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Pete’s Gear: Collings acoustic guitars

Ca. 2005, with the original Collings OM-3.

Ca. 2005, with the original Collings OM-3.

In late 2000, Pete Townshend began using — and continues to use — Collings acoustic guitars in the studio and for solo performances.

The models he appears to use are an OM-3, which he acquired first, purchased possibly in October 2000 in New York (according to Amazing Journey), and a recent OM-3, which he acquired sometime around 2005 or 2006. The latter is fitted with a Fishman Ellipse Matrix Blend pickup system. In 2006 he used one of these guitars on Endless Wire.

He also used an OM-1 on an “In The Attic” webcast in on 19 April 2006, suggesting it was being considered for on-stage use: “We’re going to try and use [it] on stage to get a better sound...the crisper sound will be better for the stage.”

He commemorated the original guitar in the instrumental song “Collings,” which appeared on Scoop 3.

Collings guitars are instruments of exceptional quality, made in Austin, Texas.

Details

The models Pete appears to own (if you have further information about Pete’s Collings models, please get in touch):

  • Original OM-3

    • Adirondack spruce top; Brazilian Rosewood back and sides; one-piece Mahogany neck; bound Ebony fretboard; 25½″ scale; Ebony bridge.
    • Gold-plated Waverly tuners;
    • Appears to have custom diamond or snowflake fretboard inlays.
  • Recent OM-3

    • East Indian rosewood back and sides, spruce top.
    • Ivoroid binding; Ivoroid and black/white nitrate strip purfling custom herringbone purfling, herringbone border;
    • Ivoroid headstock and fretboard binding
    • Ivoroid and wood strip rosette Abalone rosette;
    • Tortoise-style pickguard;
    • Mahogany neck with ebony fingerboard (with no inlays) and bridge;
    • Brazilian rosewood peghead overlay with mother of pearl Collings logo.
    • Waverly tuners.
  • OM-1

    • Mahogany back and sides;
    • Tortoise-style binding;
    • Simple walnut backstrip;
    • Black/white wood nitrate strip rosette;
    • Inlaid dot fingerboard markers.

Selected quotes

All quotes and references are copyright their original owners and are included for reference only.

Pete, from the Scoop 3 liner notes for the song Collings, regarding the Collings guitar:

The guitar is a special, but quite recent, Collings made in Austin, Texas. It actually played this little piece itself I feel.

Photo Gallery

Ca. 2006, performing with the recent Collings OM-3 fitted with Fishman Ellipse Matrix Blend pickup system.

Ca. 2006, performing with the recent Collings OM-3 fitted with Fishman Ellipse Matrix Blend pickup system.

Ca. 2006, closeup of the recent Collings OM-3 fitted with Fishman Ellipse Matrix Blend pickup system.

Ca. 2006, closeup of the recent Collings OM-3 fitted with Fishman Ellipse Matrix Blend pickup system.

Ca. 2005, in the studio, with Collings OM-3.

Ca. 2005, in the studio, with Collings OM-3.

19 April 2006, In The Attic, with new Collings OM-1, left, and recent OM-3.

19 April 2006, on “In The Attic,” with new Collings OM-1, left, and recent OM-3.

Ca. 1980, early use of a blonde J-200 with solid moustache bridge, miming for Let My Love Open The Door video.

Ca. 2010, a blonde J-200, with a solid moustache bridge, with two Collings at right, and a mandolin. Photo courtesy Kenny F.

Resources and Information

Acknowledgements

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