Friday, December 7, 2012

Paul McCartney's Handwritten Lyrics To "Lovely Rita" Offered At $175,000

by Stephen J. Gertz

Paul McCartney's handwritten, working manuscript for the song Lovely Rita, from the Beatles' preeminent and triumphant album, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Heart's Club Band (1967), has come into the marketplace. The first rough draft, ten lines in ink on a sheet of lined paper from a steno pad, it is being offered by Biblioctopus of Beverly Hills for $175,000.

Within, McCartney rewrites the line,  "writing all the numbers in her little black book," to read,  "filling in a ticket with her little blue pen." In the final version as recorded the line reads, "filling in a ticket in her little white book." At the top is a note, "chorus."

Accompanying the manuscript is an unncorrected first state proof of the Sgt. Pepper album cover, varying from the released version with McCartney kneeling, the band instruments placed differently, and with two people amongst the cast of onlookers who refused to sign releases and were dropped from the final, published album cover.

Authentic Beatles manuscript material from Sgt. Pepper hold the records for rock n' roll memorabilia at auction. In 1994, a manuscript draft of Getting Better sold at Butterfield's for $249,200. In 2010, the manuscript lyrics to A Day in the Life sold at Sotheby's for $1,202,500.

At $175,000 Lovely Rita seems a lovely bargain.

This piece was last seen at Butterfield's on December 12, 1993.

Of Related Interest:

Extraordinary John Lennon Letter To Eric Clapton: Join My New Band!.

Yoko Ono Collects Rare Books: The Booktryst Interview.


  1. It looks more like "Chorus" to me, which makes sense because that is the chorus.

  2. Me, too, now that you've mentioned it. Corrected, with thanks.


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