There’s a strange thing about superstardom that makes everyone want a piece of you. Fans watch and cheer for successful music artists, but they also want to take something home. At concerts, merchandise flies off the selling tables – from signed albums to t-shirts listing the tour dates. It’s a form of nostalgia and the music fan gets to own something related to the act.
All this makes us feel closer to our favourite bands and artists, but what about when they’re gone? It depends on how famous you are, but normally it increases the value of your memorabilia. After all, fans will no longer be able to see the act, so those authentic tour t-shirts are effectively priceless.
However, t-shirts, beanies and posters might be quite normal for fans to collect, but now there are many other ways to get a piece of your favourite artists. If you have $10,000 – $15,000 lying around, you can get your hands on a lifetime insurance policy for Elvis Presley. Strange, right?
With the advent of the internet, not only do you have better access to auctions for memorabilia, but also more unusual tributes to artists. Some are created by the artists themselves, such as the weird alternate reality game that Trent Reznor of Nine Inch Nails led fans into.
For music fans who like playing games, there’s a whole sub-genre that you may not have come across yet. Among this selection of online slots, you’ll find a themed games of huge rock bands, showing that music is not just for stadiums.
Legendary rocker Jimi Hendrix is immortalized in game form by developer NetEnt. Players get to listen to the skilled fingerpicking of the incredible guitarist as they play to win.
Hendrix is widely considered one of the finest guitarists the world has ever known. His innovative style made him a rock superstar in the late 1960s. His rock version of “The Star Spangled Banner” at Woodstock in 1969 blew crowds away. He is also known for hits such as “Hey Joe” and “Purple Haze”. Sadly, Hendrix passed away in London, aged just 27, the year after his incredible performance.
The online slot game features symbols associated with the musician, such as a variety of cool guitars, the peace symbol, flowers and records. Other features in the game include the Purple Haze and the Red Guitar Respin, giving players free spins and more opportunities to win.
Another fun slot for rock fans is the Motorhead video game. Frontman Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister was one of metal’s most influential figures and the band released 22 studio albums and 13 live albums in a career that lasted more than 40 years.
Players will find skulls, shamrocks and of course, the ace of spades in the online slot, as well as a blistering soundtrack by the metal band. It’s a good pairing, as Lemmy could often be found playing the fruit machines in any venue the band played.
Plenty of Motörhead memorabilia can be found online, from warhead goblets to belt buckles. Surprisingly, you can also pick up a bottle of Motörhead Shiraz, if you feel like hitting the top notes.
Björk, the Icelandic songstress, created one of the coolest pieces of music memorabilia ever with the release of her album, Biophilia in 2011. The album came in app form and fans discovered that they could change songs while they were playing. They also had to play mini-games in order to access the rest of the album.
Biophilia made history when it became the first app to be incorporated into the Modern Museum of Art in 2014. Most memorabilia might end up in a museum at some point, but how many can call it modern art?
The band with the most expensive memorabilia is undoubtedly The Beatles. Many items have gone to auction and brought in thousands of dollars. John Lennon’s piano was auctioned for $2.05 million and his Gibson J-160E guitar sold for $2.5 million in 2015.
Autographs from Ringo, John, Paul and George can fetch a few thousand dollars apiece, but even the most famous pop band of all time have had some strange memorabilia up for sale. A lock of John Lennon’s hair, along with a signed card from the singer, went for $26,500 at auction.
Proving that the price of memorabilia skyrockets when you’ve passed are items owned by Kurt Cobain. The lead singer of Nirvana died in April 1994 at the age of 27, but his and the band’s influence can be felt to this day.
It’s easy to pick up a knock-off Nirvana sweatshirt now; it seems every second teen has one. Whether they know all the lyrics to “Smells Like Teen Spirit” is unlikely. However, items from Cobain’s life fetch megabucks when they come to auction.
The cardigan that he wore during the MTV Unplugged session in November 1993 went for $334,000. Recently a close friend of his put six strands of his blond hair up for sale so fans can really have a part of him in their life.
There’s plenty of ways to honor your favourite musicians, whether they’re dead or alive. Some don’t have thousands of pounds to splash out on memorabilia, so perhaps it’s better to stick to the slots!