David Gilmour’s 1971 Martin D12-28

David purchased this guitar from a personal friend in the early 70s, and ever since then, it served as his main 12-string acoustic guitar for studio work.

I wrote that on a 12-string Martin. I bought it off a friend of mine in about ’72 or ’73, I guess. It’s also in the sale. I wrote “Wish You Were Here” one day in the control room of Number Three Studios at Abbey Road. That riff dragged itself out of that guitar, and it became “Wish You Were Here.” It didn’t go on the road either.

David Gilmour : Interview with Rolling Stone on Why He’s Selling 120 Guitars: ‘Everything Has Got to Go
David playing his 12-string Martin D12-28 in 2019.
David playing his 12-string Martin D12-28 in 2019.

As noted by David, it was on this guitar that he came up with the melody for the song “Wish You Were Here” from Pink Floyd’s 1975 album. He used the guitar to record all the 12-string parts of the song and a 1969 Martin D-35 to record the solos.

I had recently bought a Martin 12 string from someone I knew and I was strumming it in the control room at No.3 at Abbey Road and that just started coming out, that riff …I started mildly obsessing with this riff that was slowly developing and, again, people’s ears – Roger’s [Waters] ears – pricked up.

Every time I listen to the actual original recording I think God I should have really done that a little bit better, but the idea was that it was like a guitar playing on the radio and someone in their room at home …listening to it and joining in, so the other guitar was kind of supposed to be a kid at home joining in with the guitar he’s listening to on the radio, and therefore it wasn’t supposed to be too slick… and it wasn’t.

David GIlmour

From that point on, the guitar was used on “Hey You” from the 1979 album The Wall, and on “Paranoid Eyes” for the band’s 1983 anti-war concept album The Final Cut.


GroundGuitar counts on your criticism and feedback. In case you notice anything wrong with the information posted on this page, or you have knowledge of something that you would like to share, be sure to leave a comment below.

In case you want to talk to me directly and privately, please use the Contact Form and I will get back to you as soon as possible. (Dan)

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments