This was the pair to lot 35, one of the two main stage guitars for the period 1994-1996. The cream finish on these guitars is sometimes referred to as Olympic White. Pairs of guitars, with a similar appearance, are important for Clapton's stage performances as his intense style of playing results in frequent string breaks - hence the origin of the nick-name Slowhand [ie. early on in his career, Clapton's frequent string breaks on stage were accompanied by slow hand clapping from the audience]. Lee Dickson, Clapton's guitar technician, has confirmed the regularity of Clapton's string breaks, in various interviews. In May 1994 for instance, Dickson revealed: "...When stringing up Eric's main guitars I have to stretch the strings above and beyond the call of duty because he bends them to breaking point all the time. But it's a nice feeling when he's been doing that for two or three numbers and the guitar is still perfectly in tune..."
One of the photographs illustrated here (photo b) shows Eric Clapton on stage with Jimmie Vaughan at the Stevie Ray Vaughan Tribute Concert, Austin Music Hall, Austin, Texas, May 12, 1995. The other (photo a) shows Clapton on stage at the Royal Albert Hall, London, February, 1994. The Strat Clapton is seen playing in these shots is either the guitar in this lot or in lot 35.