Eric Clapton’s 1958 Gibson Korina Explorer

Eric purchased the guitar at the Alex Musical Instruments in New York in the early to mid-70s. [original source needed] It can be seen on photos taken during the ’74-’75 tour.

One unique feature on the guitar that attracted his attention was the shortened bass bout (the upper back horn). Clapton initially believed that this came as a result of the guitar being an original prototype, but that theory was eventually debunked and the guitar turned up to be modified by the previous owner. This allegedly made Clapton somewhat pissed, up to the point of trying to return the guitar to the store. [original source needed]

Nevertheless, he used this guitar on several songs from the album “E.C. Was Here” released in 1975. It is also most likely the guitar he was photographed with for the Music Man ad for HD-130 Reverb amplifiers in 1976. The photo was taken so that the sleeve on Eric’s shirt directly covers up the portion of the guitar that was cut off, so this is mostly just a guess.

We, unfortunately, couldn’t track down the current whereabouts of this guitar, but some sources point to the possibility of it being owned by a private collection in Japan. Possibly the same person who owns Duane Allman’s Gibson Les Paul Junior.

Leave a Reply

Photo and Image Files
Notify of


GroundGuitar counts on your criticism and feedback. In case you notice anything wrong with the information posted on this page, or you have knowledge of something that you would like to share, be sure to leave a comment above.

In case you want to talk to me privatly, please use the contact form and I will get back to you as soon as possible. (Dan)

go back to the Eric Clapton gear list