Fender have finally announced what many U2 fans have been waiting for years - a The Edge signature guitar! The Fender The Edge Stratocaster is a stunning new model which won't disappoint.
Even though The Edge is one of the most celebrated guitarists of the past 30 years, it's only now, in 2016, that we'll finally see the release of a The Edge signature guitar, thanks to Fender. This will be, without question, one of the hottest guitars to be released in 2016.
Why Fender? Why Strat? Why Now?
The Edge is more than a guitar hero - he's a true tone purist who goes through over 20 different guitars when on tour - often having one guitar for each different song! So why a The Edge Strat, and not, say, a signature Epiphone Casino, another of his favourite guitars? Or a Gibson Explorer, one of his trademark instruments, as used in the classic "I Will Follow"?
The main reason is that back in 2014, Bono and The Edge joined the Fender Board of Directors, and since then, it seems they've been building up to this moment, in the meantime releasing - perhaps surprisingly - Bono and Adam Clayton signature instruments, before a The Edge guitar!
First, Gretsch released two Bono signature guitars: The green, Irish Falcon guitar, and the stunning G5623 Electromatic RED Bono Signature Guitar, with part of the proceeds going to Bono's charity, RED:
Adam Clayton was the next U2 member to get a signature instrument. The Fender Adam Clayton Jazz Bass in Sherwood Green Metallic is a stunning bass, even if you're not an U2 fan!
So, it was just a matter of time until Fender decided to finally release a The Edge guitar. It's true that The Edge has used many guitars over the years, and still does, but no other model has so defined the classic The Edge (and therefore U2's) sound as the Fender Stratocaster - he used a '73 Strat on classic U2 songs such as "Gloria", "Sunday Bloody Sunday", "Where The Streets Have No Name" and many others. A Strat + Electro-Harmonix Deluxe Memory Man is pretty much The Edge's "formula":
Some fans hoped that a The Edge's signature guitar would be an all-black, maple neck Strat like his classic '73 "Where The Streets Have No Name" Strat - according to his guitar tech Dallas Schoo, it's still his second most important guitar, after all!
But for quite a few years, The Edge has also been playing a black Strat with white pickup guard, and the new Fender The Edge Strat is based on this model. In fact, The Edge has tested his new signature guitar live, during U2's current Innocence + Experience tour:
And because this guitar is being used live on the new tour (and presumably was also on their last record) it makes this new model quite special - it's not just a signature instrument, but a great memorabilia for U2 fans who also happen to play guitar! One of the songs where he seems to use his Fender The Edge Stratocaster is the new "Iris (Hold Me Close)"... check it out:
Of course, what matters most is: how good is the new Fender The Edge Strat? Well, pretty great by the looks of it! It's been designed in close collaboration between Fender and The Edge, and it's already his new constant companion, replacing his favored vintage Fender instruments onstage in arenas around the world. An innovative, supercharged instrument, the Edge Strat is engineered for top-notch performance with versatile tone and effortless playing feel.
A pair of special Custom Shop Fat 50s single-coil pickups with flat-staggered polepieces for personalized string response sits in the neck and middle position, cranking out versatile tone with enhanced bass response. A powerful DiMarzio® FS-1™ pickup inhabits the bridge position for added tonal balance, smoothing out the guitar’s response and boosting the output for arena-sized sound with clear articulation.
This new signature model is a classic Strat with modern appointments and, most important than all - the guitar YOU will buy is identical to the one The Edge plays onstage. And if that's good enough for a pro like The Edge, you can be sure you'll love it, too!
Fender The Edge Deluxe amp
The Edge is known to be a long-time user of the Vox Ac30. But if you've ever seen U2 live, you may have noticed he also use some small, Fender tweed amps... as many as the AC30s! So, fair to say they are pretty crucial to The Edge's tone, and the new Fender The Edge Deluxe amp is a welcome release for fans of the guitarist. Made to meet his specifications, the new amp looks and sounds totally classic, and even if you're not a major U2 fan, you may find a lot to enjoy when using one! Stunning!