Below is an article I put in MACCA-News, Feb/8/98
Sir Paul McCartney spent £45,000 having his trademark Beatles guitar retuned-so it can be insured for £2 million! Macca paid £36 for the Hoffner violin bass in 1961 and still uses it. However it has always been out of tune-the E string is at fault when a G note is played. He likes this quirk, but insurers recently insisted that it had to be correctly tuned before they would issue the £2 million cover certificate.
So Sir Paul, 55, instructed his personal assistant John Hammel to take it to rare instrument specialists Mandolin Brothers in New York-on a specially chartered jet. Hiring the plane cost £45,000-a fortune to most rock stars but barely a handful of notes to multi-millionaire Macca. An insider tells me: "Money was no object. Paul values this guitar with his life, it's almost like a lucky charm to him. "It is probably one of the world's most recognised and most valuable instruments."
The Hoffner was taken to Mandolin Brothers, who usually handle ultra-rare Stradivarius violins, in a purpose-built Samsonite case-which I am told a tank would find hard to flatten. A condition of the policy is that Sir Paul always uses the case now. Until recently he had been using the battered original holder!
He bought the left-handed Violin Bass 500-1 for £36, a huge sum for a guitar in 1961, before The Beatles' first hit. He used it at all their gigs and studio sessions. To add to the guitar's value, his old set list from The Beatles' last concert, staged at Candlestick Park, San Francisco, in August 1966, is still taped to the back of it!