A 1954 Gibson Les Paul that Peter Frampton played during his Humble Pie and solo days has been found after investigation by two Frampton fans, according to Gibson.com. The guitar had been presumed lost in a 1980 cargo plane crash.
The Curaçao Tourist Board acquired the guitar, and experts from Gibson Guitar confirmed it was, indeed, the missing guitar, long missing from Frampton’s collection.
Frampton was given the guitar in 1970 by a man named Mark Mariana at a Humble Pie gig at the Fillmore West. Frampton borrowed Mariana’s guitar for the show and afterward tried to buy it from him. “But to my surprise he said he couldn’t sell it to me, he wanted to give it to me!” he said.
Frampton played the guitar exclusively on Humble Pie’s Rock On and Rocking the Fillmore albums and his own seminal Frampton Comes Alive!, one of the top-selling live records of all time.
Frampton was recently reunited with the guitar in Nashville, Tennessee.
“I am still in a state of shock, first off, that the guitar even exists, let alone that it has been returned to me. I know I have my guitar back, but I will never forget the lives that were lost in this crash. I am so thankful for the efforts of those who made this possible … and, now that it is back I am going insure it for 2 million dollars and it’s never going out of my sight again! It was always my No. 1 guitar and it will be reinstated there as soon as possible. Some minor repairs are needed. And, I just can’t wait to get Mark Mariana on the phone.”