“Prince was not a guy who would sit around and polish his guitars or even think that much about them – they were tools”: In 2005, Prince’s Cloud 3 sold for $10,000. Now it’s expected to fetch $600,000 at auction

Left: Prince holding his Cloud 3 guitar on stage; Right: an image of the yellow Cloud 3 guitar
(Image credit: Julien's Auctions)

Prince's iconic Cloud 3 electric guitar has returned to auction after it was last sold almost 20 years ago. The yellow Cloud 3 was one of Prince's centerpiece instruments, after being used on stage at the height of his stardom in the mid-1980s to the early 1990s, including during the Purple Rain, Parade, Sign of the Times, Lovesexy, and Diamonds & Pearls tours.

Christie previously sold Prince's Cloud 3 for £4,200 (around $8,114 at the time) in 2005 and on eBay for less than its original listing of £59,000 (approx $113,983). The main reason for this low price, however, was that it was not yet verified as Prince's original instrument.

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Janelle Borg

Janelle is a staff writer at GuitarWorld.com. After a long stint in classical music, Janelle discovered the joys of playing guitar in dingy venues at the age of 13 and has never looked back. Janelle has written extensively about the intersection of music and technology, and how this is shaping the future of the music industry. She also had the pleasure of interviewing Dream Wife, K.Flay, Yīn Yīn, and Black Honey, among others. When she's not writing, you'll find her creating layers of delicious audio lasagna with her art-rock/psych-punk band ĠENN.