American rocker Buddy Cage has been reunited with his beloved guitar 12 years after it was stolen in New York City.

The New Riders Of The Purple Sage star was devastated when the custom-made instrument was taken from his van during a break-in in 2002.

Cage, 68, who has played with stars including the Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan and Janis Joplin, attempted to track it down, but eventually gave up.

However, the hunt resumed last Saturday (16Aug14) when a fan contacted him and alerted him to the instrument's listing on auction website eBay.com. Cage tracked down the detective who worked on the break-in case and they eventually traced the guitar to a Brooklyn resident who bought the instrument at a flea market.

The musician admits he is delighted to have been reunited with his prized possession, telling the New York Post, "I'm thrilled - still can't believe they found it. It was like I lost a member of my family and got him back again... It was a tremendous loss. It was irreplaceable. It was custom-built just for me... I never left home without it... I cant wait to get it back on tour with me."