Actor Richard Gere Sells Guitar Collection to Support Humanitarian Causes

October 11, 2011 - 10:40 PM
Richard Gere Guitar Auction

A 1960 Gibson Les Paul Special, formerly owned by reggae musician Peter Tosh, from the guitar collection of actor Richard Gere is displayed at Christie's, Thursday, Oct. 6, 2011 in New York. The collection includes over 100 vintage American guitars and amplifiers and will be auctioned on Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2011. (AP Photo/Jason DeCrow)

NEW YORK (AP) — A collection of American vintage guitars owned by actor Richard Gere has fetched nearly $1 million at auction in New York City.

Tuesday's sale of 110 guitars and amplifiers at Christie's auction house included brands such as C.F. Martin, Gibson, Fender and Gretsch and guitars once owned by blues guitarist Albert King and reggae musician Peter Tosh.

The top sale went to a 1960 solid-body Les Paul electric guitar by Gibson, which sold for more than $98,000.

Gere says he's parting with the instruments to support global humanitarian causes. Christie's says the "Pretty Woman" star studied trumpet and is a self-taught pianist and guitarist.

Gere says he never planned to assemble a guitar collection and bought only ones that he liked and that sounded good to him.

The collection was expected to sell for about $1 million.