A fabulous price for a microphone

Johnny Carson

Dallas – One of the fans of late-night king Johnny Carson offered $50,787 for the old ribbon microphone that used to sat on Carson’s desk until the 1980s. The offer was about twice that expected at auction.

On the label of the 10 pound Shure model SM33 microphone there is a sign: “Johnny’s Mic… Not Ed’s… Not Fred’s…” – a reference to announcer Ed McMahon and producer Fred DeCordova.

The microphone was saved by chance from a trash bin twenty years ago by one of The Tonight Show operators. The Heritage Galleries auctioneer John Petty said that it still worked great.

Carson, who died in January at age 79, was The Tonight Show host from 1962 to 1992, when he retired. He began using the microphone in the late 1960s.

In late summer the auctioneers plan to offer Carson’s desk, completed with a trash bin and a lining of green shag carpet. That should be a good addition to the microphone.

Published in: on April 29, 2005 at 2:43 am  Leave a Comment  

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