The Ten Best Electric guitars

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The Independent Culture

1 1950s Fender Stratocaster £1,005

The '54 Strat in red is an American icon up there with Harley Davidsons and Zippo lighters. The closest new guitar to it is their replica '57 Strat (pictured).

www.fender.co.uk; 01342 331 700

2 Gibson Les Paul Standard £1,850

The first Les Pauls appeared in 1952 and amplifiers started distorting all over the Western world. The guitar is played by Jimmy Page, Slash, Noel Gallagher and Madonna.

www.gibson.com; 00800 44 427 661

3 Rickenbacker 360/12 £1,199

A Texan by the name of George Beauchamp defined the sound of the Sixties when he came up with this beautiful 12-string guitar, which was made cool by The Byrds and Love.

www.dolphinmusic.com; 08708 409 060

4 Gretsch Electromatic £499

Gretsch has a new line of affordable Electromatics for those who want to emulate the tone of Lennon and Harrison without breaking the bank.

www.guitarandampshop.co.uk; 01243 868 666

5 Gibson 335 'Dot' Plainwood £2,230

Chuck Berry, Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan and John Lee Hooker, are just a few names from the list of legendary performers for whom the 335 is the instrument of choice.

www.rosetti.co.uk; 01376 550 033

6 Gibson SG Standard £1,250

It's lighter than a Les Paul but, with two humbucker pickups, this guitar is still a monster. It first appeared in 1961 and is available for as little as £800 from some dealers.

www.gibson.com; 01376 550 033

7 Fender Telecaster from £295

The classic Telecaster is thin, light and aggressive - like most of the people who play it - pushing the amplifier to overdrive in a bright but harmonious way.

www.dolphinmusic.co.uk; 08708 409 060

8 Epiphone 58 Korina Flying V £269

Epiphone have the highest build-quality of budget guitars. There is a range of guitars to chose from many of which are licensed Gibson copies. This Flying-V is a must.

www.epiphone.com; 01376 550 033

9 Danelectro Longhorn from £439

From 1958 Danelectro produced the Longhorn guitar and bass, non- conformist guitars with a great tone that became part of the sound of the era. They have now been reissued.

www.thinkmusic.co.uk; 08454 561 015

10 Modern Fender Stratocaster from £289

The Stratocaster is the best-selling guitar of all time and modern versions are designed to suit all budgets. Even a cheap Strat will last a lifetime. This year is Fender's 60th birthday.

www.dolphinmusic.co.uk; 08708 409 060

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