In 1955, musician Howard Reed Jr. walked into the McCord Music Company of Dallas, Texas and ordered a Stratocaster®, with one special caveat—that it be black, instead of the standard 2-Color Sunburst. This request inadvertently made history, resulting in the creation of one of the earliest known black Stratocaster guitars and beginning a custom-color tradition that continues to this day. In 1958 Reed joined famous rockabilly group Gene Vincent and His Blue Caps, using his custom Strat onstage as his primary guitar. The sound of this black Stratocaster was heard all over Texas on “The Big D Jamboree”—a radio show on the local CBS affiliate.
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