Biggie’s Crown Sells For Over $500K At Sotheby’s 1st Hip Hop Auction

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Sotheby’s held its first Hip Hop auction on Tuesday (September 15) and fielded numerous offers for 120 pieces of memorabilia.

From original Beastie Boys’ Licensed To Ill Tour posters and vintage Hip Hop flyers designed by Buddy Esquire and Van Silk to Salt-N-Pepa “Push It” jackets and Slick Rick’s multicolored diamond eye patch, the auction was a Hip Hop heaven for any collector.

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Most notably, the crown The Notorious B.I.G. wore for his iconic “King of New York” photoshoot for Rap Pages in 1997 sold for over $500,000.

Sotheby’s tweeted a photo of the item and Biggie wearing the crown with the caption, “#AuctionUpdate Following a bidding battle, one of the most iconic symbols of Hip Hop’s heyday: the crown worn and signed by Notorious B.I.G. from #BarronClaiborne’s iconic 1997 ‘King of New York’ photoshoot for Rap Pages Magazine soared to $594.8k.”

The auction, which was available to watch on the Sotheby’s website, also netted over $126,000 for the Rammellzee vs. K-Rob “Beat Bop” 12” vinyl with Jean-Michel Basquiat artwork. As far as Tupac Shakur’s love letters, those sold for $75,600.

As explained in the description, the collection was “an incredibly sweet and at times steamy archive of love letters, chronicling the approximately 2 month-long romance between 16 year old Tupac Shakur and Kathy Low, a fellow student at the Baltimore School for the Arts, while Tupac was enrolled in the 10th grade theatre class (along with close friend Jada Pinkett), and Kathy in the 11th grade theatre class. The letters span from their first meeting, to their eventual break-up, and include a letter of regret sent a year later.”

Biggie’s Crown & Teenage 2Pac’s ‘Sweet, Poetic’ Love Letters Up For Auction

Other 2Pac items included an autographed letter and Chi Modu portraits of the late Hip Hop legend, which sold for over $17,000 and up to $6,000, respectively.

Additional notable items are one of Dr. Dre’s World Class Wreckin’ Cru outfits ($32,760), J.J. Fad’s custom jackets (up to $6,930), a total run of The Source magazine ($32,760) and Drake’s unreleased Air Jordan IV Retro Prototypes ($32,760).

Check out video of the Biggie crown segment below and check out all 120 lots here.

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