Eric Clapton’s 1954 ‘Slowhand’ Stratocaster is up for auction

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Eric Clapton’s 1954 ‘Slowhand’ Stratocaster is up for auction

Words by Will Brewster

With an eye-watering opening price of $1m USD.

A 1954 Fender Stratocaster played by Eric Clapton throughout the 1970s and 1980s is set to go under the hammer later this month, with punters expecting it to go down as one of the most expensive guitars of all time.

The guitar, nicknamed ‘Slowhand’ by Clapton and his fans, is a rare hardtail model from Fender’s first year production run of Stratocasters, and boasts a serial number of 7431.

Clapton is said to have used the guitar extensively up until 1985, tuning the instrument to open G to use as a slide guitar for ‘Tusla Time’ and ‘Early In The Morning.’

All appointments on the guitar look to be original except for an added five-way pickup selector switch, which allowed for Clapton to achieve those out-of-phase second and fourth tones that helped to define his Stratocaster sound.

Elsewhere, the ‘Slowhand’ guitar comes with a signed letter of authenticity from Lee Dickson, Clapton’s longtime guitar technician, as well as a signed gold edition of his Slowhand album, a strap and other assorted case candy.

If you’re keen to take a punt, head on over to Gotta Have Rock and Roll for more details on the auction. Bidding opens tomorrow (Wednesday November 25), with the guitar expected to snag a total sum between $1.5m – $2m USD (or $2m – $2.7m in Aussie dollary-doos).

Check out Gotta Have Rock and Roll for all the details on the ‘Slowhand’ auction today.