What Guitar Did David Bowie Use?

How many times have you heard a band or performer say that they used a particular guitar or amp? Most likely, the answer is “none.” But it’s not because the guitar wasn’t good enough. It’s because the musician has a different set of criteria to evaluate their equipment.

For example, the tone of a guitar or amp can be a big factor for some musicians, while others look for a certain volume level or a particular amount of distortion. The same goes for amps. So, what kind of amp did David Bowie use?

of amp did

If you are looking for the guitar that Bowie played in the album stardust and the spiders, you should visit the Beatles Story Museum in Liverpool.

You would be surprised to know how many guitars can David Bowie play. In this post, we’ll get into more detail about the guitars of David Bowie.

Who was David Bowie?

David Bowie was an English rock singer most recognized for his dramatic musical transformations, such as his alter ego Ziggy Stardust. In 1996, he was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. In 1969, David Bowie’s first success was “Space Oddity.”

Bowie, the original pop chameleon, transformed into a fantasy sci-fi avatar for his breakthrough Ziggy Stardust album. Later, he co-wrote “Fame” with Carlos Alomar and John Lennon, which then became his first No. 1 song in the United States in 1975.

Mick Ronson is known as David Bowie’s guitarist due to his maximum performances with Bowie. Bowie was a talented actor who appeared in The Man Who Fell to Earth in 1976. On January 10, 2016, David Bowie died of cancer.

Fender Stratocaster
Fender Stratocaster
9.7/10
  • Brand: Fender
  • Color: Black
  • Top Material Type: Maple
Supro Dual Tone
Supro Dual Tone
9.5/10
  • Brand: Supro
  • Top Material Type: Maple
  • Body Material: Alder
Fender Player Telecaster
Fender Player Telecaster
9.1/10
  • Brand: Fender
  • Color: Butterscotch Blonde
  • Top Material Type: Maple

David Bowie Guitar

Before diving into the details, let’s look at the David Bowie Guitar he loved the most.

Fender Stratocaster Electric Guitar

Fender’s Starcaster range consists of relatively simple instruments. These are some of the cheapest Fender models available. The most noticeable qualities of this range are its affordability and simplistic style, making it easy to play guitar.

The Stratocaster is a full-size guitar with a 25-1/2″ scale and straightforward aesthetic style. The body is constructed of alder, double cut, flat, and painted black. The finish is high gloss.

The Fender Stratocaster is one of the most iconic electric guitars in the world. It was designed in 1952 by Leo Fender and was the first mass-produced electric guitar. Leo Fender had a dream to create an electric guitar that would have a great tone and sustain.

fender stratocaster

The Fender Stratocaster became a big hit in the 1950s and is still considered to be the best-selling electric guitar of all time. Fender has never stopped innovating and improving their instruments and continues to do so.

The Fender Stratocaster Electric Guitar is one of the most classic guitars ever made. This guitar has a wide range of players all over the world, with its unique sound and style. It comes with a chrome-plated steel bolt-on neck and body and a bone nut to help prevent slipping.

It also features a rosewood fingerboard with 24 jumbo frets and Pearloid dot inlays. The bridge saddle is a bone saddle with a nut made of plastic.

The guitar’s headstock is constructed of hard maple, and the nut and saddle are constructed of synthetic bone. A chrome-plated Fender® tuner and a black chrome pickguard round out the guitar’s aesthetic.

Top Guitars David Bowie Used

As a musical instrument, the guitar is a universal symbol of freedom, and it is often used to express one’s unique style and personality. It can be played in a variety of ways and has rich music and cultural history.

Here is the list of the guitars that David Bowie used, along with their descriptions:

1. Supro Dual Tone

David Bowie, the Guitarist, is an often-overlooked identity because Bowie is primarily renowned for his unusual singing stylings, songwriting, and amazing theatrics. But, if David Bowie’s career was a flurry of emotion and instinct, the guitar was his rock.

Supro is one of the first Rock & Roll music labels. The Dual Tone model, which was manufactured in Chicago from 1935 to 1968, was originally featured in Supro catalogs in the early 1950s.

With the Dual Tone design, you can choose the exact string gauge you want to start with. The body of the instrument is crafted of mahogany wood, which is easy to play and maintain. The maple fretboard offers a solid feel for your fingers, and the neck is made of maple.

supro dual tone

The Supro Dual Tone also features an adjustable bridge saddle that gives you the flexibility to change the action on your guitar.

This Dual Tone guitar has a 24 34″ scale maple neck, a Pau Ferro fretboard, and set-neck construction. It features a mahogany body with a stomach cut for added comfort when playing. It also has an ergonomic neck joint that allows full access to the upper frets.

Bowie even picked “Rumble” as a musical interlude during the Reality Tour as a tribute to Link Wray. Clearly, Link Wray’s rock and roll mythos and his passion for Supro guitars had an indelible mark on David Bowie.

2. Fender Player Telecaster Electric Guitar

During the 1976 Isolar tour, David Bowie used a substantially modified version of the natural finish Fender Telecaster guitar shown above. The bridge pickup was standard, the middle pickup was the single coil, and the neck pickup was humbucker. It also has three knobs and three distinct tiny switches rather than a regular three-way switch.

This guitar was capable of producing Bowie’s electric sound, which was frequently extensively synthetic and sophisticated. The Telecaster, or Fender Telecaster, is the world’s first commercially successful solid-body electric guitar. Its straightforward design and ground-breaking tone have raised the bar in electric guitar manufacture and popular music.

fender player

The maple neck features a 22 medium jumbo fret and a 12.75″ radius rosewood fingerboard. The body is made of alder wood. Its sleek new profile features a modern ‘C’ shape and a more contoured body for a better fit.

Alder body and maple neck provide a rich, warm tone. And a new maple fretboard adds even more sustain. The result is a guitar that’s comfortable to play, easy to carry, and ready to rock.

3. Guild 12-String F-512

David Bowie is known to have a specific fondness for acoustic guitars, and in 1971 he toured the United States with a Guild 12-String acoustic guitar.

Bowies Guild guitar is hardly recognized; he was only sighted playing it on his first US tour. However, if you poll Guild aficionados, the F-512 is the model most likely to be cited.

This Guild F-512 croons like the legendary model it is, with a solid Sitka spruce top and Indian rosewood back and sides. The Adirondack spruce bracing gives this F-512 tremendous projection and volume, as well as dazzling highs, lush mids, and inviting, concentrated bass response.

guild 12

The Guild F-512 12 String is a highly resonant acoustic instrument featuring a single-cutaway body, a classic design made popular by Jimi Hendrix, along with an F-hole that allows for increased volume and projection.

The F-512 is a new model in the Guild F-family that features a more refined sound and a deeper bass. The 12-string Guild F-512 has a beautiful, natural tone and is the perfect instrument for the player seeking a distinctive and powerful sound.

With a deep cutaway, the F-512 is a unique instrument with a wide range of tonal options, providing easy access to every note on the fingerboard. The Ebony fretboard features a straight grain with no reliefs, while the Maple neck has a slightly concave profile and is bound with a traditional saddle.

The F-512 also features the Guild logo on the pickguard and fingerboard edges, which further adds to the instrument’s authentic look. It has a bolt-on neck joint, a rosewood bridge, and an ebony nut. The Guild F-512 comes with 1-3/4″ tuners, a hardshell gig bag, and a nylon pickup case.

The F-512 has a 24″ scale and weighs just 14.4 lbs. This guitar has a very thin body depth, which allows it to fit easily in a travel bag. A great choice for stage or studio, the Guild 12-String F-512 Guitar will appeal to those who prefer the traditional style and solid tone.

4. Fender Jaguar

The Fender Jaguar Electric Guitar is the classic model in Fender’s electric guitar line. This guitar features a traditional hollow-body design and is a great entry-level instrument.

Its distinctive and warm tonal characteristics allow the player to achieve a wide variety of tones and styles of music. The Fender Jaguar Electric Guitar is a great choice for players looking to expand their musical horizons.

The Jaguar model of Fender guitars combines classical and jazz elements and has a simple appearance that perfectly reflects a free spirit. The sound of this guitar is mellow and smooth, and its unique voice makes it a worthy choice for soloists and professionals.

fender american

The Fender Jaguar guitar was first introduced in 1960 as a bass guitar. It was a very versatile instrument used in many music styles, including rock, blues, jazz, country, and folk.

This guitar is the perfect example of the “early 70’s” Fender sound. With its vintage styling and timeless feel, the Fender Jaguar brings a nostalgic tone to the modern musician. The Jaguar has been a fan favorite since it first hit the scene.

The classic Jaguar design combined with the innovative features of the era includes the floating tremolo system and two pickup configurations.

The vintage Jaguar features a solid alder body and maple neck, which are great for the sound and feel of the instrument.

The solid wood neck provides great stability, and the floating tremolo offers a unique feel that will satisfy players who love the vintage tone. The floating tremolo adds a great deal of flexibility, as well as an amazing tone to your guitar.

This model is equipped with Fender’s original vintage electronics, including the lead circuit volume, tone and rhythm circuit volume, and tone switches. In 1973 Fender made a major change to the Jaguar body shape and added a pair of humbucking pickups and a bridge humbucker.

5. Espana 12-string acoustic

Espana, a premium guitar brand based in Finland, specializes in acoustic guitars. Since their establishment in the 1960s, Espana has continued to innovate and evolve, producing a full range of high-quality guitars, with a particular focus on acoustic guitar production. Their products are renowned for high build quality, and guitarists around the world have recognized their innovative designs.

Espana’s 12-string acoustic guitar has a sleek, modern, and powerful look. It has a mahogany body, a classic profile, and a stunning rosewood neck. This Dean 12-string features an all-mahogany bridge and a set of custom Dean Duncan saddles.

dean 6 string

There is a vintage single volume and tone controls on the top of the instrument, along with a 4-way pickup selector switch and a master volume knob. This Dean guitar is also equipped with a Duncan-designed Humbucker pickup system. The Espana 12-string acoustic guitar from Dean has a warm mahogany body, an ebony fingerboard, and a neck.

The guitar comes with a pre-installed Dean Vibrola tremolo bridge with a locking system. The instrument is set up for A, D, E, G, C, and F. The headstock features a 24 fret scale length with a 25.6″ body length. It has a larger headstock to allow easier access to the tuning keys, an improved tuner system, and improved soundboard treatment.

It has a mahogany neck which was selected due to its ability to resist moisture and has a natural, aged appearance. The mahogany body is finished in natural oil, and this model is available in Ebony or Rosewood fretboard with a Black pickguard.

The flat top shape offers a wide soundstage and great projection, and the fingerboard is a comfortable and playable size for all fingers. This instrument features 24 jumbo frets and a nickel silver nut.

6. Gibson Flying V Electric Guitar

Flying V was one of Gibson’s most iconic models in the 1960s, and the 1968 Gibson Flying V continues that tradition with a classic mahogany body with a classic rosewood fingerboard, a set of “Hot” 496R and 500T humbucker pickups with independent volume control, a Tune-O-Matic bridge with a vibrato arm and a Floyd Rose tremolo tailpiece.

It also features Gibson’s “Cool” Control neck profile with a deep-set nut and a single-ply binding on the lower edge of the fretboard. The 1968 Gibson Flying V features an amazing combination of traditional craftsmanship and modern design.

This iconic electric guitar combines a wide selection of classic Gibson pickups, including a pair of custom-wound “hot” humbucking single coils, two standard single coils, and a pair of P-90 single coils.

gibson flying v

This guitar features a classic Flying V body shape, which gives it a slightly fuller and more rounded profile than other guitars of the same era. These guitars were manufactured in the early ’70s and are in high demand today because they are very affordable.

It’s a fantastic rock’n’roll guitar, and I don’t see why you couldn’t use it in other forms as well – performers as disparate as Albert King and Michael Schenker have both used Gibson Flying-Vs.

The Flying-V model may not be for everyone because the body form feels extremely different than others, and playing while sitting down may be difficult for certain individuals.

Amplifier and Microphone Used By David Bowie

Every time David Bowie played the guitar, he used several other accessories for great tonal settings. Now, it’s time to have a look at the microphones and guitar amps used by Bowie.

Supro 1624T Dual-Tone 24 Watt Amp

The Supro 1624T is the classic rock amp that will make every guitarist dream. With its powerful 24-watt tube power section and large, warm-sounding speaker, the 1624T makes an ideal power amp for the lead player or the rhythm guitarist in a classic rock band. And its great clean tone and high headroom give it an all-around versatility for players of all styles.

The 1624T is a single channel amp that can drive a 6L6 or 6V6 combination as well as a 12AT7 or 12AX7. The amp’s dual tone capability and unique switchable tremolo give it an extra dimension of versatility and tonal character.

 The Supro 1624T dual-tone 1×12 combo amplifier is the undeniable rock star of the mid-’60s Supro amplifier lineup. This 1624T amp is the first model of its kind to feature 1×12 speaker cabinets.

supro 1624t

It’s capable of handling massive amounts of power while retaining clean, natural sounds and precise articulation, and it is perfectly balanced for tube or solid-state amplifiers.

There’s a lot more to this amp than meets the eye. The Supro 1624T has a dual-channel circuit, which allows you to switch between the two channels by simply turning the volume control. It has a clean channel with 2 12AX7’s and a crunchy channel with 2 6L6.

The tone control works really well with the clean channel, and the gain works well with the crunch channel.

There are five knobs: Volume, Tone, Speed, Depth, and a toggle for effect control. The footswitch control allows you to turn the amp on and off and toggle between the clean and crunch. The controls are really easy to access and work well.

Shure Beta 58A Vocal Microphone

The Shure Beta 58A is a high-output super-cardioid dynamic vocal microphone designed for professional sound reinforcement and project studio recording. This ensures high gain before feedback, maximum isolation from other sound sources, and minimum off-axis tone coloration.

The Beta 58A has a shaped frequency response that is ideal for the performance of most vocals. This high-quality Microphone offers clear sound with no background noise. Whether you are a singer, actor, producer, musician, or director, the Shure Beta 58A is a valuable tool for capturing sound.

shure beta 58a

It features a super-cardioid dynamic vocal microphone with a cardioid pickup pattern that reduces off-axis feedback while maintaining clarity and excellent rejection of low-frequency sound. With a unidirectional polar pattern, the Shure Beta 58A captures only the sound coming from in front of it, with no ambient sounds picked up.

The Shure Beta 58A also has an adjustable stand and a storage bag for safekeeping. The Beta 58A has a shaped frequency response that is ideal for live vocal reinforcement. It has become a leading choice among vocalists and touring professionals worldwide. The Beta 58A maintains a true super cardioid pattern throughout its frequency range.

This ensures high gain before feedback, maximum isolation from other sound sources, and minimum off-axis tone coloration. This super cardioid dynamic mic is also a great studio tool for voiceover or spoken word applications.

Frequently Asked Questions

In this section, we will answer a few FAQs to clear your mind further.

Who is David Bowie?

David Bowie is an English singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, actor, and producer. He is known for his eclectic musical style, often called “Space Oddity” (1969). He is one of the best-selling artists of all time, having sold over 200 million records worldwide.

Was David Bowie good at guitar?

He will not be remembered as the most technically gifted player in history, but he will be remembered as one of the most influential. He was mostly a vocalist and entertainer. He wasn’t quite comfortable in the studio performing difficult guitar parts, but he was perfectly competent in playing rhythmically and pretty much everything in his tunes.

What is the story behind the song “Young Americans”?

“Young Americans” is a song by David Bowie. The song is about the generation gap between young and old Americans. Young people have different ideas of what they should be doing than older people do. Older people think young people just don’t care about the future.

Why did David Bowie not use his real name?

At the time, another singer gaining popularity in Britain was Davy Jones, who went on to become the leader of The Monkees but never achieved the kind of stardom that David Bowie attained.

What kind of guitar did David Bowie use?

He used a lot of guitars, including Fender Stratocaster, Fender Telecaster, Guild f512 and Gibson Flying V, etc.

Conclusion

David Bowie was an English rock singer most recognized for his dramatic musical transformations, such as his alter ego Ziggy Stardust. On January 10, 2016, David Bowie died of cancer. This article talked about some of the best guitars that David Bowie used. We have also included an amplifier and a microphone that this legendary artist used.

dvid bowie chi

He used plenty of versatile guitars; however, some of the most prominent ones are Fender Stratocaster, Fender Telecaster, Guild f512, and Gibson flying V. These are mentioned above with their descriptions.

David always gifted a signed bowie guitar to any of his fans at some show. Bowie played with famous guitarist Mick Ronson, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Iggy Pop, and Major Tom.

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