in vintage guitars is becoming increasingly popular.

“Vintage guitars have quite been a solid investment for a number of years,” he said.

“We have seen prices double and triple since the 70s and they are steadily on the rise.”

Mr Liveriadis said it is not yet clear if the value of the instruments will be greater due to the fact they were owned by a prominent Australian musician.

“We are quite fortunate to be offered instruments both as objects which are quite valuable but there is also that double-edged factor that is the ‘Kirk Factor’ if you will.”

INXS sold more than 50 million records and were inducted into the ARIA Hall of Fame in 2001.

Pengilly was a founding member of the band and he played guitar and saxophone.

The band’s lead singer Michael Hutchence died in 1997 and the band continued with a number of other singers before they stopped playing together in 2012.