|The Jerry Lee Lewis '59 Panhead, a gift from the factory|
"Rock n’ Roll legend Jerry Lee Lewis has an outsize reputation as a larger-than-life character living with scant regard for public opinion. Regardless of debauched tales and extreme behavior, this electrifying showman not only climbs onto pianos, but also motorcycles…which should come as no surprise at all. In the 1950s, he seemed the most‘at risk’ performer of all, pioneering a new musical style with an aggressive, almost wild stage presence, as well as the original “sex, drugs, n’ rock n roll” lifestyle…yet he remains alive today, still performing on occasion, and still with a clutch of Harley-Davidsons in his stable.
|The Panhead on delivery in 1959 from Ralph Murray of Harley Davidson Sales in Birmingham, Alabama|
|Jerry Lee with his third (of 7!) wife (and cousin, Myra Gale Brown, aged 13) in 1957, with his first Panhead, also a '57 model|
|Good times, when girl fans tore the clothes off his back...|
In the 'now it can be told' file, Lewis admitted a big reason he was selling the Panhead was to prevent a family feud after he dies, with many heirs clutching at whatever fortune he's retained after half a century. He still has one bike, a Sportster, which he's revved up on stage in the past, and now sits in his Florida restaurant.
Here's a video of the auction sale:
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