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The 1931 Rickenbacker 'Frying Pan'

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'Born To Rocks' opens
02 Feb 07 - A major exhibition celebrating the electric guitar has finally come to London.

'Born To Rock' opened today in London's Harrods store. It houses Europe's largest collection of guitars, including the world's first, the famed 1931 'Frying Pan'.

The exhibition is heralded as a multi-media experience, showcasing guitars and artists who have helped shape contemporary rock and pop culture.

The 'Frying Pan', described as the "Mona Lisa" of the musical instrument world, left the United States for the first time when the exhibition began in Dublin last month.

The priceless Rickenbacker 'Frying Pan', the world's first commercially successful electric guitar was built in 1931 by a U.S. guitarist who wanted to be heard above the din of his Vaudeville band, and named for its resemblance to the cooking utensil.

Harrods said it had mounted the tightest security operation since the Blue Empress diamond went on display at the store in November 2003. The department store has employed 24-hour security to guard the exhibition round the clock.

The exhibition runs until 3 March.

Jacqueline Springer

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