Randy Bachman tells Newsplaneta Information in regards to the shock reunion together with his “American Girl” guitar

Tokyo — The music “American Girl” is a rock anthem and one of many greatest hits to come back out of the 1970’s. In 1976, nonetheless, guitarist Randy Bachman of The Guess Who found that the guitar he used to put in writing the traditional — and a string of different hits — had been stolen from his resort room. 

The theft haunted Bachman for nearly 50 years, however as Newsplaneta Information senior international correspondent Elizabeth Palmer reviews, when two musicians embraced on a stage in Tokyo final Friday, it was a contented ending to the story that began 46 years in the past.

Japanese musician Takeshi (left) embraces Canadian guitarist Randy Bachman after Bachman acquired his authentic Gretsch 6120 Chet Atkins guitar throughout a Canada-Japan Friendship Live performance to coincide with Canada Day on the Canadian Embassy in Tokyo, July 1, 2022.


After recording his hit with The Guess Who, Bachman went on to discovered Bachman Turner Overdrive. He was properly on his option to changing into a rock legend when, in 1976, his first and favourite guitar, a Gretsch, was stolen from the resort.

“It was the top of my life at the moment,” he informed Palmer, “as a result of I would written six Guess Who million-sellers and 6 BTO million… and performed them with that guitar.”

“I had a interval of not sleeping for a few week,” he mentioned, including that he spent that point “simply crying and mourning.”

Life, and Bachman, finally moved on, however he by no means actually obtained over the loss.

He typically reminisced publicly in regards to the guitar, together with in an interview clip that was posted to YouTube and seen in 2020 by a person named William Lengthy.

Because the COVID-19 pandemic took maintain, Lengthy was caught at residence in Vancouver. To fill a while, the beginner web sleuth determined to launch a seek for the stolen guitar.

Randy Bachman Performs Live In Tokyo
Randy Bachman’s stolen guitar, a pumpkin orange 1957 Gretsch 6120, is seen backstage on the Independence Day Celebration Reside on the Tokyo American Membership, July 2, 2022 in Tokyo, Japan.

Jun Sato/WireImage/Getty

“I heard Randy’s interview on YouTube. He mentioned it had a small mark on it by the principle management knob,” recalled Lengthy. “That may enable me to determine it. I used to be assured I may discover it.”

He pored over hundreds of photographs on-line searching for that particular mark, till he noticed an orange Gretsch at a classic guitar store in Tokyo. It was an ideal match.
However after the joys of the invention got here bitter disappointment. The guitar had been bought. Undeterred, he saved on looking.

Just a few days later, he noticed it — with its proprietor.  A younger Japanese musician known as Takeshi was taking part in in a Christmas video he’d posted on-line..

Palmer visited the guitar retailer the place Takeshi purchased Bachman’s beloved instrument.  The proprietor is aware of solely that he acquired it in a bulk buy of classic guitars someplace within the USA.

We’ll in all probability by no means know the place it spent the misplaced many years, however Bachman laid eyes on it once more for the primary time in 46 years simply final week, on the Canadian embassy’s theater in Tokyo.

Canadian guitarist Randy Bachman (left) performs together with his authentic Gretsch 6120 Chet Atkins guitar, with Japanese musician Takeshi, throughout a Canada-Japan Friendship Live performance in Tokyo, July 1, 2022.


Takeshi had provided to present it again, and in change, Bachman gave Takeshi the guitar’s twin, made within the Gretsch manufacturing facility not solely in the identical 12 months however the identical week.

Then, on stage, they did what musicians do: They made music, jamming a rendition of “American Girl” to rejoice outdated guitars, new associates, and minor miracles.

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