John Mayer’s PRS Silver Sky

access_time First seen circa 2018

John started using this guitar in early 2018. It has been developed as a close collaboration between Mayer and Paul Reed Smith, the main goal being designing an instrument that would be a future of the classic design, taking inspiration mainly from early 60s Strat models which John is known to favor.

It’s been a dream of mine for years to design a guitar that includes some of my favorite vintage specifications but with a modern spirit and aesthetic. After two years of study and refinement, the Silver Sky is my vision of what a reboot of the electric guitar should look and feel like. [John Mayer, Silver Sky Signature Model]

The PRS Silver Sky features a 22 fret maple neck (22.5″ scale) with rosewood fretboard radiused at 7.25″ – identical to vintage Strat models, as opposed to 9.5″ or even 12″, which are way flatter and usually more common on modern guitars. Body is made of alder wood, and houses three single coil pickups, again – custom-design as a collaboration between Mayer and Smith dubbed the 635JMs. The pickups are only available in this model, and it is highly unlikely that they would become available for purchase separately.

If you’re interested in more details about this guitar from the man himself, and you have 40 minutes to spare, be sure to watch the video below. It originates from John’s live stream from his personal Instagram profile, and John goes into details regarding the guitar’s sound, design choices, influences, and demos the guitar through a Fender Deluxe amp, and his own signature amp from PRS, a J-MOD 100.

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access_time 2004

2004 Fender Black One Stratocaster

This is perhaps the guitar that John is most often associated with, at least during his most popular years. It was built by Fender Custom Shop master-builder John Cruz in Corona, California in late 2004 – with direct input from John, who also participated in some of the handworks. The guitar was delivered to Mayer in November 2004. I had just gotten of a tour, and was just starting the get crazies from the […]

access_time 1994

1990s Squier Stratocaster

This was John’s first ever electric guitar, acquired and used most likely sometime between 1991 and 1993. Prior to this, John was using an acoustic guitar which was rented from a local guitar shop, although there might have been a couple of more acoustic guitars going through his hands before he eventually acquired this Squier. [John Mayer: Someday I’ll Fly] My first electric guitar was a Squier, so I’ve kind of […]

access_time 1996

1996 Fender SRV Stratocaster

John acquired this Stevie Ray Vaughan Signature Stratocaster in 1996, trading it for a Takamine 12-string acoustic and a Mesa Boogie distortion pedal, and paying the difference from the money he made working at a gas station. He used the guitar for bedroom practice in the early years, and during the two semesters spent at the Berklee College of Music in Boston. This one I bought from the money I […]

access_time 2005

1963/64 Fender Stratocaster

John acquired this guitar sometime prior to the Continuum album (mid to late 2005), and used it on at least one song during the studio sessions (see quote below), but at the time of writing this, it is unknown which one in particular (if you happen to have any information regarding this, please be sure to get in contact). From then on, the guitar remained behind the scenes for the most part until just prior to […]

access_time 1994

1990s Fender/Squier Stratocaster

John was first seen using this guitar sometime in the summer of 1994. At that time, he was playing in a band called ‘Another Roadside Attraction’ [John Mayer: Someday I’ll Fly – 3:35]. The guitar likely directly replaced the black Squier that John played prior to this. What’s particularly interesting about this guitar is that, based on the photos, in 1994 it had a maple neck, while later on in […]

access_time 2003

1960s Fender Stratocaster (Heavier Things)

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access_time 2003

Fender Monterey Stratocaster

John started using this guitar sometime towards late 2003. One of the earlier appearances of the guitar was on December 30, 2003, on Late Night With Conan O’Brien, when John played a set with Buddy Guy and Double Trouble. The guitar was subsequently used on the 46th Annual Grammy Awards show on February 6th, various dates throughout the 2004 tour in support of the Heavier Things album, as well as on many different dates throughout the John Mayer […]

access_time 2005

Fender Custom Shop John Cruz 1962 Relic Stratocaster

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access_time 2007

Fender Reverse Proto Stratocaster

This guitar was used by John during the 2005 John Mayer Trio tour. It was also used on some later dates, including Mayer’s performance at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles, California on December 8, 2007, which was eventually released as a live DVD album ‘Where the Light Is’ [Where The Light Is: John Mayer Live In Los Angeles] Embed from Getty Images What’s interesting about this guitar is that John’s Reverse Proto […]

access_time 2004

2004 Fender SRV “Number One” Tribute Strat

John acquired this guitar sometime in early to mid-2004, presumably right after it first became available. The guitar was introduced in January 2004 at the Winter NAMM, and since it was only produced in 100 pieces, it was sold at the authorized Fender dealers who were chosen on a lottery basis. The guitar was designed and built by John Cruz (who later worked on John’s BLK1), and was the exact replica of the Stratocaster […]

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