Former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr has been reunited with a guitar stolen 10 years ago after a gig in September 2000.
The 1964 cherry red Gibson SG — worth at least £30,000 — was found in a fan’s north London home after he admitted stealing it from the Scala in Kings Cross after a concert by Johnny Marr and the Healers in 2000.
Stephen White, 38, says that he is “disgusted” with himself for taking the guitar and not returning it. Highbury magistrates court heard last week that it had been a “spur of the moment decision” after White found himself backstage following the gig. The court heard how he had noticed the guitar unattended and then fled out of a fire exit.
The theft came to light following a tip off from a guitar shop in Denmark Street (popularly known as Tin Pan Alley) in London’s West End where White had taken it to be repaired.
White, who had no previous convictions and was on anti-depressants at the time of the theft, was sentenced to 200 days community service.
Marr, currently on tour with his current band the Cribs in New Zealand has been contacted about the guitar and according to police sources bears no malice towards White.
Police Constable Christopher Swain, of Camden’s Beat Crimes Unit, said: “We tracked down Mr Marr through his management company and he was absolutely chuffed.”
The vintage cherry red Gibson isn’t the only SG in Marr’s collection he also owns a blonde version that was custom made for him. Other famous SG owners are Eric Clapton, James Hetfield, Keith Richards and Angus Young.