July 6, 2015 in Historic Fenders

Gilmour’s Strats Part 3 — Gilmour’s Red Stratocaster

blog_shineon_redstratAnother notable guitar in David Gilmour’s collection became his main instrument during the post-Roger Waters era of Pink Floyd – from the mid-1980s through the early 2000s. Gilmour purchased this candy apple red ’52 reissue in 1983 (along with two cream-colored models), and it can be found in his hands for promotional photos and live concerts during his solo period during the mid-1980s. This includes his acclaimed solo album About Face, the first post-Waters Pink Floyd album A Momentary Lapse of Reason, and the live albums Delicate Sound of Thunder and Pulse.

The guitar itself features a number of differences compared to Gilmour’s previous guitar preferences. In addition to finally selecting a maple fretboard and alder body, Gilmour also chose EMG-SA active pickups, including the installation of the EMG-EXG and a midrange presence booster. During this period he seemed to favor the combination of the higher-output and sustain coming from active pickups, and continued to use this configuration for the next two decades. Gilmour’s red Strat became his main axe in 1983, and was used extensively until around 2006, which was around the time his black Strat was returned from the Hard Rock Cafe, and found its way back into his hands. With the black Strat in the mix, his red Strat was gently retired, and has only seen during the song ‘Shine On You Crazy Diamond’ in recent performances.

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There are several other guitars in Gilmour’s collection, but the three Strat’s briefly reviewed here are definitely the main instruments that come to mind when you think of David Gilmour and Pink Floyd. It seems that his black Strat is the one he most commonly used onstage and in the studio during their heyday, while his red Strat had quite a workload during through the 1980s and 1990s. His legendary #0001 is also famous and noteworthy, so it’s hard to decide which of these guitars is actually his favorite, but there’s no question that each of these instruments are important rock music relics. Needless to say, they’re interesting guitars and each one has quite a story attached.

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