The 1974 Martin 000-28 Eric Clapton used to write Wonderful Tonight is going up for auction

It’s estimated to sell for between £300,000 and £400,000, but previous high-profile guitar auctions indicate it could go for much higher.

Eric Clapton's 1974 Martin 000-28

Credit: Bonhams

When you purchase through affiliate links on Guitar.com, you may contribute to our site through commissions. Learn more

Eric Clapton’s 1974 000-28 Martin acoustic – with which he wrote Wonderful Tonight among others – is set to go up for auction this month via Bonhams, with a current estimated sell price of between £300,000 and £400,000.

Part of Bonham’s Rock, Pop & Film sale on 12 June in Knightsbridge, London, Clapton’s Martin 000-28 was his primary guitar during the ‘70s, and was used “extensively” for writing, recording and performing, until he parted ways with it in 1999 as part of a charitable auction in aid of his organisation, Crossroads Centre.

“That guitar went everywhere with me,” Clapton recalls, while also remembering how he felt when it was sold for the first time: “During the auction, the guys were all around me, and I felt myself starting to cry.”

As Bonhams notes, two elements unique to Clapton make this guitar standout beyond its already storied history: a sticker on its side honouring one of Clapton’s favourite songwriters, country singer Don Williams, which reads: “She’s in Love with a Rodeo Man”; and trademark burns on the headstock resulting from Clapton’s habit of wedging cigarettes underneath the guitar’s strings.

Eric Clapton's 1974 Martin 000-28
Credit: Bonhams

“This guitar is a one-of-a-kind collectible of immense cultural significance. Written in 1976 by Clapton while waiting for his then-girlfriend (and future wife) Pattie Boyd to get ready for a night out, the song Wonderful Tonight is an ageless anthem,” says Claire Tole-Moir, Head of Bonhams’ Popular Culture department. 

“With intergenerational appeal, the song’s popularity has grown since its release four decades ago, with more than 450 million streams on Spotify, 490 million views across YouTube, and billions of plays on terrestrial radio.”

Wonderful Tonight is one of Slowhand’s most notable songs with a collective billions of streams across platforms as of June 2024.

Eric Clapton’s 1974 Martin 000-28 is heading to auction on Wednesday, 12 June at 1PM BST. For more information, head to Bonhams.

Related Artists

Related Brands

Related Tags


The world’s leading authority and resource for all things guitar.

© 2024 Guitar.com is part of NME Networks.