A 1996 Gibson Explorer
Serial No. 94056324, in black finish, offset angular body, twenty-two fret rosewood fingerboard with dot inlays, two humbucking pickups, three rotary controls, selector switch, metal bridge, metal stud tailpiece and white pickguard; and a brown rectangular hardshell case with pink plush lining and Lee Dickson's handwritten adhesive paper label Gibson - Black Explorer /?94056324

The Explorer was introduced by Gibson in 1958.

Eric Clapton purchased this guitar at a Stevie Ray Vaughan Benefit Auction. He said that he has played it on occasion.
Gibson Explorer/Black

FORTE, Dan The Interview - Eric Clapton in Guitar Player, GPI Collector's Edition, Summer 1986, p.19
HENKE, James Eric Clapton: The Rolling Stone Interview in Rolling Stone, Issue 615, October 17, 1991, p.47
BEARED, Red In The Studio - 24 Nights, transcribed in Where's Eric!, Issue 3, 1992, p.2

Lot Essay

In an interview for Guitar Player magazine in 1985, Eric Clapton admitted that "Stevie Ray Vaughan is exactly what I wanted to be when I was 16 years old." According to an interview with Red Beared on Canadian radio in 1991, Clapton said he thought Stevie Ray Vaughan's playing before his death was "...beyond anything I could even describe. I think the best way to describe it was just to have been in my shoes, in the dressing room, watching the monitor, with the door open and hear him on stage, knowing that I had to go up later and play. What was happening was that I was actually so bowled over and so in love with this guy, who was playing on stage from the heart completely.....there was this guy playing one kind of music, in one kind of way and it made me feel, God, are you ever going to get to that point, the point you are watching right now." Similarly, Clapton enthused in an interview for Rolling Stone magazine that "...The worst thing for me was that Stevie Ray Vaughan had been sober for three years and was at his peak. When he played that night, he had all of us standing there with our jaws dropped. I mean, Robert Cray and Jimmie Vaughan and Buddy Guy were just watching in awe. There was no one better than him on this planet. Really unbelievable."

The stage-shot illustrated features Clapton with Stevie Ray Vaughan, Phil Palmer, Jimmie Vaughan and Buddy Guy at Alpine Valley, East Troy, Wisconsin, August 26, 1990. This was Stevie Ray Vaughan's last performance.

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