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SurfGuitar101 Forums » Gear »

Permalink Eddie Bertrand's '63 Strat is now for sale

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I have no vested interest in this sale, but it's too cool not to post about here.

Posted on Facebook today from Davidson's Well Strung Guitars
in Farmingdale, New York:

We cannot impress upon you enough how special today’s guitar is, or how awestruck and lucky we feel to hold it in our hands. This is Eddie Bertrand’s 1963 Stratocaster in a Sparkle “Burst” finish. Eddie was a pioneer of surf music, playing in multiple groups - Eddie and The Showmen, The Bel-Airs, and most notably: The Challengers. There is a great Facebook page for The Challengers Band, and on it they recount many stories from different performances. They played with Chuck Berry, Debbie Reynolds, and The Queen of Surf, Kathy Marshall. Lots of great pictures too, go check it out if you're interested!
When it comes to this Stratocaster, there is great provenance that comes with it. In the spirit of surf music, Bertrand ordered this Strat because he was inspired by the look of the “Surfburst” offsets popular at the time. He still wanted the look of a Sunburst Strat, but with sparkle. To create this finish, the body was essentially painted silver, topped with a metallic flake and sparse copper glitter, then bursted with black. Over time this piece has aged from years of being played, really affecting the look of the sparkle. You can see it looks pretty green in the center, a color that Silver turns when the clear yellows. The pearlescent silver that once shined under stage lights has almost gone flat, but you can mostly see in areas of wear around the body that the silver is still present underneath. The copper glitter is so fine, you can really see it in person with the naked eye but it is a sight to behold in the right lighting. We can see why all the photos of the guitar under stage lighting look so good! The guitar exhibits quite a bit of wear and tear, as most great playing guitars should. It has a wonderfully thick neck for 1963, and a nicely balanced trio of original single coils. This guitar is a thrill to play, and on top of that an incredible piece of history.
This Strat is for sale now, so contact us for more info. 516-221-0563


Last edited: May 20, 2022 15:35:23



Wow, who wants to pony up for some real surf history?


That is insanely cool… i wonder how much?

has anybody called?

“it belongs in a museum”

This is really funny. For years, this guitar was being presented as Larry Robbins, the sax player for The surf band The Blazers custom built guitar. I think it was Ivan, and me (me, Chris Fesker) who sort of deduced that the guitar was, in fact Eddie Bertrands.

Heres the conversation.

I contacted that article writer, Rick King and sort of told him what we thought. He said he had sold the guitar.

Now, they are presenting it as Eddie B's, with provanence.

I 100% believe Ivan and I are correct. This is Eddie Bertands Sparkle Burst Strat. You're welcome, Well strung Guitars.

"You can't tell where you're going if you don't know where you've been"

A real-deal holy grail of surf. What's going on with the tape over the bridge cover?

I messaged well strung guitars, and got a nice note back. He was the curator of the Songbird museum, and currently has all the guitars from the museum in his store.

He said he bought it in 2014, after the Rick King article claiming it was Larry Robbin's guitar. He showed the guitar to Randy Nauert, of the Challengers, and Randy confirmed it was Eddie Bertrand's. Thats good enough for me.

I followed up with a price query, so far no response.

"You can't tell where you're going if you don't know where you've been"

The guitar is featured in the August issue of 'Guitarist':


Los Apollos - cinematic surf music trio (Berlin)
"Postcards from the Scrapyard" Vol. 1, 2 & 3 NOW available on various platforms!
"Chaos at the Lobster Lounge" available as LP and download on Surf Cookie Records!

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