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Sony Executive's Estate Sale Draws Old Friends, Music Nerds 

click to enlarge Sony Music executive Andrew Piretti poses for a photo alongside Michael Jackson.

Harry Davis

Sony Music executive Andrew Piretti poses for a photo alongside Michael Jackson.

Piece by piece they went: the French armchair, the Italian drawings of St. Peter and St. Paul, the Barbra Streisand memorabilia. For four days, 1125 Grove Ave. served as art gallery, used-CD store and knickknack shop while fans, friends and curiosity-seekers rummaged through the estate of former record company executive Andrew Piretti.

Steady Sounds co-owner Drew Snyder walked out with a Pink Floyd tour jacket. Massage therapist Andrew Hoilman fed his "weird fascination" with ancient Egypt by buying a framed print priced at $125. Harry Davis, who co-owns the company that managed the sale, shipped two signed Michael Jackson items to a buyer in Paris.

Piretti, who died in October, was a longtime senior vice president at Sony Music. The sale of his belongings late last month drew 8,000 views online, with 1,500 people visiting the house. Davis declines to provide a final sales total.

Three pieces by artist Mark Klein fetched calls from as far away as Saudi Arabia, but no one walking through the house seemed willing to spend more than $60,000 on them. Davis says he found a home for all three "after several days of intense negotiating."

But Davis seemed inclined to cut deals, reducing the price on a leather belt with a buckle bearing the name of the rock band Chicago from $15 to $10. Customer Jon Spencer eyed the belt while his wife, Courtney, looked around. Courtney says she loves estate sales; Jon says he thinks they're creepy: "Strangers clogging up your house post-mortem," he says.

"But you get great deals," she says.

Yeah, he concedes, and "the leather on the belt is rad."

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