1957 Fender Stratocaster electric guitar & 1957 Fender Deluxe amp, single owner from 1957 – 2013, both purchased together in New York in early 1957.
1957 Fender Stratocaster electric guitar, made in USA, ser. no.-21317, two-tone sunburst finish with general age related wear, wear to fretboard, frets and various metal hardware, maple neck with pencil stamp 8-57, both tone pots reading 304723 for 1957 (unable to read volume pot number) electrics in working order, tweed case with red cushioned interior and Koylon foam cushioning label still intact, the case including tremolo arm, an original boxed Centralab 3-way switch switch, strings and original Fender Stratocaster catalogue listing and Stratocaster guitar tremolo adjustment instructions.
1957 Fender Deluxe amplifier, made in USA, date stamp GE, ser. no. D-03808, Jensen Alnico speaker, tweed casing, original dust cover
History – The life of this Fender Stratocaster started in early 1957 when Willard ‘Will’ Snide spotted it in the window of a music store in Plattsburg, New York. Being sixteen and dreaming of one day playing in his band ‘The Melody Boys’ with a real guitar instead of his old acoustic guitar, Will plotted a way to be able to buy this dream instrument. He was only able to come up with a small portion of the cost, se he approached his brother Reginald and asked to borrow the difference. Reggie did not hesitate and gave Will the money, who then ran back to the music store and bought his first and only electric guitar and amplifier. He really didn’t know it would one day become the classic Fender Stratocaster sought by many as the only true and pure sound of electric guitar.
Will was self-taught and never read music, but was able to play this Fender like he was born with a guitar in the womb. ‘The Melody Boys’ became a regionally followed 50s rock and roll band with gigs over the north country of New York and Montreal, Canada and hosted a weekly television show in Burlington, Vermont, after being discovered by Dusty Boyd, who had them as a guest on his show one Saturday. They enjoyed playing to many jam-packed lounges all over the area. Will thoroughly enjoyed his band and most of all, he loved his Fender – he could make it scream and shout!!!
In 1958 Will joined the United States Marine Corp and was stationed at Camp Lejeune in Jacksonville, North Carolina. He married his high school sweetheart, Shirley and they started their married life in Jacksonville.
One of his original band mates from ‘The Melody Boys’, Dean, joined the Marine Corp and was also stationed at Camp Lejeune, together they formed a band called ‘The Rockers’, again Will was the lead singer and Dean the drummer, they added three others and they too played for large crowds at the Officers and NCO clubs on base, as well as various lounges in the surrounding area. He left the Marine Corp in 1962 and ‘The Rockers’ disbanded at that time.
In 1964, Will formed another band and resurrected the name ‘The Rockers’. The other three members of the new band were local men who had never played a musical instrument in their lives. They bought drums, a bass and an acoustic guitar and with the help of the Fender, Will taught these men to play as if they were educated musicians. They went all around the surrounding area and played until 1970. They all began having children and with full time jobs and full time weekends, their lives became too full to play music. They could no longer keep up the hectic place and disbanded. That was the last band Will would ever play in.
Will put the Fender in the closet and only played it on special occasions for family and friends. Will passed away in 1997, leaving behind his Fender and the love of his life, Shirley. He was the only one who ever owned and played this Fender Stratocaster and it has been in the care of his widow since that day, leaving fond and exciting memories. It is truly a classic and Shirley wanted someone who has an appreciation of such a fine instrument to have it and carry on its legacy. The guitar was received from the family by the current owner 3 years ago.