Derek Trucks’ 1935/36 National Triolian (Sunburst)

This is Derek’s first National guitar, the second one being the 1936 National Duolian Steel. Based on the photos, he acquired this sunburst model earlier on, at least before 2007.

Derek playing the guitar in 2007. Photo by: Xophersmith

As far as usage, this sunburst model was used on “Come See About Me” from Tedeschi Trucks Band’s 2011 album Revelator, and probably a lot more stuff but at this point, we haven’t been able to find any more direct quotes from Derek on this.

“Come See About Me” is also in open D. I played my old National, which is probably from the mid ’30s. It’s pretty funky looking with somewhat of a sunburst finish painted on it.

Ball & Chain, Derek Trucks and Susan Tedeschi’s Blues Union. 2012
Two of Derek's National guitar at his home studio.
Two of Derek’s National guitars at his home studio.

As far as the model, it’s most likely a Triolian, based on the bound neck. Also, based on the fact that it’s a 14-fret model, it was likely made no earlier than 1935, and no later than 1936, since it has a slotted headstock.


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