The Electra, The Receipt, The Supercharger, The Eastern Star


It’s the purchase of which every guitar collector dreams: the owner drags it from under the bed and apologizes for the condition, but only the strings are rusty. The rest of it is virtually untouched. The strings might be original, even. And there’s a receipt from a small-town music store, complete with serial number and evidence of a $100 layaway payment.

Of course, the dream usually includes a 1959 Les Paul, not a 1983 Electra X185SS. I’m now the owner of three “Silverstone” (meaning “gold”) X185 models from 1983. Supposedly, they are rare, and indeed I’ve bought every one I’ve ever seen for sale. There’s something odd about them, however:

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