Tom Petty’s Gibson acoustic guitar getting limited releaseAmanda HatfieldPublished: March 23, 2021photo via Gibson
Finding Wildflowers (Alternate Versions), a collection of alternate takes, demos, live recordings, and home demos of unreleased songs from Tom Petty's Wildflowers' era, is coming out in April, and something else from that era is getting a limited release now, too: Petty's acoustic guitar. Gibson announced the Tom Petty SJ-200 Wildflower acoustic guitar, inspired by the original Gibson made for him around 1996. Here's more from them about it:
The original SJ-200 Wildflower was a one-off that was built for Tom during the Wildflowers era in the 1990s. Now Gibson is proud to release the Tom Petty SJ-200 Wildflower, which was inspired by Tom's original. Featuring all of the classic SJ-200 ornamentation you'd expect, it is equipped with a AAA Sitka spruce top, highly figured quilted maple back and sides, and the neck is flamed maple. It has gold Grover® Imperial® tuners, as well as an LR Baggs™ VTC under-saddle pickup with soundhole-mounted volume and tone controls, making it stage-ready, right out of the included custom Wildflower case. Personalized touches including the Wildflower logo in Mother of Pearl on the headstock, "You Belong Among the Wildflowers" lyric decal on the back of the headstock, and Tom Petty's signature engraved on the double pickguard make this a very special guitar. Only 100 will be handcrafted by the expert luthiers and craftspeople of the Gibson Acoustic Custom Shop in Bozeman, Montana.
For a cool $10k, one of those 100 could be yours; they're on sale from Gibson.
"It is so incredible to see the SJ-200 design our Dad worked on so long ago, lovingly brought to fruition with his long-time guitar tech and friend Alan Weidel and the craftsmen and women at Gibson guitars," Tom's daughter, Adria Petty, says. "There has been much effort made to make certain this guitar lives up to Tom’s musical standards and the specs he wanted for a best-in-class instrument. Alan Weidel has put this instrument through its paces as he has with all Tom Petty signature guitar models. Tom played the SJ-200 while writing and recording Wildflowers and to us it is an honor and a privilege to have Gibson launch this instrument to celebrate his musical masterpiece. That way others can make what my Dad called 'the big jangle' a reference to that gorgeous, big, SJ-200 acoustic sound he loved. We hope fans and members of the music community alike enjoy this beautiful instrument as much as we do. It is a beautiful tribute to him."