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Search launched for Paul McCartney’s missing Höfner bass guitar

ABC/Heidi Gutman

Paul McCartney’s original Höfner bass guitar has been missing for years, but now some folks are trying to change that. 


The Lost Bass Project is a global search to find the instrument, which has been described as “the most important bass in history.” The two-time Rock & Roll hall of Famer purchased the bass in Hamburg, Germany, in 1961, but eight years later, it disappeared, reportedly after being put away following the filming of 1969’s Get Back.

Nick Wass, who has written articles about the missing instrument, has teamed with two BBC News journalists, Scott and Naomi Jones, to try and track down the bass, which McCartney used on such classic Beatles classics as “Love Me Do” and “She Loves You.” Wass tells the BBC, “For most people, they will remember it… it’s the bass that made the Beatles.”

While Beatles guitars have sold for big bucks at auction, The Lost Bass Project isn’t searching for it for financial gain, even though they realize if someone finds it, they may try to make money off it.

“It would be nice if it could go on public display one day – and if the only way someone is going to come forward is to make some money from it, then so be it, because at least it would be found,” Scott Jones says. “But ultimately we’re just doing this to get Paul his guitar back. We know via Nick and Höfner that it’s what he’s always wanted.” 

Since launching, The Lost Project has gotten hundreds of tips regarding the missing bass. As for how to identify it, it will have the Höfner logo written vertically on the headstock. It also had the pearl pick guard removed and the two pickups mounted in a single piece of black wood.

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