George Harrison’s letter to Stu Sutcliffe
Here’s one of those pieces of memorabilia that seems too good to be true – a December, 1960 letter from George Harrison to Stu Sutcliffe.
George had recently been kicked out of Germany for being underage, while Stu stuck around Hamburg with his new fiancée Astrid Kircherr (the letter was sent to Astrid’s mother Nielsa). George asks Stu how he’s getting along in Hamburg and fills him in on the details of his family back in Liverpool.The second page chronicles George’s desire for an echo device to add to his guitar arsenal. Check out how he writes, “It’s £34, or £6 down and the rest when Frank catches me!” He’s referring to Frank Hessy, the Liverpool music store owner from whom the boys bought much of their gear. Sadly, Stu never married Astrid. He died of a brain hemorrhage just 14 months after receiving this letter. He was only 21 years old.Here’s a partial transcript of the letter:
I hope you are going on o.k. there with Astrid. I arrived o.k. (24 hrs exactly) but spent a packet [[illegible]], taxis, etc.
I went to see you mum & dad the day after I arrived and they were pleased to see me. Your dad doesn’t seem to mind the idea of you being engaged, but your mum seemed a little disappointed in you (that is as far as I could make out). Your new home is fab and your dad was busy adding finishing touches to the paint work. I was shown your room to be, which is about the size of the room you & John occupied at Gambier and your mum has moved in all your paintings – photos – record player – bed, etc. I likek the painting you did of you on the bins, I believe it’s one of your earliest creations!
I want to get an echo at Christmas. £34, or £6 down and the rest when Frank catches me, so if all my other stuff is up to date I will probably be able to get it with no [[illegible]. I believe ‘Gerry’ has one, only ruins it by using it every number.