When Bon Jovi were in their pop-rock pomp, Richie Sambora could be found wailing his way round the stadiums of the world with his trusty Strat in hand.
The Bon Jovi guitarist has long been a Strat fan, even bagging two distinct Signature models in the '90s. You can see Sambora in action at Wembley Stadium below...
For a player who takes an eye-watering number of drool-worthy stage guitars and back-ups across the globe on every massive U2 tour, it’s perhaps surprising that David Evans, akaThe Edge, is associated with the Strat to any significant degree.
His ’76 Gibson Explorer and ’75 Les Paul have played their part on classic songs, but his ’73 black Strat is still the biggie; it’s the Where The Streets Have No Name guitar. And, unlike the others, he still tours with the original; it’s used for set staples Bad and I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For live, too.
“The maple neck on this guitar is so bright,” notes Edge’s long-time trusted tech Dallas Schoo. “This guitar through the AC30, with an old analog delay – that’s a magical combination. You give Edge those tools and he’ll take you places with them.”
There are few that can tap into the Stratocaster's inherent ability for glassy, graceful tone as Eric Johnson.
Kicking off the '90 with Grammy award winning single Cliffs Of Dover, he's gone on to become one of the most awe-inspiring Strat players, well, ever, showing off the versatility of Leo's finest design time and time again..
The 90s saw a new slew of guitar heroes emerge from the US, but only one was loyal to the Strat. “It was never a choice of, like, yeah, I want to play a Stratocaster,” Corgan said in an interview with Fender.
“I just got one, and when I played it, it suddenly brought alive what I was looking for in music.” The versatility of Corgan’s back catalogue is a testament to the Strat’s own adaptability, and in 2008 he was awarded his own signature guitar, modelled after his first Strat – a 1973 model.
During his tenure as Red Hot Chili Peppers axeman, Frusciante became a contemporary Strat icon thanks to a rich vocabulary of Hendrix- inspired chordal embellishments and fiery solos.
But while John’s first contributions can be heard on 1989’s Mother’s Milk, it wasn’t until Blood Sugar Sex Magik that his signature clean, compressed lines made their mark, most notably on riffy funkathon Give It Away and addiction ballad Under The Bridge.
Although funk was no longer the Chilis’ primary concern following Frusciante’s return in 1998, there are still plenty of stand-out Strat moments later on in the band’s career, from Scar Tissue’s sparse hybrid-picked intro to the snappy riffs of Can’t Stop and the Jimi-channelling solo in Dani California – John’s recent solo work, such as 2009’s The Empyrean, has its fair share of psychedelic Strat attacks, too.
Frusciante is famed for his collection of endlessly desirable guitars, but none more so than his ’casters – John’s favourite is an original ’62 Sunburst, but he also owns ’55 Sunburst and ’61 Fiesta Red models, fitted with Seymour Duncan SSL-1 pickups. We’re not jealous, honest.