Thursday, September 28, 2023


This news is just in from the UK Telegraph newspaper.

The Telegraph

ByAnita Singh, ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR27 September 2023 • 7:00am

Sir Paul McCartney’s missing bass guitar was stolen from a van, sound engineer reveals

While The Beatles star may not recall the theft, Ian Horne says he remembers it clearly and has ‘carried the guilt all my life’

Two replicas of Sir Paul's bass, including (left) the state it was in when he bought it in 1961 and (right) how it looked following a respray in 1964 CREDIT: Guncotton Guitars/PA Wire

Sir Paul McCartney’s missing bass guitar was stolen from a van in Notting Hill, investigators have learned as they move closer to solving a mystery spanning more than 50 years.

A global search was launched earlier this month by Hofner, makers of the 500/1 electric bass, after Sir Paul told the company that he dreamed of being reunited with it.

He bought the instrument for £30 in a shop in Hamburg in 1961, and played it throughout his time in The Beatles. It was previously thought that the last sighting of the bass was at the band’s Apple Corps headquarters shortly before their famous rooftop concert in January 1969.

When Hofner launched a public appeal for information via The Telegraph, they received 600 emails within the first 40 hours.

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One stood out: it was written by Ian Horne, a sound engineer with Wings. He was able to inform investigators of the instrument’s last known whereabouts - three years later than the band’s final live performance.

Mr. Horne reported that the bass was stolen some time after 10pm on Oct 10 1972 from the Ladbroke Grove area of Notting Hill, west London.

He said: “In 1972, Paul McCartney was preparing for his first UK and European tours with Wings, and the band was recording their second album, Red Rose Speedway.

“We had rented a truck to move the gear - guitars and amplifiers - to various recording studios and rehearsal spaces across London. 

“We were often criss-crossing London to rehearse or record at Morgan Studios in Willesden Green, the ICA in The Mall, Manticore Studios in Fulham, Island Studios in Notting Hill, and Abbey Road in St John’s Wood.


“One night, after a long day, we got to Notting Hill, where Trevor lived, and decided to park the truck up there for the night.

“We knew there was a huge padlock on the back doors, but when I got up in the morning and saw the van, with the broken padlock lying in the road, I knew it was bad news.

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“I looked inside and the bass, along with one other guitar and two Vox AC30 amps, had gone.”

Mr Horne added: “We instantly suspected people living in and around Ladbroke Grove were responsible. One or two people living close by knew that we worked for Paul, so they would have known there was a chance that the kit in the back of the truck belonged to McCartney.

“We went from door to door, asking people if they’d seen anything or if they knew anything, but nobody said a word.”

Mr Horne reported the theft at Notting Hill Police station at noon that day.

You’re gonna carry that weight

While Sir Paul may not recall the theft, Mr Horne remembers it as if it was yesterday.

He said: “I knew it was Paul’s original Hofner bass that had been stolen, and I knew what it meant to him. Trevor and I did all we could to find it, but it was gone. Eventually we had to go to Paul’s house and tell him that the gear had been stolen from the back of the truck.

“He told us not to worry, and we kept our jobs. He’s a good man, Paul. I worked for him for six years after the bass went missing. But I’ve carried the guilt all my life.”

Mr Horne went on to work with Ian Dury and Madness for more than 30 years.

The search team includes Nick Wass, a Hófner executive and bass expert, and investigators Scott and Naomi Jones. 

Mr Wass said: “When we saw Ian Horne’s message, we knew we had made our first major breakthrough. It simply said, ‘I was working with Wings, I was his sound engineer, when the bass was stolen from a hired truck.’

“To hear from someone like Ian, who was there at the time, and who still cares deeply to this day about getting the bass back, we were blessed at a very early stage in the investigation.”

Naomi Jones, who is leading the archive research, said: “Using Ian’s evidence, coupled with other pieces of information that we have gathered, we are now focusing on two families living in the Ladbroke Grove area in 1972 who we believe are connected to the lost bass in some way.

“We are now honing in on what happened to that bass after the theft.”

Mr Wass added: “The search for the lost bass was inspired by Paul McCartney himself. When I met Paul a few years ago, he spoke about the bass and asked me to help him find it.

“So the developments we’ve seen in the last few weeks - with all the publicity, and so much information coming into the project - has been incredibly exciting.


Tuesday, November 8, 2022

"Mysteries in the Music" Now an Audiobook !


Rock And Roll Detective® Proudly Announces:
"Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed"
now available as an Audiobook.

Book cover artist Zina, shows off the award-winning, bestseller, Mysteries in the Music: Case Closednow available as an Audiobook, wherever you subscribe to audiobooks!

The narrator for the new audiobook, is Matt Hurwitz, a professional voice-over artist and entertainment journalist in Los Angeles. Hurwitz gives voice to each of the musicians involved in these intriguing mysteries. You will actually hear the voices of The Traveling Wilburys, and the many artists in the book..

Audiobooks are the perfect entertainment for long drives, airplane flights, the beach, and for the sight impaired. The Audiobook is FREE with an AUDIBLE trial or you can purchase it individually without subscribing. 

Over 45 Audiobook companies are featuring the book on their websites, including:

Apple Books 
Barnes and Noble
Google Play

If your Audiobook subscription is with a company not listed above, just search for Berkenstadt or the book title at your company and you will find it!

Berkenstadt's newest non-fiction music book, has spent 10 straight months on the Amazon Bestseller list. It is available at AmazonGenius Books, and Signed Copies are available from the author (while supplies last). 


The Rock And Roll Detective's contribution of a recording archive to the University of Wisconsin, Mills Music Library, containing recordings of The Beatles, solo-Beatles, related groups, bootlegs, and TV/Radio broadcasts, is now available to students, teachers and visitors worldwide for study and enjoyment. 

Jim Berkenstadt has teamed up with veteran TV producer Paul Barrosse (VH1 Behind The Music) to create a docu-series based upon Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed. They are currently pitching the TV series in Los Angeles. Stay tuned for updates.

Book Cover Art by Zina Check out the Artist Zina and her beautiful artwork at this link! Her latest creation is a portrait of David Bowie! 
About Rock And Roll Detective®
Rock And Roll Detective® LLC, and was founded by Jim Berkenstadt in 1991. The company is dedicated to providing consulting, production, publishing, writing, research, social media, and content creation for the music, television, and film industry. The URL is

Tuesday, October 11, 2022

"Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed" Now Available as a Kindle eBook !

Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed, the award-winning, bestseller, is now available as an Amazon Kindle eBook. Get your copy now! 

Signed copies of the Paperback are also available direct from the author here.

The book has remained on the Bestseller list for 9 straight months. Currently, the book is at No. 5 on the Amazon Bestseller list. Get your copy now!

Tuesday, September 13, 2022

Rock And Roll Detective Proudly Announces the Reader's Favorite Award for Non-Fiction Entertainment Goes to... Jim Berkenstadt

I am very honored to announce that “Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed,” has won another award. The Reader’s Favorite Award, in the category of Non-Fiction, Music Entertainment. Thanks to Genius Books, Zina (cover art) and Gary Schumacher (copy editor). Get your copies at Amazon: and, I have a few signed copies available at the book site.

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Rock And Roll Detective® Proudly Announces the NonFiction Gold Medal for Best Pop Culture Book in 2022 goes to... Jim Berkenstadt

Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed (Genius Books, 2022) by bestselling author Jim Berkenstadt (aka the Rock And Roll Detective®) has been selected as the 2022 Gold Medal Award Winner in Pop Culture for Nonfiction by the Nonfiction Authors Association.

Gold Medal Winner

Heather Hirschman of Readers’ Favorite Book Reviews writes, “Jim Berkenstadt's thoroughly researched book, Mysteries in the Music, explores rumors and conspiracy theories around some of music’s greatest unanswered questions. In it, he investigates every conceivable avenue open to him, documents historical interviews, and conducts his own with those still alive to answer questions. As an experienced attorney, he makes no assumptions; instead, he sets out to trace and prove facts. The reader is left with no doubt of the veracity of the conclusions he reaches.

Jim Berkenstadt literally ‘Closes Cases.’ He also does it all in a captivating and very often humorous manner. He is clearly passionate about music and this shines through his writing. He has been around for a while, so he is lucky enough to have met many of the people mentioned between these pages. I loved this book and would recommend it to anyone interested in modern music.” 5 STARS *****

Berkenstadt's newest non-fiction music book, has spent 6 straight months on the Amazon Bestseller list. It is available at Amazon, Genius Books, and Signed Copies are available from the author (while supplies last). 

Berkenstadt will be the Featured Speaker and "Get Back"  Panelist, Signing his new award-winning bestseller at: The Fest For Beatles Fans Chicago 2022
August 12-14, 2022 at Hyatt Regency O’Hare, 9300 W. Bryn Mawr Ave., Rosemont, IL. 60018

Tuesday, April 19, 2022



SIGNED BY THE AUTHOR! - "Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed" now available! Supply is limited. Get your copy now.

We are proud to announce that Jim Berkenstadt's newest non-fiction music book, which debuted at No. 1 on the Bestseller list at Amazon, is NOW AVAILABLE PERSONALLY SIGNED FROM THE AUTHOR

Mysteries in the Music: Case Closed, examines the secrets, myths, legends, hoaxes, conspiracies, and the wildly inexplicable events that are such an intriguing part of rock and roll history. After many decades, the back stories of pop, blues, and rock music lore are finally unearthed—and the truth is revealed in Mysteries in Music: Case Closed.

Hurry, before supplies run out or Banksy shreds them. :-)