David Bowie's handwritten lyrics for The Jean Genie sell for £57k at auction

7 February 2023, 23:21 | Updated: 7 February 2023, 23:24

A lyric sheet for The Jean Genie handwritten by David Bowie has been sold for £57,000 at auction.
A lyric sheet for The Jean Genie handwritten by David Bowie has been sold for £57,000 at auction. Picture: Alamy / Getty

By Chris Samuel

David Bowie's handwritten lyrics for his 1972 hit The Jean Genie have been sold for £57,000 at auction.

The song, which appears on his Aladdin Sane album, was released as a single in 1972, reaching number 2 in the UK charts.

Omega Auctions' Dan Hampson said the owner had decided to sell the piece of rock history after seeing the singer's lyrics for another of his hits, Starman, sell for £203,500 in 2022.

The lyric sheet for The Jean Genie features 18 lines written on a piece of A4 lined paper, titled, signed and dated by the chameleonic musician.

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Bowie originally gave it to fan Neal Peters after he founded the David Bowie Fan Club in 1973.

The lyric sheet for The Jean Genie features 18 lines written on a piece of A4 lined paper, titled, signed and dated by the chameleonic musician.
The lyric sheet for The Jean Genie features 18 lines written on a piece of A4 lined paper, titled, signed and dated by the chameleonic musician. Picture: Omega Auctions

Also included in the auction lot was a 2009 letter on Neal Peters Collection stationery, detailing how Bowie gave Mr Peters the lyric sheet, as well as several photocopied documents relating to the New York-based fan club and Mr Peters.

David Bowie, dressed as his Ziggy Stardust character, performs live on stage at Earl's Court Arena, London, on the opening night of the Aladdin Sane UK Tour on 12th May 1973.
David Bowie, dressed as his Ziggy Stardust character, performs live on stage at Earl's Court Arena, London, on the opening night of the Aladdin Sane UK Tour on 12th May 1973. Picture: Getty

Prior to the sale, the lyrics had been estimated to sell for between £50,000 and £70,000, with Omega Auctions auction manager Dan Hampson saying: “The vendor has been in possession of this incredible set for a few years and decided to sell after seeing the amazing price achieved when we sold the Starman lyrics last year.”

David Bowie attends the 2010 CFDA Fashion Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 7, 2010 in New York City.
David Bowie attends the 2010 CFDA Fashion Awards at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center on June 7, 2010 in New York City. Picture: Alamy

Bowie, whose hugely successful career spanned five decades, died aged 69 in 2016.

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