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Watch Nita Strauss shred onstage using Jason Becker’s original prototype Peavey Numbers guitar

Nita Strauss (left) and Jason Becker
(Image credit: Nita Strauss/Instagram)

Last night (September 21), Alice Cooper and his band – which features electric guitar hero Nita Strauss – played at the Leader Bank Pavilion in Boston, Massachusetts. 

For the group's encore performance of Cooper's anti-authority anthem School's Out, Strauss – rather than her Ibanez JIVA10 signature guitar – elected to use a different, very significant guitar instead, Jason Becker's original prototype Peavey 'Numbers' model. 

Used by Becker – whose 30-year struggle with ALS (also known as Lou Gehrig's Disease) has robbed him of the ability to play guitar, walk, talk and breathe on his own – to record his songs River of Longing and End of the Beginning, and played by Eddie Van Halen during a visit to Becker’s home in 1996, the one-of-a-kind guitar was recently sold at auction for $65,000.

You can see Strauss take School's Out's rabble-rousing solo with the custom Peavey below.

"It’s taken me 12 hours to find the words," Strauss wrote on Instagram of the experience. "What an incredible honor and a privilege it was to get to play Jason Becker's original Numbers guitar on stage for a song last night. 

"This guitar truly has Jason’s magic in it – I felt like I couldn’t miss a note if I tried! I was in tears walking off the stage thinking what that moment meant. I don’t know when that guitar was last used on stage! But I am so grateful to have had this opportunity.

"Jason told Josh [presumably Josh Villalta, Strauss's boyfriend] and I years ago that he wanted his guitars to continue being played," Strauss continued. "At the time I was struck by how unselfish that thought was – there was no sense of bitterness, just that same joy and love of guitar that we all associate with Jason and his playing.

"Now that I’ve played it a couple times – I get it. I do."

Earlier this year, Strauss played a prominent role in a massive virtual Jason Becker fundraiser, set up to assist the guitarist with his significant medical costs.

As part of the initiative, which included a live fundraising event on DragonForce guitarist Herman Li's Twitch channel, Polyphia guitar maestro Tim Henson also got the chance to play Becker's Numbers guitar, using it for a rare display of his improvisational prowess

Jackson Maxwell

Jackson is an Associate Editor at guitarworld.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.