Watch Jeff Beck perform Link Wray’s rock ’n’ roll classic Rumble on a Fender American Vintage II 1957 Stratocaster

There are gear demo videos and there are gear demo videos in which a former Yardbird and bona-fide guitar legend take an electric guitar and put it through its paces with one of the most iconic tracks in rock ’n’ roll history. 

Jeff Beck on a Seafoam Green Fender American Vintage II Stratocaster is the latter, and it really is remarkable footage – a bit of Friday night six-string inspiration head of 'Straturday' and, hopefully for all of us, an uninterrupted weekend of guitar playing.

Kudos to the Fender production team for maxing the budget on a well-lit stage that brings out that Seafoam Green in all its glory, and makes Beck look as he really is when you think of it, a man whose talent on the instrument is not of this Earth.

The tone on this rendition of Link Wray’s Rumble is reference quality, a scratchy Strat bite treble that screams ‘Add to cart’, but should come with the caveat that not all players can make a Strat sing like this, not matter how well put together it is.

Fender American Vintage II Series

(Image credit: Fender)

The American Vintage II Series, as the name suggests, sees Fender digging through the archive to reproduce some choice models as per their original specs – an upscale and more retro-accurate US-built analogue to what it is presently doing with the Mexican-built Vintera range.

It comprises the 1957 Strat, as wielded by Beck, Strats from ’61 and ’73, Telecasters from 1951 and 1963, a Thinline Tele from ’72, a Telecaster Deluxe from 1975 – enter the CuNiFe – and a 1977 Telecaster Custom. A 1966 Jazzmaster, 1954 and ’60 Precision Basses and a 1966 Jazz Bass round out the collection. 

And when we say “from” said year, that is to say that Fender, in, Executive Vice President of Product, FMIC, Justin Norvell’s words, is making a “near 1:1 comparison with their original predecessors”. 

You can read more about the American Vintage II Series here. You can find out more at Fender. And you can watch and listen to how good the ’57 Strat will sound once you learn how to play like Mr Jeff Beck above.

Jonathan Horsley

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.