Auction of Norwich-based Thin Lizzy rock star’s items fetches �47,000

Bidders found the silver lining in their pockets to spend �47,000 on 420 items belonging to a former Atomic Rooster and Thin Lizzy guitarist who lived in Norfolk.

Rock music fans packed into TW Gaze auctions in Diss on Friday for the chance to get their hands on memorabilia belonging to musician John Du Cann, who recorded a version of the song 'Hi Ho Silver Lining' with London band The Attack a few days before the more popular version by rock guitarist Jeff Beck.

Arguably the most impressive sale of the night was a 1963 Fender Stratocaster, which had a starting price of between �3,000 and �5,000, but ended up fetching �6,500.

However, a number of lots exceeded their starting price including a rare vinyl edition of Led Zeppelin's self-titled first album, which had turquoise lettering.

This had been expected to fetch between �300 and �400, but sold for �500.

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Other lots included guitar amps and records from Du Cann's own collection spanning a range of genres from the 50s, 60s and 70s including prog rock.

James Bassam, sales organiser at TW Gaze, said: 'I have never seen the auction room so full, it was packed to the rafters. It is not everyday that you get a collection from a rock star who may not be well-known but was certainly an important person in the 60s and 70s, as well as in the prog rock movement.'

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The Leicester-born musician, who died in September aged 65, moved to Norfolk in 1983 and lived initially in Fakenham before moving to the Muspole Street area of Norwich, where he ran a greenhouse and conservatory company.

During his musical career, he started playing guitar for Wiltshire-based The Sonics and London's The Attack before joining the psychedelic, progressive hard rock band Andromeda.

After leaving Andromeda, he joined progressive rock band Atomic Rooster, providing re-recorded guitar parts for the albums Death Walks Behind You and In Hearing of Atomic Rooster.

In 1977, Du Cann teamed up with Status Quo guitarist Francis Rossi to release the album The World's Not Big Enough and in September 1979 had a number 33 hit in the UK singles chart with Don't Be a Dummy, which was recorded by Gary Numan and used in a Lee Cooper jeans TV advertisement in 1978.

He was also a temporary guitarist for Thin Lizzy, appearing on the band's German tour after Gary Moore left the band and played guitar for Hard Stuff.

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