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"While My Guitar Gently Weeps" Played on the Oldest Martin Guitar

As reported by the gang over at Guitar Player, a Martin guitar from the 1870s was smashed to bits by Kurt Russell on the set of Quentin Tarantino’s 2015 Western, The Hateful Eight.

Well, here's a Martin that's considerably older than that.

It was built in 1834, making it the oldest Martin in existence. That's only one year after cabinet maker C.F. Martin moved to New York City from Germany. Martin immediately began making guitars, a lot like the small Stauffer-style instrument in the video below.

In the clip, guitarist Stevie Coyle plays the Beatles' “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” and an original tune called “Saltflat Rhapsody.”

Maybe the 1834 Martin is weeping for its 1870s cousin. Maybe not. Regardless, check out the video below; note how the ancient guitar sounds a bit like a much older lute.

P.S.: Please keep Kurt Russell away from this guitar!

Damian Fanelli

Damian is editor-in-chief of Guitar World magazine. From 1998 to 2014, he was one third of Mister Neutron, an instrumental rock act that toured the universe and elsewhere and released three albums via Austin-based Deep Eddy Records. These days he performs with several New York City-area bands and can often be spotted with one of his many, many, many B-bender-equipped guitars. In past lives he was GW’s managing editor and online managing editor – and he still can’t believe he got to write the liner notes for the latest SRV box set.