This is a vintage 1959 Guild M-20 small body flat top acoustic guitar. This particular example, serial number 1273, is in near mint 100% all original condition and includes the original soft shell case. Perhaps the finest example of any M-20 we’ve had, this spectacular specimen is in near pristine cosmetic condition with absolutely no issues whatsoever. An incredible find, especially in such shape, this beautiful instrument is worthy of the finest collection, while it would be right at home on the wall of a studio as well.
The Guild M-20 was famously pictured with Nick Drake on the cover of his masterpiece album Bryter Layter. As simple as it may appear, the M-20’s petite size, with an innately lighter projection, is perfectly complemented by the darker tonality inherent in a completely mahogany construction. And it is this perfected balance that results in the M-20 being considered the absolute best within its class. It is warm yet clear, with a uniquely musical voice. It is generally preferred over the Martin 0-17, the Gibson B-15 (and B-25/LG-2/LG-3 for that matter), and other miscellaneous American-made models of similar stature.
This ’59 Guild M-20 features: mahogany top/back/sides, a 1-piece mahogany neck, a Brazilian rosewood fingerboard with dot inlays, the âpeakedâ Guild headstock decal with an open-book headstock profile, Waverly 3-on-a-side tuning machines, a painted headstock veneer with a plastic truss rod cover, a rosewood bridge, a large Ghost label sticker inside, and original white plastic bridge/strap pins.
Absolutely issue-free, with no cracks, no breaks, no repairs, and no modifications, this example is in near mint, well-preserved, cosmetic condition. Since the Guild M-20 was generally marketed as a student/budget instrument, it is rare to see one in such great shape, with no signs of abuse nor improper storage. The bridge is perfectly intact, with no lift, and without having affected the structural integrity of the top in the slightest. The neck is perfectly straight, the truss rod works, and the neck angle is fine. The action is good, and it is comfortably low. The guitar sounds fantastic, and is really quite compatible with all types of playing styles and techniques. Great for simple strumming, while also particularly nice for finger-picking, this an all-around beautiful guitar both for usual playing, as well as, professional studio recording.
The ’50s Guild instruments characteristically have a much lighter build quality, and tend to be more open and transparent with respect to sound. This guitar definitely represents such quite well. It is more clear and well-balanced than your average mid-’60s M-20.
The original soft case is in excellent condition, thought the accessory compartment door has nearly ripped off.
M20, M 20