Bassist Pete Sears had his prized custom bass guitar stolen while at a music festival in Germany thirty-five years ago. After spending a couple of decades looking for his prized guitar, the former Jefferson Starship member will soon be reunited with the one-of-a-kind instrument.
According to the Marin Journal, Sears did not even have many chances to play the brand-new Doug Irwin bass, nicknamed “Dragon” for it’s uniquely-shaped inlay, before it was stolen during a riot at the 1978 music festival. “I felt sick,” he told the Journal earlier this week, “It was like losing a work of art. I couldn’t believe it was gone. I was in shock. The whole band was in shock.”
“Barely a week has gone by that I haven’t lamented on the loss of this beautiful instrument,” he wrote in a Facebook post. Tom Lieber, who crafted the guitar out of the same wood as Jerry Garcia’s own electric bass, posted an ad four years ago offering a $2,500 reward to anyone who came forward with the bass. Someone finally responded to that ad a few weeks ago saying he was in possession of the guitar and would like to arrange for it’s return.
“I couldn’t believe it,” Sears told the paper. “I was absolutely ecstatic.”
The prized guitar is back with Liber, who is repairing some damage on it from over the years, before shipping it back to Sears’ home in San Rafael where he’s already made big plans for it.
“I can’t wait to get it in my hands again and try it out onstage jamming with Barry, Roger and John in Moonalice,” he wrote in a Facebook post, “I never thought I’d see it again.”