The Fender Stratocaster is an electric guitar brand Fender American. Its silhouette has become the icon of the same electric guitar and is one of the most popular models in the world. She was born impressions of the first guitarists who have used the Telecaster, many of them wanted a second cutaway, a microphone and an additional arm vibrato.
Designed in 1954 by Leo Fender, Freddie Tavares and George Fullerton, the Stratocaster takes the form avant-garde for its' time. Not being a guitarist himself, Leo Fender uses professional country music, such as Bill Carson and Rex Gallion, to validate the options selected at each step of the design and ensure that the design meets their needs.
From the start, the guitar is designed for mass production. Indeed, the invention and manufacture of electric guitar, all designers and models alike, is very quickly passed the experimental stage of mass production. It has largely contributed to the evolution of Western popular music since the 1950s.
The Stratocaster guitar is a type of solid-body, that is to say "full body" (as opposed to the acoustic guitar whose body forms a hollow sound box), it consists of a body by Alder or ash as finishes, with a handle screwed by four screws until May 1971, by three screws then back to four screws in the early 1980s. The neck, causing massive maple, is a composition of maple and rosewood for the key since late 1959. With three single-coil pickups (single coil), the Stratocaster originally allowed to get three sounds. The selector (switch) to five positions appeared in the 1970s, making the selection of microphones more stable. Today, the new model Stratocaster, equipped with a special switch called "S-1" provides extensive sonic palette (this option no longer available with the arrival of new models, American Standard in January 2008. Only guitars of the American Deluxe range are equipped with this switch). Some guitars (including the models 'signature' for Eric Clapton, Richie Sambora, Buddy Guy and Nono) are equipped with an active circuit with attenuation of bass and treble (TBX / treble-bass expander) equalization and variable frequency averages (MDX / mid boost) with 12 or 25dB sound power (depending on model).
The Stratocaster is the first guitar to be fitted with an arm vibrato effectively. The other arm vibrato of the time, and especially those of Paul Bigsby, did not keep a stable agreement. Leo Fender invented an easel-Cordier block which keeps the guitar tuned. Until the arrival of easels vibrato Floyd Rose locking in the 1980s, this model was the most effective.
It stands out in terms of design, quickly enough other instruments (similar) products at the time in adorning themselves in bright colors (guitars produced hitherto existed only in shade or wooden sunburst, a gradient brown) and adopting a revolutionary ergonomic design called French curves.
The Stratocaster is distinguished mainly by its practical aspects: its weight is low compared to other models (especially the Gibson Les Paul, the main competitor as another model "lighthouse"), its cut sides allow easy access to recent cases (most severe). It is undoubtedly the model electric guitar's most versatile and the most imitated.
His success was assured by many famous guitarists who adopt, including: Jimi Hendrix, Jeff Beck, Ritchie Blackmore, Eric Clapton, John Frusciante, Rory Gallagher, David Gilmour, Kurt Cobain, Buddy Guy, Buddy Holly, Mark Knopfler, Hank Marvin of The Shadows, Stevie Ray Vaughan, or in France, Jean-Pierre Danel-and-M, among many others ...
Models 'signature' is created (often limited edition) to pay tribute to these artists, often at prices high enough.
The original models of the 1950s and early 1960s have reached such dimensions in the 1980s that Fender decided to reissue models incorporating the specifics of their elders as the "re-issue." These editions are still being marketed today.
First produced only in the United States, the workshops are also created in the 1980s and 1990s in Japan and Mexico. These workshops have different skills, which (mainly by the combination-varnished wood violin) gives a different sound depending on their origin. The Stratocasters are also manufactured in South Korea under the Squier by Fender. Versions for left-or twelve strings are gradually sold.
Improvements were made over the years and the mechanical oil bath is introduced.
In the 1980s, success is prompting many manufacturers to offer copies then develop superstrata drawing more aggressive, featuring Pink Floyd and devices used in very hard rock and heavy metal. These guitars are hybrids of those brands Ibanez and Jackson / Charvel (note they are mostly Humbuckers and configuration type HH or HSH). They are less versatile than a real Stratocaster.
The Stratocaster exists today with many possible configurations that are characterized by different sets (American Deluxe Highway 1 Start, etc.). The combinations are almost endless and each guitar is "unique", the microphones could be different, the timber body can be different type of vibrato, head, etc. With two guitars being made in one day may not sound like one another, it becomes important to try in store. Moreover, in the market during the Fender Stratocaster 1980s have often been changed, many have benefited from installing Kahler locking bridge (type Spyder), so that the Stratocasters during this period may not have the same sound as the original.
Stratocaster 1954: The first layer is the grail for collectors. Produced in limited series, they remain extremely rare (a little after ten prototypes manufactured Fender sixty copies of pre-spring 54, essentially for the shops as a sample or guitar near the mark, then started the production in small series October 12, 1954 with 200 instruments, or 268 guitars all over the year). A beautiful vintage Start this today reached easily 60 to 80 000 Euros for a production model, 150 000 for some models of pre-production, or more if it is a (very) rare Custom Color which we know 3 or 4 copies (color standard in Fender, of all time, being degraded Sunburst, sometimes yellowish or amber pre-production models). Some famous musicians play on this legendary instrument, including some very rare models had a body in a single room, specifically supporting the natural vibrations and thus the sound of the instrument. David Gilmour has a model Custom Color (off white) this year, the legendary guitar bearing the serial number 0001, although it is absolutely not the first produced. They say that the Fiesta Red model of the same year, hosted by Leo Fender guitarist Pee Wee Crayton, was also the serial number 0001. Other owners include '54 Stratocaster Mark Knopfler (standard color sunburst), George Harrison (standard color sunburst offered by Eric Clapton), Eric Johnson (standard color sunburst), and Jean-Pierre Danel (Miss Daisy, a very rare amber sunburst model, body in one piece, one of the first layer of pre-production, produced in spring-summer 1954) and Lady Rose, another Stratocaster 1954, but production this time, and that belonged to Hank Williams Jr.
Models '50s: Other vintages 1950 all give exceptional instruments, preferred by the greatest musicians (which blew their side in the early 80s). Eric Clapton Strats and mythical Brownie (1956) and Blackie (composite of several models, mainly 1957 and sold over a million dollars for his Crossroads Center drug treatment) or Hank Marvin (1958, first delivered in Europe Stratocaster).
Models '60s: Various models of the early 1960s have brought happiness to great musicians like Stevie Ray Vaughan, Rory Gallagher, Mark Knopfler, John Frusciante, or Hank Marvin.
Stratocaster "L Series": Between 1963 and 1965, the serial numbers of Stratocasters reached 100 000. An error on the plates bearing the number in question did include an "L" instead of "1", hence the unofficial nickname Series L. These guitars are usually excellent instruments, the sound fatter than the 1950 models, which were equipped with a maple neck, while the L series have a rosewood neck with a rosewood fingerboard. George Harrison and his legendary "Rocky" re-varnished and decorated by him as psychedelic, or in France, Axel Bauer-or M-use instruments.
Models late 1960 and 1970: Long disparaged - often rightly - of these models the time when the brand was owned by CBS had lost a lot of qualities that make the legend of the early models. It's less brilliant and with less body stringed sloppy, etc. Over time, these vintages in the butt wide (wide headstock), the Bullet bar adjustment and setting of round three screws have however finally found the favor of collectors, and even some guitar, but not least, Jimi Hendrix, The Edge, Yngwie Malmsteen and Ritchie Blackmore.