The same way great swordsmen named their swords in the days of old, great guitarists name their favorite, most beloved pieces of sound equipment. Many wonder, though, which guitars stand above the rest–which are the most legendary.
Here are a few of the most legendary guitars to ever shape the course of music history.
Way back in 1969, country music star Willie Nelson sent one of his tired guitars to a Nashville repair shop. However, the owner couldn’t fix it, but he did have a nice Martin guitar amongst his musical instruments for sale. Willie Nelson bought the guitar sight unseen for $750 over the phone. Once he got it delivered, he instantly fell in love with it and named it after Roy Rodger’s beloved horse, “Trigger.” Over the years, Nelson played the guitar so much that he actually wore a hole in the top. He loved the unique, musical quality it had, which no other piece of sound equipment would’ve been able to produce. So he left it there instead of fixing it.
Musical legend Eric Clapton decided to check out a little Nashville music shop with his sister back in 1970, where he wound up buying six old Fender Stratocasters for $100 a piece. He wound up giving one to Peter Townshend, one to Steve Winwood, and one to George Harrison. The other three pieces of sound equipment he disassembled in an attempt to build a “Super Strat.” The experiment yielded his famous “Blackie,” which he played for years after.
Rock god Eddie Van Halen loved the tone of Gibson’s sound equipment, but he also wanted the aesthetics of Fender’s guitars. So, he created what came to be known as the Frankenstrat. Though there are several official and unofficial duplicates available in many online music stores, none will ever be able to replicate the maestro’s craftsmanship. Why? Because he added extraneous pieces of sound equipment–a dud pickup and a three way switch–just to throw off copycats.
These are just three of the most legendary guitars of all time, but who knows what the future might bring. There’s still a lot of room in the annals of musical history. Perhaps you’ll someday stumble across some piece of sound equipment in one of the myriad online guitar shops and play it so prolifically that listeners will have to acknowledge it as one of the most epic guitars ever. Maybe. To learn more, read this.