Another black Strat

Sony BMG have generously donated a Fender Stratocaster – not the acclaimed black Strat, but it’s both black and a Strat and, above all, signed by David – to support Musicians on Call; a non-profit organisation using music to assist in the healing process, not only for the actual patients, but also their families and carers.

You can see all the details here. Bidding ends in a fortnight’s time: 5 March.

If you do happen to place the winning bid, please be aware that you will be responsible for all shipping/handling/insurance costs, as well as customs fees and import duties if outside the USA.

How do you think this auction will pan out, considering the precarious balance of the current economic climate? Obviously, people are tightening their purse strings right now and luxuries are of secondary importance to many, which could turn out to be a great shame for the beneficiary.

Or could this perhaps be a comparative bargain waiting to be snapped up by someone who has hitherto delayed placing their order for a Signature model? Admittedly, there are still two weeks to go before the auction’s close, but there hasn’t been much activity in the last week, with the bidding held at $1,300.

What do you think? Will clever fanciers place their bids in the last hour or so?

You can find out more about the David Gilmour Signature Strat here, including its history and some rather fetching wallpaper to smarten up your desktop (or just make you want a guitar that looks like David’s even more).

Author: FEd

Features Editor of David Gilmour’s official blog, The Blog (‘Features’ previously being its rather naff title), affectionately – or lazily – shortened to ‘FEd’.

42 thoughts on “Another black Strat”

  1. I would never “meddle” in such an auction as most bidders are “animals” with their backs against “the wall” always wanting “more” for less.

    “A momentary lapse of reason” could be “the final cut” that quickens your “pulse” and reduces your savings to “relics”.

    I “wish you were here” for a local auction I attended a few weeks back. It was an estate sale on some “broken china” once used by an international spy. It was daftly advertised as “a saucerful of secrets” to be clever I guess but personally, I don’t think that stuff ever really “works”.

  2. My first thought was “not again”, meaning a fine guitar I won’t get… But hey, I’m really satisfied with my own Strat, so I doesn’t matter.

    Hopefully the winner will play it… (but to be honest I doubt; it will go either on a wall, a safe – if it was expensive enough, or to eBay).

    Best regards,

  3. …correcting myself: no one will play it…

    The signature is where the pick lands too often…


  4. I think it will end up hanging on a collector’s wall with others, and there will be a lot of bids made in the last day.

    Final bid: $10k

  5. it might be heresy to say this but what the winning bidder does with the guitar doesn’t bother me as long as the charity gets a nice sum of money out of it.

    i was having a look round the web site and musicians on call seems a brilliant idea. i know music has been a major comfort in my life.

    i think there will be a lot of bids at the last minute. i hope they make more than $1,300.

    this puts something into my mind. i was in liverpool in 2004 in the cavern club bar. isn’t there a guitar of david’s on the wall there? could have put a week’s pay on the fact there is.

  6. I think people that can afford to bid will bid. There are so so so many people out there with enough money in their banks that they can ride any economical tide.

    Let’s just hope they are Gilmour fans. And hope David didn’t use a black permanent marker to sign it. :))

    I, myself won’t be bidding. Unless is goes for a tenner. But then that wouldn’t do Musicians on Call any good, would it?

    Hope it goes for big big money for a great cause.


    1. Sorry mate, but if my eyes and monitor don’t betray me, it is gold… Black on black would be an idea (there are some good geek shirts for example, have a look here) but if he had used a nail to scratch it, it would be far better. 😉


  7. Interesting thing, as in the US, a DG Signature Strat is dealt at above 4000 US-$.

    I think, bidding will at least reach that price, don’t you agree?!

  8. What I want to know is, how does one sign an all-black guitar? He could either sign the neck, which would be an interesting solution, or he could sign with a pen that writes in silver.

    I think the bidding will exceed the retail price. Anyone who just wants a DG Strat would go to a Fender dealer. Those who are bidding on this one are either going to be more generous because it is a charity, or will want to hang THIS GUITAR on a wall and will therefore bid as high as necessary.

    Personally, you’ll never find me buying a $4,000 guitar. Not just because I don’t have the money to do so, but also on principal. Yes, I’m a DG fan; no, I don’t need a replica THAT BADLY.

    1. Dan, if you zoom in on the pic he seems to have gone for the silver pen route.

      I’m sure the price will find it’s way up there. I don’t think the credit crunch will have much impact on the kind of person who splashed out a few grand on a collectable guitar anyway.

  9. IMO it is not a ‘real’ DG Fender Stratocaster, because there is no pickup switch knob. It is only a copy of the Custom Shop guitar. But it would be good to get it. 🙂

    With David’s signature…

    1. Good point, Thomas.

      Just being black and a Strat doesn’t make it the black Strat. My bad.

      Not so generous after all, then…

      That should make the bidding even more interesting.

  10. All I can say is I wish I could have one. 😛

    I would not be able to afford the Custom Shop DG Strat let alone bid on one with my new job.

    For the record, if I did manage to get a DG Strat, I “would” play it. I would play it along side Eugene. I am really interested in trying out the smaller tremolo arm too.

  11. A signed black Strat? No, this will be no bargain. The closing is still a way out but as soon as it nears that price will soar; why? Because there are more than a few Gilmour guitar um… buffs (for lack of a better word but it really is not strong enough) that would kill (almost literally) for a signed Strat but a signed black Strat no less?

    So even given the sore economic times, this thing will sell for no less than $15,000 American, just my prediction anyway and it will probably go for a lot more.

    …and I’ll go ahead and just add if I had the money I would bid for it, you bet your… bottom dollar or pound or euro whatever the case may be.

    Thank you very much indeed, good night to you.

  12. OK, it’s for charity, OK, it’s a Strat, OK, it’s signed by Dave, but it’s just a custom relic’ed Strat, it’ll be bought with investment in mind, never played with the love it deserves, and some people have more money than sense. 🙁

  13. Interesting… I saw this earlier in the week. I notice that it appears to be just a black Strat… not The Black Strat (Signature Series). Note the lack of that tiny toggle switch and where is the tremelo arm?! The T&Cs even state that it “is in condition as donated”. I presume this is just a ‘Mexican’ with a black pick guard?

    Comments welcome from any real ‘Guitar Geek’ as I am only part time. 😉

  14. I think it’s a worthy cause and an auction is a great way to make money – “money, it’s a hit…” – and I have nothing against the rich at all. “One of these days” I would like to see a raffle. “All we have to do is keep talking” and find somebody to front the money for the Relic or NOS to begin with and I with I could, but “with, without, it can’t be helped but there’s a lot of it about.” I’m not without, but after 8 years of tyranny (IMHO), “no matter how he tried he could not break free” and “Wot’s… uh, the deal?” :)) :)) :))

    Anyway, I applaud those who would put such a fine instrument which has “the delicate sound of thunder” on the auction block for a “have a cigar, you’re gonna go far” cause. 😉

  15. That is a great idea and I know it will do quite well for the charity.

    However, that is a regular Strat, and not the David Gilmour signature guitar. Note the gold hardware (at least it looks gold in the pic), the regular maple neck without the vintage amber tint to it, as well as the lack of selector switch on the pickguard in the closeup. And the log on the headstock is the modern logo, unlike the Gilmour which is the 57 reissue logo.

    So it has already passed up the retail price on the guitar. Just for Gilmour’s personal signature itself (which is hard to come by), I predict it will go for somewhere between $5K and $8K. I do hope it goes for over 10K though.

  16. I agree with JJ, bidding will raise this Strat to 10 thousand or more.

    Many people have greenbacks out there and will spend it, while the rest of us wile in our sorrows.

    C’est la vie!

  17. Whatever guitar it is, it will end up on some rich man’s wall just for the signature.

    Who cares?

  18. I like Rudders’ black Strat in the Gallery. Why buy one when you can have more fun doing your own custom build? You’re only paying for the signature on a bog standard guitar, although we all want that signature!

    It would be better if Sony BMG donated the real Gilmour Strat to Musicians on Call. I’m quite angry that they didn’t. There will always be someone with the money to spend on something like this and I agree that it will end up hanging on a rich person’s wall.

    FEd, the new-look blog looks really great! You did a top job. I’ve been away and haven’t had any time to catch up on my favourite sites, but I like the look of the extra topics you’ve covered. I’ll need to spend some time recapping.

  19. Nice guitar. Good cause. But these days I’m not as optimistic about how much this auction will raise as in prior days.

    Fact is, many fat cats as they are being referred to are feeling the crunch. Remember, fat cats invest in the markets and the markets have gone way south. Also, many fat cats have been pinched in their wallets when in comes to compensation. Of course, their pinching may still feed a third world nation but remember that each person’s lifestyle is relative to their income.

    Therefore in these times of economic meltdown, the fat cats will be cutting back. Unfortunately when they cut back the ones that suffer will be the average worker as they won’t be buying their latte at Starbucks on a daily basis anymore. PLUS, unfortunately charities will also be suffering as for them it will be more important to maintain their own lifestyle than to help others.

    And that goes for corporations as well. If the profits aren’t coming in, then the donations will be cut back.

    Certainly sad but it is reality.

    I sure hope the price skyrockets to $25,000 but I will be surprised if it even breaks $10,000.



  20. I read on their site: “Musicians On Call uses music to promote and complement the healing process for patients, families and caregivers. ”

    Great cause.

    I also do believe, for example, that music therapy works for autism treatments for children , to calm them down, to make them sing, dance, play instruments, express and share feelings. It’s a great tool to help them communicate.

    I heard that 80/90% of autistic children respond posively to music as a motivator.

    Music therapy is effective for anyone, I think. I like this video and the quotes.


  21. Just checked the new EMI site, as featured on the DG greetings site, and it really is cool.

    Amid the 30th anniversary of the Wall, I am wondering if anything is being planned to celebrate that?

    1. That’s another £12 million well spent, then. :/

      366 pages! I wonder what other politically-correct tosh is contained within those expert guidelines.

    2. I wonder what other politically-correct tosh…

      I love it, FEd. Political correctness is the ruin of this country. Probably the ruin of rest of the world too. Down with political correctness. It has gone tooooooooooooooooooooooooo far.

      Whatever happened to good ol’ sticks and stones?

    3. Hmmmm… So evidently, children don’t dislike FOOD, they dislike the TRADITIONS and the PEOPLE from which some foods emerge.

      It’s an absurd assumption on the part of those researchers. As a guy who dislikes spicy foods myself, I’m offended that someone would use that fact to justify calling me “Racist.” I’m NOT a racist, I just don’t like curries and the like.

      Who dreams this stuff up? What next: Am I a Fascist because I wear a shirt and necktie at work four days a week?

    4. I’m thinking that perhaps I ought to make an urgent appointment to see a psychiatrist, because I’m suddenly concerned that I may be destined to plan an attack on Belgium just because I don’t like Brussels sprouts.

      Watch out, Ralph. I just don’t know if I can trust myself. 😉

    5. But I like Turkey and I don’t think I would like Turkey…

      I think they should definitely firebomb Iceland before Kerry Katona escapes…

      Oh dear, I need a lie down.

    6. What annoys me about this is that there is nothing wrong with “political correctness” – try “political incorrectness” on for size and I promise you it’s worse – but this kind of bollocks gives it a bad name and allows the arch conservatives (that would be the Telegraph by the way) to spray paint the the whole idea with their bile – which is another level of unpleasantness altogether.

      For sure educationalists should give appropriate guidance and direction on learned / copied racist attitudes – that’s obvious… but the point is that 40 years ago it was not “obvious” and very few people felt able to object to overt racist, sexist, homophobic attitudes… I know which era I prefer.

  22. Has anyone else heard about ‘Owen Brown heavy metal fan’? (Google his name and those words). He’s an 82 year old heavy metal fan. He’s just been on the evening news. Heavy metal bands have been sending him autographed albums, memorabilia and tickets to their concerts. He’s been invited to Download (whatever that is). 😉

    Anyway, my 80 year old father and mother are David Gilmour fans. (Fed, we need one of those emoticons with the innocent angelically looking upwards eyes here, please, if you have any.) :))

    ash X

  23. Hi FEd,

    This charity sounds like something really wonderful. Music is indeed a great aide in healing, especially emotionally and spiritually. Looking at some of the options the site has with max bidding, 10 minute ‘overtime’ bids and such, I expect the final bid to be quite a bit higher than it is now.

    As far as playing it, the signature is on the pickguard – change the pickguard, put the signed one in a safe place, and play the guitar. Or, get a Relic DG signature, put the signed pickguard on that (after putting some kind of hard clear-coat on it), and have a real one-of-a kind piece 8) – then have to worry about some jackwad stealing it.

    Regardless, I hope the auction is a huge success.

    Have a great weekend, all

  24. Amy is my 20 year old daughter. She has cerebral palsy, she can’t walk or talk and is blind.

    Music is a huge part of Amy’s life. She has favourites. When she was at school (special school) she benefited from music therapy. The school had instruments donated by Nordoff Robbins (thank you David) and staff went on their courses. The kids loved making music, making an impact on something in life. For our kids, who can barely move or interact with the world, anything that helps them join in and achieve is encouraged.

    Music therapy is used alongside the other therapies to help our children gain and maintain skills. By SKILLS, I mean something as simple as moving an arm. Because if you don’t move the arm, the muscles stop working and the tendons shorten. Then that limb will never move again because the joint will become fused and malformed. Lack of movement can have a detrimental effect on the whole body. So anything that keeps our children moving is vital.

    From what I can gather, people as profoundly affected as Amy didn’t used to make it to adulthood, but techniques and therapies are much better than they ever were. Music therapy is one more weapon in our arsenal.

    I’ve taken Amy to some concerts and fully intend to take her to more. She loves it.

    Sorry to just jump in, I’m a reader normally but I’m pleased that musicians give their time and energy. Thank you.

  25. I personally think that the economic woes will keep the masses (with a more concerted need to tighten their purse strings) from even sniffing at this guitar.

    However, having said that, those who are wealthy and do have the expendable funds will SPEND the money, probably be small(er) in number, and less inhibited to how much they will bid for it.

    Desire is a dangerous vice moreso when it comes to an auction where you’re trying to beat out the next person on an item you want. There’s an outside chance that fairly well off “bargain hunters” will hedge their bets in hopes of there being a paucity of bidders on this item to make the chances of winning the Strat better. Those savvy enough will wait until the last minute and “snipe(r)” the item within the last 10 seconds of the auction’s regulation time.

    My half centavo…. for what it’s worth….


  26. This guitar will undoubtedly fetch at least twice the price of the Signature Series DG Strat, which is OK, let someone else have it, I intend to play the one I buy, and it’s just a matter of time before I have an NOS, some have been gettable for as little as $2500, but, why is it that the Signature Series has NO signature? :!


  27. It’s a noble gesture and we are all glad to see David, once again, involved in such uplifting initiatives.

    I don’t think the crisis will affect the offers on this auction, a good Strat is valuable anyway and is a good investment.

    Good luck and may the winner wear it with honour.

  28. i think its a pity too that a lot of beautiful guitars get “hanged death” too. luckily i got a very strange “black” strat at mj guitars in munich from some guy who really put gold in the sound. the black looked like a pretty bad paintjob, the tremolo was broken. after i bought it “black mamba” gave me ours of spiritual kicks to play it, i have never before experienced this dialog with an instrument.

    however, i first stripped the neck from its paint which i always did with my guitars, if you play mostly one guitar and daily and use oil/wax regularly (like putting water to a plant) absolutely no problem. next job was to polish the black colour – however and strangely i had to find out that it was indeed a very good paintjob of a thin black layer over an original wooden strat.

    something is really special with it. as i’m not into money too much, i just enjoy it at the moment very much. i wouldn’t sell it for ANY price, because i’m happy with it. of course i let good friends experience it – not for more than an hour. 😉

    i like rory gallagher very much for his attitude for his one and only strat.

    greetings from munich and keep up the good work!

    thank you very much indeed for your inspiration

    philipp buntspecht

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