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Grateful Dead T-shirt sells for astronomical amount at auction

Grateful Dead fans are known for their unparalleled devotion to the band.

Yet, even some of the most die-hard Deadheads might have a hard time wrapping their minds around the idea of paying nearly $20,000 for a concert T-shirt.

But not one collector, who is believed to have set the record for the most money ever paid for a vintage T-shirt when he laid down $19,315.80 for an original Grateful Dead shirt from 1967.

And here we thought the $40 we spent on that Tiffany concert T-shirt was excessive!

The yellow Grateful Dead shirt — which you can see by clicking here — was expected to go for $6,000-$8,000 during a recent online auction held by Sotheby’s that included some 228 Grateful Dead items, according to reports. Instead, the shirt went for $17,640 — which was the actual bid — plus administrative fees, which brought the final price to $19,315.80.

The shirt was from the collection of Dan Healy, the audio engineer known for his work with the Grateful Dead and the band’s legendary “Wall of Sound” concert PA sound system.

It is “an official t-shirt from 1967, around the time of the Dead’s earliest major performances,” according to the information on Soethby’s website.

It was designed by graphic artist Allan “Gut” Terk, who was an key figure in the Bay Area’s 1960s counterculture movement as well as a member of both the Hell’s Angels and Ken Kesey’s famed Merry Pranksters squad.

“Friends with Ken Kesey, he was the painter of the Pranksters’ ‘Further’ (sic) bus in 1964 and designed the Acid Test Graduation posters. By 1967, through his work for the Dead, he was acclaimed in the Bay Area music scene for his t-shirt and poster art,” according to the Sotheby’s auction item page.

The shirt was reportedly bought by Bo Bushnell, according to the vintage T-shirt resource website Defunkd, which broke the story on Oct. 14. Bushnell runs the motorcycle culture-related Instagram page Outlaw Archive and recently posted about the winning bid.

“We just did this to keep the memory of #GutTerk alive and to keep his history together under one roof,” the post read.

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