Eric Clapton Custom Shop Blackie Fender Stratocaster
The history behind Eric Clapton’s famous Fender Stratocaster guitar “Blackie” is fairly well known. A combination of three Fender Stratocaster guitars (bought by Clapton in the early 70’s). Clapton took the best bits from each and constructed what was to become his mainstay for years to come.
Clapton used the guitar extensively during the 70’s and early 80’s. It featured on a variety of his album covers throughout this period and it appeared with Clapton at Live Aid. Clapton auctioned the guitar in 2004 and it raised $959,500 for his charity and the guitar became the world’s most expensive 6 string.
Guitar Center Inc (who bought Blackie at the famous auction) commissioned Fender to reproduce the guitar which will see a portion of the profits go to Clapton’s Crossroad Centre charity. The instrument represents a faithful replica of the famous guitar down to the smallest detail. Fender have had access to the original, taking it apart making measurements, taking photographs and then building 275 replicas through a painstaking production process.
Blackie was played extensively for around 15 years and was retired in 1985 – by that time the neck was pretty much worn out and there were concerns whether the guitar could take another fret job. Given its age and its history Blackie looks a little beaten up and Fender’s custom shop have had their work cut out reproducing the guitars unique look such as the cigarette burn on the headstock the worn paint job and worn hardware.
For Clapton’s fans the guitar is a must – and while it won’t set you back close to a million bucks the bad news is that the limited run was an instant sell out so it may take a little searching to get your hands on one.
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