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Pete’s Gear: 1920s Martin 00-42 acoustic guitar

2006: Performing A Man In A Purple Dress on In the Attic.

2006: Performing A Man In A Purple Dress on In the Attic.

Pete Townshend acquired a small-bodied Martin acoustic, possibly as early as 1979 or 1980, and used it on 1989’s Iron Man and subsequent recordings. He purchased this guitar from Frank Lucido, California Guitar in Los Angeles. Frank Lucido:

Pete tells me he wrote a “lot of hits” with it.

(Pete also purchased one of his vintage 1952 Fender Telecasters and a 1964 Gibson Everly Brothers acoustic from California Guitar.)

The guitar has since been used on 1993’s Psychoderelict, and 2006’s Endless Wire, featured on A Man In A Purple Dress and Tea & Theatre.

The Martin 00-42 features an Adirondack spruce top and single-bound Brazilian rosewood body, 14 1/8″ (w) x 4 1/8″ (d) x 19 5/8″ (l), bound neck with 12/20 frets with ebony fingerboard. The Martin 42 styles, first introduced in 1858, with the 00-42 model first introduced in 1898, are renowned for their incredible, sophisticated sound and workmanship.

Pete with Martin, ca. 2010

Martin 00-42 in Pete’s studio, ca. 2010. Photo courtesy Kenny F.

Resources and Information

  • Frank Lucido, owner of California Guitar in Santa Barbara, Calif., and Studio City, Calif., 1978–1985
  • Vintage Guitar info: Martin Style 42 info