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When Dizzy Gillespie’s original bent-bell trumpet went on the auction block,

April 26, 1995

NEW YORK (AP) _ When Dizzy Gillespie’s original bent-bell trumpet went on the auction block, the bidding followed the path pointed by the horn.

The trumpet sold for $63,000 Tuesday at Christie’s. Its bell was bent 45 degrees when a dancer tripped while performing at a birthday party for Gillespie’s wife in the early 1950s. It also has two small dents made by a snake charmer’s king cobra, which lunged at Gillespie during a trip to India.

After the first horn was disfigured, Gillespie continued to use the bent bells and they became his trademark. ``I can hear my mistakes quicker,″ he once said.

Part of the proceeds were being donated to Englewood Hospital and Medical Center in New Jersey, where Gillespie was a patient before he died in 1993.

Two other horns kissed by jazz legends also were auctioned off. Coleman Hawkins’s tenor saxophone brought $19,500, and a soprano sax of Dexter Gordon’s sold for $10,925.

Jimi Hendrix’ leather guitar strap went for $11,500, and a sign John Lennon drew directing reporters to his 1969 ``Bed In for Peace″ with Yoko Ono sold for $18,400. Fender Stratocasters that belonged to guitar legends Stevie Ray Vaughan and Frank Zappa sold for $21,850 and $11,500.

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