Johnny Cash and Martin Acoustic Guitars.
A man like Johnny Cash left a big impression on us all with his body of work, and the attitudes he expressed within it all. There is little wonder that he'd gravitated to the best of guitar manufacturers during his career, and little wonder that C.F. Martin & Co. also gravitated towards him too. As it all played out, we have more than one absolutely stunning signature series guitar with the name and style of the late Johnny Cash all over it for collectors, and artists to use to create and to enjoy as the works of art the instruments are in and of themselves too.
Johnny Cash had been known to play Martin D-18's, Martin D-28's, and other instruments as well. In remembrance of the fabled Man In Black, C.F.Martin & Co. created some great instruments, and this article will be discussing the Martin D-42JC, a Johnny Cash signature series instrument.
The Martin D-42JC
The Basics Of A Martin D-42 Standard.
The Martin D-42JC
Before I can elaborate on the specifications of this fine Johnny Cash signature instrument, I must first tell you just what a Martin D-42 is in its normal form.
So what is a Martin D-42?
The Martin D-42 is a dreadnought acoustic guitar made of a solid rosewood body and a solid spruce top, it is based on the platform of the more common and available Martin D-28, but the Martin D-42 is dressed up a lot more, it is a fancier guitar, almost as dressed up and fancy as the top of the standard production line, the Martin D-45. Simply put, the Martin D-42 allows a consumer to purchase a Martin guitar similar to the D-28, but dressed up with a lot more abalone inlay for two thousand dollars less than the standard top of the line dreadnought, the Martin D-45.
Martin D-42 guitars are built to the Martin classic specifications with a high X bracing pattern, a mahogany dove tail neck joint, and everything one would have with a Martin HD-28 guitar, but with more abalone inlay. Its really that simple. The Martin D-28JC, however, is a very rare guitar, and was featured on the Johnny Cash American Recordings album.
With the Martin D-423, you basically have abalone inlay all over the place, the entire binding of the top of the instrument is abalone inlay, the rosette is entirely abalone inlay, and even on the ebony bridge there is abalone inlay interpolating each side of the thing, not to mention the abalone inlay fretboard markers on the fingerboard, and the Johnny Cash signature, again, in abalone inlay, on the twentieth fret. Its fancy, its everywhere, its expensive, and its beautiful.
The Martin D-42JC is a very rare guitar, and I've never seen one myself. You would be, in fact, one of the few to have seen one if you happened to have. I had to check several times to make certain there weren't some mistakes here, but the very odd thing is that this guitar, the Martin D-42JC, has a three piece back just like a Martin D-35 always does. I assure you that Martin D-42 standard production guitars do NOT have a three piece back, and were the sight I'm pulling my information from not Elderly Instruments, one of the most respected high end acoustic guitar dealers in the entire world, I'd be absolutely certain that someone didn't know what they were talking about here, and was trying to play off a fineMartin D-35 Johnny Cash signature guitar as if it were a D-42JC.
Besides the unheard of three piece back on a D-42, this guitar also features star shaped abalone inlay on the fretboard as the fingerboard position markers, and of course, Johnny Cash's signature in abalone inlay on the twentieth fret. Needless to say, the guitar is also done all in black, just as the fabled man in black would certainly have it.
Again, you'll probably never see one of these guitars, but you may see the more common Martin D-35 Johnny Cash guitar, if you do happen to see the D-42 and it's in the well kept condition it ought to be, then you're looking at a five thousand dollar guitar.