Why Johnny Marr Gave "Skint" Noel Gallagher His Guitars

15 June 2018, 18:14

The legendary Smiths guitarist told Radio X's John Kennedy about meeting the Oasis songsmith before he found fame.

Johnny Marr has recalled how he came to give a young Noel Gallagher not one, but two of his iconic guitars, and revealed he doesn't "regret it for a minute".

Speaking in conversation with Radio X's John Kennedy last night (14 June), the former Smiths guitarist shared the circumstances that led to him giving the pre-fame Oasis rocker a helping hand.

“Yeah we went to a guitar shop. I didn’t give him a guitar from the shop. I gave him one that was much more valuable,” he laughed.

Johnny Marr speaks to Radio X's John Kennedy
Johnny Marr speaks to Radio X's John Kennedy. Picture: Radio X

Speaking at the special charity event, which celebrated the release of his Call The Comet album and was in aid of Global's Make Some Noise, he explained: “He was skint back then and I just liked him.

"Honestly, I had no idea - who would have known that Oasis were going to be (so big). They didn’t know! No one could have predicted what was going to happen to them."

The Hi Hello singer added: “He was just this guy who I recognised was intense and really serious about what he was doing, and he was skint and I had a load of guitars and I thought right OK well i’ll give him this guitar.

"And you know, it could have come to nothing and really it would have made no difference to me. And I had some people give me a helping hand when I started out. Little things here and there, and you need it."

However, the How Soon Is Now? rocker went on to explain that Noel managed to break the first guitar he gave him leading him to gift him a new one.

“So it just turned out that he became really really successful and he hit someone in the audience with it and broke it and asked me for another one," Marr told John Kennedy.

"Which I gave him... because I was drinking back then, and that’s absolutely the truth. But I don’t regret it for a minute.

"Those two guitars I gave Noel, one was the one I wrote The Queen Is Dead on and recorded all of that stuff on and I’m really more than happy that it’s gone to a good home.

"He loves having them and you know me and him have a laugh and a joke about how I loaned them and he never returned them and fans get on to me about that…

Speaking about his friend, collaborator and fellow Mancunian, Marr concluded: “But they’re absolutely Noel’s guitars and I’m proud to be part of that story really ‘cause he’s a good guy”.

On the night, Marr also spoke to John Kennedy about his early beginnings and how he became obsessed with the guitar, how he felt when The Smiths split, and why he went solo.

Johnny Marr's third solo album, Call The Comet, album is out now.