Fans and fans of famous people – actors, musicians, athletes – dream of two things. Firstly, they want to meet their idol in person, and secondly, to get his autograph. The heroes of the Antiques Roadshow, popular in the UK, were two sisters who had autographed items from The Beatles band members for several decades.
The Beatles are a legendary rock band that began its existence in Liverpool in 1960. This group included John Lennon, Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney, George Harrison. In 1963-1970, the Beatles recorded and released 13 studio albums, 211 songs to their credit. According to statistics, in 2001, more than 163,000,000 of their discs were sold out in America alone, and the total number of discs and cassettes sold related to the Beatles at that time was over 1,000,000,000 copies.
So, the women said that the photos and documents signed by the Liverpool four were presented to them by their father. In his youth, he was a stuntman, and he often met many famous people. He probably met with the managers of the Beatles, and thanks to this meeting he received a whole collection of papers and photographs with autographs of the band members.
It was with this gift from the father that the sisters came to the Antiques Roadshow, dedicated to art objects. Imagine their amazement when the show’s host John Foster expressed his opinion about their collection. As it turned out, what women kept for decades was fake. The sisters showed John Foster only a few items signed by the Liverpool Four, but that was enough for an instant analysis.
Here was the appraiser’s explanation: “Look, the signature options on these three items are different. The thing is that when The Beatles became popular, they didn’t have time to leave their autographs. Very often, their managers signed up instead of the band members.” Foster paid special attention to the photo with the image of the group, where there were signatures of all its members.
It was there, as the auctioneer said, that the deception literally “caught the eye.” Foster explained: “The autographs in this photo are fake, because they have too rigid, angular outlines. Ringo Starr signed quite classically, but here the signature style is more solid.” And yet the women did not have to throw away family heirlooms, and in general, as it turned out, they were upset about their collection in vain.
After all, on other items from the collection donated by my father, the signatures turned out to be smoother. This is especially true for signatures on a small piece of paper – these are, as Foster said, authentic autographs of the Liverpool four! These autographs were left by the members of the Beatles at the time when they starred in the musical film “Help!” – there they performed the main roles. And although fakes were found in the sisters’ collection, auctioneer John Foster estimated it at 5,000 pounds (which is more than 500,000 rubles).
If all the documents turned out to have authentic autographs, then the sisters could count on a much larger sum, but otherwise it’s not bad. It happens like this in life: you can get autographs from ordinary musicians, and after a few years or decades these musicians become world-famous stars, that’s when it becomes not so easy to get their autograph, it’s hard to imagine how many people keep fake Beatles signatures, believing in their authenticity.