Neal Schon Is Selling More Than 100 Historic Guitars From His Collection
By Andrew Magnotta @AndrewMagnotta
July 6, 2021
Journey guitarist and founder Neal Schon has announced plans to sell more than 100 guitars from his personal collection in an auction later this month.
In a press release, Schon announced that he will offer up 112 guitars from his personal collection via Heritage Auction in a sale starting on July 31.
Among the highlights are guitars used to write and record Journey classics, as well as instruments Schon has played onstage in some of the band's biggest live moments.
"These are guitars I've been collecting for a very long time," Schon said in the release. "And it's time to let go of some of my collection to make room for new arrivals."
The guitar that will likely command the highest bid is the 1977 Gibson Les Paul Schon used on Journey's most immortal hit, "Don't Stop Believin'." Two more are mythical 1959 Les Pauls that would command thousands without ties to Schon.
Also in the lot is the 1974 Guild F-50R acoustic guitar Schon used to write "Wheel in the Sky" and "Patiently" with Steve Perry.
"It was my room warm-up guitar, many years before Steve Perry came into the band," Schon said of the acoustic. "I had an endorsement with Guild at the time, and they made me that F-50. It holds that history, and it's on a lot of famous songs."
Some of the guitars being sold tie back to Schon's pre-Journey days, including a 1969 Gibson Les Paul gold top that was his go-to during his tenure with Santana.
Schon has been collecting guitars since his teens. He says he owns more than 800. The 112 included in the auction are all guitars he's spent time with and enjoyed through the years. Now it's time to let those instruments move on, he says.
"I don't feel good about having them all in cases, these guitars [that] I'm never going to really play on albums or live or anything," he added. "They're not meant to sit there and look beautiful. Somebody should be utilizing them, and I should allow somebody to, because there are not that many of them around. And, quite frankly, I'm happy with what I'm playing."
Journey just released its first new song in a decade, "The Way We Used To Be." The band is set to get back onstage later this month with a pair of shows in Chicago. Journey's 2021 touring plans also include a stop at the iHeartRadio Music Festival this September in Las Vegas.
Schon's guitar sale follows David Gilmour's record-breaking auction from 2019, in which the Pink Floyd guitarist sold 127 instruments from his personal collection and raised more than $21 million for charity.