“My current main guitar. It was light blue, but I’ve gradually hand-scraped the front’s finish off with a razor blade. Sacrilege? No... it was a refinish already.
"I always wanted a Strat but until I got this, I’d genuinely never even played one. Maybe it was those 80s formative years. Indie guitarists didn’t want to play Les Pauls, they were ‘too rock’... so I bought a Les Paul. And there were so many Strats around in the 80s, maybe I just consciously ignored Strats.
“It’s strange how I got into it. A few years ago, I broke my leg playing football, as stupid 40-year-olds do. I had to cancel all work, but that was okay, as I was getting bored with doing the same things and the sound of my ES-355 on everything I did. The same week, Bert (Jansch) died. I was laid on the sofa, thinking about everything I was doing. I had a proper mid-life crisis. I’d tried this Strat via the engineer at Konk (The Kinks’ Studio), who was selling guitars for a friend. I was laid up on the sofa just playing it and decided, ‘I want to buy it’.
“Mainly, I wanted to change the way I played guitar, just to see what would happen. It’s like changing shoes; you walk differently down the street. So while I was laid up on massive painkillers, I decided to get back into just playing guitar, and to do that, I bought this Strat.
“I have to work harder on a Strat. Gone was the Bigsby, the bassy reverb of my Gibsons, there’s less sustain. But it felt really simple, and that was a good thing. I had a sound in my head that was direct, wiry and less structured. And that’s what you hear with Trans.”