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A 1986 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model
A 1986 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model

A 1986 Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton Signature Model
Serial No. V000009, in pewter finish, bird's-eye maple neck with skunk-stripe routing, twenty-two fret fingerboard with dot inlays, three Fender Lace Sensor pickups, three rotary controls, selector switch, tremolo bridge/tailblock and white pickguard; and a black rectangular hardshell case with black plush lining and Lee Dickson's handwritten tie-on label E.C. E.C. Grey Strat V000009 and adhesive paper label inscribed Fender - Pewter Strat V000009 (Mike Stevens ) Pewt. Grey C. Shop E.C.

Fender launched the Eric Clapton Signature Model to the general public in 1988. The previous year Clapton had signed a contract with Fender to endorse the production of these Signature Models. In 1986 however he received prototype Signature Strats from Fender.

Eric Clapton used this guitar for a great deal of stage and recording work in the late 1980s. Clapton requested this colour for the first of his signature Stratocaster models - it is actually a Mercedes paint colour, which he chose to match the Mercedes he owned at the time.
Fender Strat/Pewter
DUCHOSSOIR, A.R. Stratocaster - The Success Story Of A Legendary Guitar Born And Made In California, San Francisco: Hal Leonard Publishing, 1988.

Lot Essay

See note on p.8

According to George Blanda of Fender, he made one red and two pewter Clapton Signature Stratocaster prototypes in 1986. They had serial numbers V000007, V000008 and V000009. These were presented to Clapton who apparently used them for recording August and for stage work throughout 1986 and 1987. The pewter Strat V000009 in this lot is one of these prototypes. (According to Lee Dickson, the red prototype was given by Clapton to English cricketer Ian Botham as a gift in exchange for a his bat.) This guitar originally had a twenty-one fret neck and an 'Original Contour Body' decal on the headstock and was pictured on the cover of A.R. Duchossoir's book, with that neck in 1988. The original twenty-one fret neck was subsequently exchanged for a twenty-two fret neck, put on by Mike Stevens of Fender Custom Shop later that year. This guitar with its present neck served as Clapton's main stage guitar during his 1989 Royal Albert Hall season. It remained as the back up guitar with the introduction of the black signature models in mid-1990.

The stage-shots illustrated show this guitar on three different occasions:
a) Clapton at rehearsals for the 1989 Royal Albert Hall season at Bray Studios, Windsor
b) Clapton performing Holy Mother, at Orchestral Night, The Royal Albert Hall, London, March 7, 1991
c) A stage-shot during rehearsals for The Royal Albert Hall season, 1991

This guitar is also pictured in the Terry O'Neill backstage photograph on p.79.

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