No sale for Jackson hat on TradeMe

KERRY MCBRIDE
METRO AND CAPITAL DAY REPORTER
Last updated 15:55 15/08/2012
'I TRULY NEED THIS REST': Michael Jackson, who died in 2009 after asking his doctor to give him a powerful anesthetic to help him sleep, struggled with insomnia for several years.
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PIECE OF HISTORY: Jamie Olsen says his caught Michael Jackson's hat when he threw it from the stage during his HIStory world tour concert in Auckland in 1996.

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How much would you pay for the King of Pop's hat? Apparently not $52,000.

Carterton man Jamie Olsen listed a TradeMe auction for what he says is a hat straight from the head of Michael Jackson, with a reserve price of $52,000.

While one bidder did take a punt at the starting price of $45,000, it was not enough to own the piece of pop memorabilia.

Mr Olsen said his brother Danny Gay caught the hat when Jackson threw it from the stage during his HIStory world tour concert in Auckland in 1996.

The moment was captured in a video clip of the concert, which is now on YouTube.

The hat was passed on to Mr Olsen when Mr Gay died of cancer four years ago, leaving behind daughters Jade, 12, and Jasmine, 11.

With the hat languishing in the back of his closet, Mr Olsen decided last month that he would try his hand at selling it on TradeMe to raise some funds for Jade and Jasmine's future.

"It would be a good start for their lives if I could put some good money away for them through selling it."

He tried to sell the hat once before - prior to Michael Jackson's death - and it attracted two bids of around the $40,000 mark, but Mr Olsen felt it was worth more.

"So I just sort of held on to it, but it's just been sitting in a box in the wardrobe. It's not any use to me in there."

The auction attracted a number of questions on why Mr Olsen wasn't selling through an auction house such as Christie's or Sotheby's if he felt it was worth so much.

He had now contacted Christie's in the United States to investigate selling the hat through a memorabilia auction.

However the next challenge would be getting the hat certified as a genuine piece worn by Michael Jackson.

"I've had people asking if I can prove it's actually his hat, which I can't in a way because I've only got the video clip of my brother catching it."

Mr Olsen was confident that if he could get it certified and listed in the United States, a collector would stump up big funds to own it.

"Over there people go crazy over MJ. If you get someone that has got a lot of money, well then the amount I'm asking isn't really a hell of a lot."

Contact Kerry McBride
Metro and Capital Day reporter
Email: kerry.mcbride@dompost.co.nz
Twitter: @kerry_mcbride

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- The Dominion Post

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