Potentiometer stamped "134 822X" (Centralab May/July 1982)
1. Letter from Danny Perkins, President of Backstage Distributions, dated July 4th 1998, stating how he was introduced to Eddie Van Halen and his personal guitar tech Zeke Clark, by Randy Bachman on August 20th, 1986…
"During my 20 years of acquiring rock and roll memorabilia for my personal collection, many Hard Rock Cafe worldwide locations, and the Guitar Hall of Fame’s 50 million dollar collection, I have certain favorite pieces. Edward Van Halen’s Kramer “Stryper” has been one of the top 10 pieces I have ever had the pleasure to own and play daily since 1988.
On August 20 1986 I met up with my old pal Randy Bachman who was opening up for the Van Halen 5150 tour. I was introduced to Edward Van Halen and his personal guitar tech Zeke Clark and shown his rig and guitars. There were several strypers some with 5150 painted on them and others without. Zeke mentioned that they were all handmade by Eddie at the Kramer factory in NJ. I asked several questions about the specs of the guitar and was shown one that had just split at the headstock the day before and was going to be returned to Kramer. I was also shown the back of the headstock of his main #1 guitar with the exact same damage, which had been repaired. Eddie had just given one of his guitars to Randy Bachman’s son in trade for a hat and later the two groups signed up as supporters for a new non-profit organization Bikers Against Drunk Drivers.
It wasn’t until a couple years later when the Kramer company had troubles that I was offered the very Kramer Stryper with the busted headstock I had seen backstage earlier, by James Paul DeCesare, Foreman of Assembly Kramer Music Products. I had a choice of several guitars that were at the plant for repairs etc., including the “Hot For Teacher” Kramer, but chose the road piece.
The serial number is C5150 and is one of only 5 made for the road. It cannot be confused from the promotion giveaway models (36) because of it’s straight headstock, 6 bolt backplate, and the pickup/bridge mounted directly to the body. Also exclusive is the RC network fitted to the volume pod to keep the tone even at all volumes.
I acquired the stage used Peavey 5150 amplifier directly from Jay Tashjian Analog Engineer of Peavey Sept 12 1996. The amp had been blown by Eddie on tour and replaced by the company. It still has Eddie Van Halen’s personal levels marked directly on the amp face as well as other notes with black marker and tape. The amp can be seen in Guitar World Magazine showing his entire rig.
Together these items make a historic display of one of the world’s top 3 guitar players of all time. While on display at my office at the Montreal Hard Rock Cafe, the guitar was played by many of the world’s top guitar players and entertainers.