Waylon Jennings Estate Auction: The Guitars

On Sunday 10/5, nearly 500 individual lots and over 2,000 items from Waylon Jennings will be auctioned of by Guernsey’s at the at the Musical Instrument Museum in Phoenix, with the proceeds from the auction going to the Phoenix Children’s Hospital. Out of the items there’s a total of 21 musical instruments that belonged to Waylon personally, as well as 11 amplifiers, a few keyboards, and even a set of Waylon Jennings conga drums. Below is a selection of some of the most valuable, and the most interesting items from the Waylon Jennings musical instrument collection.

More Details on the Waylon Jennings Auction


1946 Martin D28 Herringbone Guitar

Said to be Waylon’s personal guitar that he used to write songs with at home and on the road, this 1946 Martin with a Dreadnaught-style body has a Sitka spruce, mahogany neck, and ebony fingerboard. The guitar is in great playing condition, and considering its famous owner its considered one of the greatest Martin collectibles currently on the market. Serial number: 95073. Estimated $30,000-$40,000.

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1943 Martin Guitar 00021

Another guitar said to be played by Waylon often and used for songwriting, it is listed as a 1943 model, but says it was numbered in September of 1948. Sitka spruce top, mahogany neck and ebony fretboard. The original tuners have been replaced with Grover Rotomatics tuners. “This was one of Waylon’s personal Martin Flattops,” says Guernsey’s. Serial number: 89206. Estimated $30,000-$40,000.

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Yamaha Acoustic Guitar “Roger Miller 1976”

An acoustic Yamaha guitar with “Roger Miller 1976” carved into the top along with other scribblings. This guitar could probably tell a story, but its story is not known. THis is one of two instruments attributed to Roger Miller in the auction. Estimated $3,000-$5,000.

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Gibson 1987 Chet Atkins CE Guitar

This nylon string classical-style guitar with a piezo pickup was a gift to Waylon from Chet Atkins, and is signed by Chet and dated ’87 on the sound covers. White signed to RCA, Chet Atkins was Waylon’s first primary producer. When Waylon won his creative freedom from RCA, Chet left the picture and became the face of stringent label control during country music’s Outlaw era. But later in life Waylon and Chet remained friends. Serial number: 82956570. Estimated $15,000 $25,000.

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Baby Custom-Made Fender Telecaster for Shooter

The interesting part about this guitar is that it has a Telecaster body like all of Waylon’s electric guitars, but a shortened neck so a young Shooter Jennings (Waylon’s son) could play it. It is marked, “Made by John Birch, Birmingham, England,” and is said to be in excellent condition. Estimated $1,500 $2,000.

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Fender Custom Shop Waylon Jennings Telecaster

There are actually four total of these custom shop Fender Telecaster guitars that are part of the auction, and each looks the same. None of them are the leather-clad black and white telecaster that Waylon played on stage for years, but were made by Fender to look very similar. Three all come with Fender Certificates of Authenticity and cases, serial numbers WJ037 Estimated $10,000 $15,000. A fourth without a case and some damage is estimated at $8,000-$12,000. Serial #WJ038

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Waylon Jennings’ Unidentified Telecaster-Style Guitar

One of the most unusual items in not just the guitar portion of the auction, but the entire Waylon estate auction is this art project guitar that appears to be an early blonde and black Fender Telecaster guitar from the shape of the body and head stock, but has what appear to be little mirror or mother-of-pearl tiles haphazardly glued to the body. The guitar has no label, and is in rough shape. If it could talk, the stories it could tell. Estimated $1,000-$1,5000.

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“Little” Jimmy Dickens Dobro Resonator Guitar

This dobro resonator with a pickup was given to Waylon Jennings personally by “Little” Jimmy Dickens whose name appears in pearl inlay down the fretboard. “Little” Jimmy Dickens is the oldest living member of the Grand Ole Opry. It’s in excellent condition. Estimated $6,000 $8,000.

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Martin Mandolin Model A

From Waylon’s personal collection, no year is given for this mandolin, but it does come with a serial number #25056. Estimated $7,000 $9,000.

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Violin Given to Waylon Jennings by Roger Miller

A fiddle missing a tuner with no name or date, but with special value because it was given to Waylon by Roger Miller. Waylon’s widow Jessi Colter recalls when Roger gave Waylon the fiddle on their front porch. Estimated $3,000 $4,000.

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