Guitar of the Week 16/3/19

1956 Fender Stratocaster

1956 Fender Stratocaster 

Blessed are we to be in the presence of one of the most iconic instruments of all time - the sunburst 1950's Stratocaster.

Never out of production since it's release in 1954, it's easy to overlook just how incredible the design of the Stratocaster is given how ubiquitous they have been for more than 60 years. Created by Leo in response to requests from players for increased ergonomics, more tonal variety and a tremolo system, the Strat stands tall as one of the great pieces of industrial design of the 20th Century. Say "electric guitar" to someone walking down the street and they will almost inevitably think of a Stratocaster, such is the scope of its influence on music, and it remains the world's most copied guitar.

Nothing quite compares to seeing the real deal from the 1950s though, and to think Leo Fender was walking around the factory when this was made just two years after the models release. Ash bodied Fender guitars from the '50s are really something else, the two tone sunburst lacquer sinks into the timber in a unique way and the weight and tone of them is sublime.

A genuine classic, this 1956 Fender Stratocaster features a two-tone sunburst finish over ash body, maple neck and fretboard (with rosewood 'skunk stripe' down the back), 7.25" fretboard radius, 3 single coil pickups, original 3-way toggle switch, synchronised tremolo, Kluson split tuners, original wiring harness, and original tweed hard case. Two of the 3 pickup cover are original, bridge pickup cover may have been replaced. Neck date is July '56, body date is August '56, pot codes are 304543 which corresponds to 43rd week of 1955. The original ash tray bridge cover is included, as is the original tweed hardcase. Condition is excellent overall with moderate evidence of play to the neck, plenty of fret life, some playwear to the body consistent with age and useage. Included is the original 1956 tweed hard case.