Kirk Hammett’s ESP 400 Series S-Type used on the famous Metallica One music video is up for auction. The guitar comes signed and with all the relevant certification to prove it is, in fact, the same one!
Metallica One ESP
Based on the 1939 book by Dalton Trumbo, and subsequent 1971 film Johnny Got His Gun, One by metal giants Metallica was a huge hit for the band. The accompanying video was on constant rotation on MTV when it was released. It featured Kirk Hammett playing an ESP 400 Series S-Type guitar, which is now up for auction. A serious piece of Metallica history, the guitar has already reached $26,000, with the auction still running!
…And Justice for All
One was the band’s third single from their fourth album …And Justice for All, with then new bass player Jason Newstead. At the time it was a big deal to see Metallica get so much coverage on television. The music video also featured snippets from the 1971 film. The premise of the track is about a soldier who steps on a landmine and loses his arms and legs, and is left paralysed, deaf, and blind. The only way he is able to communicate with the outside world is through morse code, and the video played heavily on this aspect with driving rhythms throughout.
Hammett’s guitar had a lot of airtime in the video. The model itself is an ESP 400 Series S-Type with three single-coil pickups in a Strat-style configuration, a black Floyd Rose trem, a natural finish and a rosewood fretboard. Unfortunately, little else is known about the guitar.
Johnny Got His Gun
The video and this particular instrument are a huge part of the band’s history. If you get the chance, I would recommend reading the anti-war book Johnny Got His Gun, as the whole premise is terrifying and brings home how terrible wars can be. I, like many others that year, read the book off the back of this track and it has stuck with me for many years.
Update 12 April 2021
It sold for $112,500 and whoever won the auction, got a cool slice of Metallica history. If you did win the guitar and want to lend it to me, feel free to contact me via the site.
- ESP 400 Series S-Type played by Kirk Hammett: YouTube/Metallica
- The Metallica One guitar!: Heritage Auctions