“This is the earliest known black Strat in existence. I first saw it when I was 11 years old – Guitar World featured it as the centerfold poster. I fell completely in love”: Joe Bonamassa on the guitar that represents his journey above all others

Joe Bonamassa with the first black Stratocaster ever made
(Image credit: Future)

A track I covered on my new album, Blues Deluxe Vol. 2, is I Want to Shout About It, originally recorded by one of my favorite guitarists, Ronnie Earl. Ronnie recorded the song with [Ronnie Earl &] the Broadcasters for their 1990 album, Peace of Mind

Ronnie plays in a traditional style that I refer to as “East Coast blues,” as exemplified by Ronnie, Duke Robillard and a few others. To me, it has a very specific vibe that’s predominantly a Fender Stratocaster sound. 

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Joe Bonamassa

Joe Bonamassa is one of the world’s most popular and successful blues-rock guitarists – not to mention a top producer and de facto ambassador of the blues (and of the guitar in general).