Gibson guitars have teamed up with the family of Tom Petty to create the SJ-200 Wildflower acoustic guitar. The new six-string is handmade by the expert luthiers and artisans of Gibson Acoustic Custom Shop in Bozeman, Montana.
The Tom Petty SJ-200 Wildflower is inspired by the guitar Gibson made for Tom while he was entering a prolific period of songwriting, recording, and performing around the release of his Wildflowers album.
Petty’s daughter, Adria Petty said in a statement announcing the new signature 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.
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.
Back in 2017 during his MusicCares honor, Tom Petty shed light on the musical melting pot he and the Heartbreakers have always swam in: [“We were very influenced by the Rolling Stones. Very influenced by the Byrds — of course the Beatles, y’know, coming of age in the ’60s, everyone was influenced by the Beatles (and) Bob Dylan. And then there’s more obscure things, like the blues people of the Chess label, y’know, like Muddy Waters, Howlin’ Wolf. Lots of blues crept in, but we learned it all second hand, y’know, just being suburban kids. We learned about Chuck Berry from the Rolling Stones and sort of learned it all backwards.”] SOUNDCUE (:33 OC: . . . it all backwards)
SOURCE: Press release
- Gibson guitars have teamed up with the family of Tom Petty to create the SJ-200 Wildflower acoustic guitar.
FAST FACTS – via Gibson.com
- Rare and collectible, this first run of the Tom Petty SJ-200 Wildflower acoustic guitar features the detailed SJ-200 ornamentation and beauty expected from Gibson acoustics, it is equipped with a AAA Sitka spruce top, a stunning and highly figured quilted maple back and sides and the neck is flamed maple.
- With gold Grover Imperial Tuners, as well as an LR Baggs VTC under-saddle pick up with soundhole-mounted volume and tone controls, this SJ-200 is stage-ready, right out of its custom Wildflower case.
- Personalized artist touches include the Wildflower logo in Mother-of-Pearl on the headstock, the “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.
- An acoustic masterpiece, only 100 of these SJ-200 Wildflower guitars will be available.
- Set for release on April 16th from the Tom Petty estate is Finding Wildflowers (Alternate Versions).
- The collection, culled from the recent deluxe box set of Petty’s 1994 solo Wildflowers album.
The tracklisting to Finding Wildflowers (Alternate Versions) is:
“A Higher Place”
“Hard On Me”
“Cabin Down Below”
“Crawling Back To You”
“Only A Broken Heart”
“Drivin’ Down To Georgia”
“You Wreck Me”
“It’s Good To Be King”
“House In The Woods”
“Girl On LSD”
“Cabin Down Below” (Acoustic Version)
“Don’t Fade On Me”
“Wake Up Time”
“You Saw Me Comin'”