Fender Custom Shop are releasing a Pete Townsend Stratocaster based upon the 1989 Fender Clapton Strat that Pete modded by adding a piezo pickup. The piezo gave the guitar the ability to do a faux acoustic guitar sound as well as the regular Stratocaster tones. Fender now have released the guitar as a limited run for 2016.
Tone for miles
The Pete Townsend Stratocaster features three of the Lace Sensor Gold single coil pickups, which were all the rage back in the late ’80s with Fender. They’re based on classic ’50s single coil chime, just with a lower noise floor achieved with the removal of 60 Hz hum. That’s the background noise you normally get from a single coil and often makes them prone to feedback and humming under stage lights, for example.
Then you get a Fishman Powerbridge which is built into the two-post bridge. This is controlled by that extra white knob located just behind the bridge itself. This allows you to blend in your acoustic guitar sound, so you can add as much or as little of that ‘faux acoustic’ sound to you main classic Strat via ‘Gold Lace Sensor’ pickups tones.
The guitar comes in the Torino Red of Pete’s original Strat and has a maple neck which has the Clapton soft V shape. The original Eric Clapton Strat was based on his famous ‘Blackie’ guitar which was a Frankenstein Strat made from several different ’50s Strats that Clapton bought as a job lot in the USA whilst on tour. He favoured the soft V neck with vintage frets of his original and so Pete’s guitar has a similar spec!
No audio demos are available as yet, so we have included a video below of Pete’s guitar tech Alan Rogan talking about the actual guitar this is based upon, recorded back in April 2007.
UPDATE– Fender have released a promo video now. See below.
Body: 2-Piece Select Alder Finish
Urethane Neck: 1-Piece Maple with a Soft “V” Shape and 9.5” (241 mm) Radius – Frets 21
Vintage-Style Hardware: Nickel/Chrome Bridge Fishman VIB-101 Power Bridge
Pickups: Gold Lace Sensor (Bridge) Gold Lace Sensor (Middle) Gold Lace Sensor (Neck)
Controls: Master Volume, Tone 1. Master TBX Tone Control, Tone 2. Master Active Mid Boost (025dB), Power Bridge Volume
Included: Deluxe Hardshell Case, Stereo Cable, Strap, Certificate of Authenticity and Special Pete Townshend Value-Add Pack