Sixty years of plucking the Rickenbacker 4000

Rickenbacker 4000 headstock @ SHG30

They say that a musical instrument, as the weapon of choice, can make or break the musician playing on it. Throughout the history, we had musical instruments that were groundbreaking in their way. The cult of musical equipment is especially strong in the rock music. There is a vast variety of guitars, bass guitars, drums, keyboards, amplifiers and everything else that is needed by one rock/heavy-metal band.

So, the legends were born: Fender Stratocaster, played by Jeff Beck, Ritchie Blackmore, Eric Clapton, Ry Cooder, John Frusciante, Jimi Hendrix, Gibson Les Paul played by Jimmy Page, Slash, Joe Perry, Pete Townshend. Then we have custom-made guitars, like Brian May‘s Red Special…

But, what about the bass guitars? There is a great choice there as well. But, one of the more interesting ones is the 4000 Series by Rickenbacker. It’s an awesome one for many reasons. First, it was the first bass guitar produced by Rickenbacker; second, Lemmy Kilmister played one of those (a variation of it, at least); third, but not least significant is that the production of this bass guitar begun in 1957. So, this year marks its 60th anniversary. And some jubilee it is.

However, The Rickenbacker 4001, which is considered the “deluxe’ version of the 4000 model, picked up all the glory. It was played by Cliff Burton, Geddy Lee, Barry Adamson, Geezer Butler, Roger Glover, Kim Gordon, Roger Waters

OK, this is not the 4000 model, but nevertheless, it’s a tribute to Rickenbacker. Talking about The Beatles, they actually made the brand truly famous, with Lennon playing the Rickenbacker 325 Capri on the band’s Ed Sullivan debut gig. Harrison and McCartney loved it too (McCartney using a left-handed version, as shown in the video above).

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As we said before, there are instruments that belong to the history of rock. Rickenbacker 4000 series is definitely one of them.

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