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David Bowie’s handwritten lyric sheet expected to fetch £100k at auction | Ents & Arts News

A handwritten lyric sheet penned by David Bowie for two of his “cult favourite” songs could fetch up to £100,000 when it goes under the hammer next week.

The double-sided lyric sheet includes the late music icon’s drafts, notes and corrections from when he created Rock N Roll Suicide and Suffragette City – which both featured on his 1972 classic, The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars.

The page dates to the final recording sessions of the album and was given to the original owner by the Life On Mars hitmaker at Trident Studio in Soho, central London, along with pages which have not survived.

It will be accompanied by a letter of provenance from the seller, stating that the page was created during the album’s final recording sessions.

The side of the sheet showing the Suffragette City lyrics includes a note at the bottom left to inform the publisher of two more songs Bowie was considering for the album – It Ain’t Easy and Round And Round.

It Ain’t Easy made it on to the 1972 album, while Round And Round, a cover of Chuck Berry’s Around And Around, was selected as a B-side for the UK issue of Drive In-Saturday, released a year later in 1973.

The double-sided lined paper features the lyrics to Rock N Roll Suicide and Suffragette City
Image:
The double-sided lined paper features the lyrics to Rock N Roll Suicide and Suffragette City

The lyric sheet is expected to fetch up to £100,000 at auction
Image:
The lyric sheet is expected to fetch up to £100,000 at auction

The lyric sheet was purchased by the current owner in the early 1980s and went on loan in 2013 to the V&A Museum for its highly-anticipated David Bowie exhibition – which became its fastest-ever selling event.

It travelled across the globe when the exhibition departed London and journeyed to Toronto, Sao Paolo, Chicago, Paris, Melbourne, Bologna, Tokyo, Barcelona and New York during a five-year international tour.

Stellar showcase of music memorabilia on sale

Bowie, who died from liver cancer on 10 January 2016 aged 69, was crowned Britain’s most influential artist of the past 50 years for his ability to transcend music, film and fashion.

His lyric sheet will be among a stellar showcase of musical memorabilia on sale on Tuesday via Omega Auctions – which previously sold a handwritten lyric sheet for Starman, one of his most famous songs, for more than £200,000.

David Bowie performing on stage at Wembley Stadium during Live Aid in 1985 Pic: AP
Image:
David Bowie performing on stage at Wembley Stadium during Live Aid in 1985. Pic: AP

Other lots include a book previously owned by Oasis guitarist, Noel Gallagher, featuring lyrics for fan favourites including Champagne Supernova, She’s Electric, Rockin’ Chair, Step Out Tonight and Going Nowhere, which is expected to fetch between £30,000 and £50,000.

Read more:
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Gallagher hailed Bowie as “one of the all-time greats”, telling Sky News how the visionary singer inspired him to step out of his comfort zone and “put himself out there”.

A sheet containing The Doors frontman Jim Morrison’s handwritten lyrical musings is also up for auction with an estimated price of £10,000 to £50,000.

Handwritten and signed lyrics by Queen drummer Roger Taylor for the band’s song, Breakthru, are expected to fetch up to £10,000, while a pair of trousers owned and worn by late frontman Freddie Mercury could net £6,000.

The auction also includes signed photographs, posters, albums and setlists by a variety of well-known artists.

Bowie accepted the lifetime achievement award at the 11th Annual Webby Awards in New York in 2007 Pic: AP
Image:
Bowie in 2007. Pic: AP

Bowie’s lyric sheet has been described as “an incredible artefact” by auction manager, Dan Muscatelli-Hampson.

“There are two real cult favourites in the wonderful David Bowie oeuvre and Suffragette City has been described as one of his very best,” he said.

“It is an incredible artefact to have and to hold and it is sure to excite the many millions of Bowie fans around the world, just as the Starman lyrics did.

“We are excited to see what it might achieve on the day.”

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Birmingham: Three men found guilty of £100k murder plot on orders of Dubai-based drug dealer | UK News

Three men are facing jail after being found guilty of plotting to kill a man who owed money to a drug dealer.

Connor Palmer, Craig Miller and Elijah Stokes were all convicted after they were found guilty of arranging a hitman to kill the man in Birmingham.

In May 2020, the partner of the man the men arranged to have killed opened the door to find another man in a Tesco jacket and hi-vis vest.

He asked the woman if she was “expecting a delivery”, before adding “he’s here, isn’t he?” and walking into the house and shooting at the victim.

He was shot five times and taken to hospital, but survived. A child in the house was unhurt.

Palmer, Miller and Stokes, as well as one other, formed a group that was paid £100,000 by the drug dealer, who is now based in Dubai, to kill the man, Birmingham Crown Court was told.

They used £40,000 of the cash to pay the hitman, while Stokes arranged for a car and gun to be delivered to him.

Weeks later, the drug dealer ordered another hit through Miller, sending a photo with the caption “that’s him”, to which Miller replied: “Clips going in his head.”

The attack never took place.

The messages were discovered on EncroChat, an encrypted service used exclusively by criminals, according to the police.

However, the encryption was hacked by international police, meaning messages could be read by investigators.

Read more on EnchroChat:
What is EncroChat?

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Stokes, 38, of Earlsdon, and Palmer, 40, from Surrey, were found guilty of conspiracy to murder, while Miller, 37, from Epsom, was found guilty of two counts of the same charge.

The gunman has never been identified.

Sentencing will take place at a later date.

Detective Inspector Gemma Currie said: “The messages we uncovered as part of this investigation make for truly chilling reading and are like something from a movie.

“It was a miracle that the victim of the shooting in Sheldon survived. It was thanks to the EncroChat breakthrough that we were unable to unravel this conspiracy to murder.

“The gang thought that they were able to communicate securely about their murderous plans, but thanks to the international law enforcement community, we were able to show exactly what they were planning and how they planned it.”