The Beatles' Help! piano to beat $83,500 at Omega Auctions?

The piano the Beatles used to compose their 1965 hit Help! will be sold through Omega Auctions in Liverpool on March 20, coinciding with the 50th anniversary of the single "Can't Buy Me Love."

The Beatles Help! piano
Richard Lester threatened to remove the piano from the studio if Paul kept playing Yesterday

The piano, a 1907 Bechstein Concert Grand, was housed at Twickenham Studios, where the band were filming and recording their second feature film, Help! It has been consigned by Richard Lester, the director behind the film, as well as the band's first picture, A Hard Day's Night, and Superman.

It is expected to sell for more than £50,000 ($83,361).

Lester explains how, due to legal issues, the band could not use the title "Help" for their film and were struggling to come up with a title song. However, a phonecall from their lawyers explained the addition of an exclamation mark to Help would circumvent the issue.

The band were called in at once to write the title track.

"They started on this immediately at the studio using the Bechstein piano and continued working on it on their car journey home and throughout that evening," recalls Lester.

"The next morning they arrived at the studio with the track ready to show us and promptly played it on the piano a number of times."

Lester also adds that Paul spent some time at the piano fine tuning Yesterday, or as the song was known at the time, Scrambled Eggs. A perfectionist, he practised it so many times that Lester threatened to remove the piano from the studio.

Following the song's release in 1965, McCartney sent Lester a copy of the single with a note saying: "I'm glad you didn't take the piano away - hope you like the "Scrambled Eggs" song now!".

The piano, now over a century old, was situated at Twickenham Studios from the 1930s, and has undoubtedly been played by some of the biggest stars. It was bought by Lester in the late 1960s.

The 1926 art deco Eavestaff piano Paul McCartney used to compose Yesterday in its earliest form sold for $240,000 in 2011.

Also starring in the sale are two jackets worn by the Beatles on the Help! album cover.  

Paul Fraser Collectibles offers some of the finest Beatles memorabilia for sale.

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