Since John Mayer stopped into the store a couple months ago and mentioned he was a fan of the Acoustic Letter, we thought it would be fun to do this review of the John Mayer Signature Martin OMJM
This is a small body guitar with huge sound. A vintage looking guitar with some modern appointments that add function and playability.
Its solid Engelmann spruce top with vintage toner is a great match for a smaller body, OM style guitar due to it’s sensitivity.
The Story Behind the Guitar
Back in 2002, John Mayer exploded onto the music scene with hits like “No Such Thing” and the following year, Martin introduced the OM-28JM John Mayer Signature Edition. Not surprisingly, even people who had never heard of John Mayer wanted to own this guitar and the limited edition of 404 instruments sold out completely.
Mayer’s “Heavier Things” album in late 2003 resulted in two more hit singles, one of which won a Grammy for “Song of the Year” and Mayer walked off with “Best Male Pop Vocal of the Year” honors.
In 2005, he created the John Mayer Trio, playing electric blues in a series of memorable sold-out shows.
With an expanding reputation and loyal fan base, the number of OM-28JM John Mayer Signature Edition guitars produced began to look awfully small. So, C. F. Martin & Co. asked John Mayer if he would create a second namesake guitar, one with many of the same attributes as his first, but which would be more affordable and more widely available.
The end result? The OMJM John Mayer Special Edition.
Like its predecessor, the OMJM John Mayer Special Edition features a top of Engelmann spruce and back and sides of East Indian rosewood for warm, rich tone. Scalloped “Hybrid” bracing enhances the full timbre of this tonewood combination. Body appointments are also similar, with a Style 45 rosette featuring a center ring of colorful paua shell, bold herringbone around the top, black/white back purfling around the back, grained ivoroid binding throughout, an HD Style zigzag back strip, and a traditional OM teardrop polished and beveled tortoise pickguard.
The Spanish cedar neck with diamond volute is carved with playing comfort in mind, combining 1-11/16″ width and low profile shape for easy fretting. The East Indian rosewood headplate sports Martin’s Old Style decal in silver rather than the familiar gold (another nod to the OM-28JM John Mayer Signature Edition) and nickel Gotoh open-geared tuners with butterbean knobs. The black African ebony fingerboard highlights 1/8″ mother of pearl position markers at the 5th, 7th (two), 9th, 15th and 17th frets, a unique 12th fret position marker of two dots flanking a slotted square, and John Mayer’s signature inlaid in mother of pearl between the 19th and 20th frets.
Style 45 white bridge pins and endpin are inlaid with abalone dots. The black African ebony bridge is fitted with a compensated TUSQ saddle, which combines with the factory-installed Martin Gold Plus Natural electronics for accurate, natural amplified sound. Adding to the beauty of this instrument is the flawless finish; vintage toner on the top, polished gloss nitrocellulose lacquer on the body and polished gloss on the headplate.
To provide a touch of his personal style to the OMJM John Mayer Special Edition guitar, John Mayer has created a unique art deco-inspired monogram, which is embroidered on the special vintage Geib style hardshell case. Each guitar in this open series bears an interior label imprinted with the signatures of John Mayer and Martin Chairman C. F. Martin IV, and individually numbered in sequence.
The Thinline® Series Gold+Plus systems include an active endpin-mounted buffered preamp to achieve the most accurate and acoustic tone. The Gold+Plus Natural captures and amplifies the natural voice of instruments with well-balanced, evenly voiced top to bottom response.