I’m a collectibles and a car guy. I love hunting for good finds. Barn finds, auction finds, pawn shop finds, yard sale finds, whatever… so this had me on the edge of my seat.
I’ll just let Mickey tell you what happened. From Mickey on his Facebook page:
“I have a cool story, a really cool story. Until a certain period I never played steel stringed acoustic guitars, only classical, unless I was using one of Aaron’s on a recording. so Aaron and I are in Rockland, Maine writing “White Pepper” in 1999 and we take a day off to drive to Portland, where we encounter an incredible vintage guitar shop. He had his eye on a $3k Taylor and I wanted a 1969 Martin classical guitar, but it’s rough and very expensive–$3k as well actually.
The tag said “needs a lotta work”. We both buy them with our recording budget. I use mine on Bananas and Blow, She’s your baby, etc and it’s slowly getting unplayable. Turns our it’s super rare, they made 13 that year, one of which is owned by Willie Nelson, a Martin N-20, also known as “Trigger”.
Fast forward to now and Ween has a great relationship with Martin, they are massive fans. When they take my guitar for repair they almost shit—-they’ve never seen another like it—it’s one of a kind—possibly worth a 100 thousand bucks. The tuners are shaped like BUTTERFLIES. It took them many months of work to get it back to me but it just showed up—I think willie and I have probably the only 2 surviving N-20s from the first year of production. bad ass.”
Bad Ass indeed. This is the find of the century. Only 2 surviving N-20s in existance? That’s amazing. Here’s the original tweet from Martin showing a proud Mickey and his guitar. Beautiful work they did in restoring it:
Mickey Melchiondo (aka Dean Ween) of WEEN with his newly repaired 1969 N-20 nylon string. pic.twitter.com/k1QyybfMle
— Martin Guitar (@MartinGuitar) May 5, 2016