What Kind of Guitar Did Prince Play?

What Kind of Guitar Did Prince Play?

Unveiling the enigmatic world of Prince’s guitar collection is like stepping into a musical realm where inspiration and innovation reign supreme. As one of the most revered and celebrated musicians of all time, Prince’s dedication to his craft went far beyond just his mesmerizing melodies and electrifying performances. Behind closed doors, this musical genius created a secret sanctuary of strings, where each guitar bore witness to his endless quest for sonic perfection. So, if you’ve ever wondered what kind of guitar Prince played and yearned to know his musical secrets, then read this article and go through the hidden chambers of his musical kingdom.

Who is Prince?

Prince Rogers Nelson, known simply as Prince, was an American singer, songwriter, musician and actor. He was born on June 7th, 1958 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Prince was a pioneer of the Minneapolis sound – a blend of funk, rock and pop music that he popularized in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Who is Prince?

His Music

Throughout his extraordinary career, the iconic musician Prince captivated the world with his unparalleled talent, releasing an impressive collection of 39 studio albums, four live albums, five compilation albums, and 17 video albums. Renowned for his boundary-pushing and innovative approach to music production, Prince’s eclectic sound became a hallmark of his artistry. From the very start of his musical journey, he garnered immense praise for his remarkable ability to effortlessly blend multiple genres, creating a unique and captivating musical experience for his listeners.

Musical Influences

Prince, the legendary musician, drew from a wide range of musical influences that shaped his unique sound. Deeply rooted in funk, he found inspiration in the electrifying performances of James Brown, the infectious grooves of Sly and the Family Stone, and the innovative funkadelic style of George Clinton. Prince’s love for rock music was evident in his guitar prowess, influenced by the legendary Jimi Hendrix and the iconic sounds of Led Zeppelin. Additionally, his pop sensibilities were evident, with shades of influence from the incomparable Michael Jackson. It is this rich tapestry of musical inspiration that contributed to Prince’s groundbreaking and timeless artistry.

His Impact on Pop Culture

Prince’s impact on pop culture is truly monumental and cannot be overstated. With his unique and flamboyant style, he not only captivated audiences but also challenged societal norms and pushed the boundaries of what was considered acceptable in mainstream music. His provocative lyrics and dynamic stage presence made him a true trailblazer, inspiring countless artists to break free from traditional industry constraints and express themselves freely. Prince’s influence goes far beyond his own music, as he paved the way for a new era of artistic freedom and creativity in the industry. His legacy as an icon of individuality and innovation will continue to inspire and resonate for generations to come.

His Impact on Pop Culture


Prince, the iconic musician, was not without controversy throughout his illustrious career. In 1993, he shocked the world by changing his name to an unpronounceable symbol, a unique expression of his artistic vision. This bold move sparked a conversation about creative control and artistic freedom in the music industry. Throughout his ongoing battle with his record label, Prince demonstrated unwavering determination and unwavering commitment to his craft. He fearlessly stayed true to himself and created music that not only pushed boundaries but also deeply resonated with his fans. His ability to navigate through controversy and stay authentic is a testament to his enduring legacy as a true musical genius.

His Legacy

Prince’s legacy extends far beyond his music. As a true trailblazer in the music industry, he revolutionized the way artists express themselves and pushed the boundaries of creativity. His fearlessness and relentless pursuit of artistic excellence inspired countless musicians to embrace their individuality and challenge societal norms.

Prince’s influence can still be heard in the music of today, as his innovative sound continues to inspire new generations of artists. His impact on pop culture goes beyond his musical contributions, as he also made significant strides in fashion and activism. Prince’s unique style and captivating performances captivated audiences around the world, leaving an indelible mark on the entertainment industry. His legacy will undoubtedly continue to shape the future of music and inspire generations to come [1].

His Legacy

What Types of Guitar Did Prince Play?

The Schecter Auerswald Symbol Guitars

Prince, the legendary musician, was not only known for his incredible talent but also for his unique collection of guitars. Among the various guitars he played throughout his illustrious career, one that stood out as truly iconic was the Schecter Auerswald Symbol guitar. This exceptional instrument was custom-made for Prince in 1993, showcasing a design that perfectly encapsulated his artistic vision.

The Schecter Auerswald Symbol guitar boasted a distinctive aesthetic, with three symbols adorning its body. A peace sign symbolizing harmony, a male-female symbol representing duality and unity, and an Egyptian ankh symbolizing life and eternity. These symbols not only added a touch of mystique but also reflected Prince’s profound artistic expression.

Prince’s affinity for the Schecter Auerswald Symbol guitar extended beyond its striking appearance. He relied on this guitar both on stage and in the studio, harnessing its versatile capabilities to bring his music to life. The guitar’s blend of modern and vintage elements further contributed to its allure, featuring a lightweight body and a Telecaster-style bridge that offered a perfect balance of comfort and playability.

Throughout his performances, the Schecter Auerswald Symbol guitar became an integral part of Prince’s image and sound, solidifying its status as an iconic instrument in music history. Its unique design, combined with Prince’s exceptional talent, created a captivating synergy that resonated with fans worldwide.

The Hohner Madcat Guitars

Another popular model that Prince often played and cherished was the Hohner Madcat guitar. This exceptional instrument, carefully crafted by Prince himself, boasted a distinctive shape and an unparalleled sound that was truly his own. The Hohner Madcat showcased a double-cutaway body, featuring a specially designed bridge, along with two single-coil pickups that delivered a rich and dynamic tone.

Prince’s deep connection with this guitar was evident as he showcased its versatility in numerous live performances, including his iconic Super Bowl halftime show in 2007. Not limited to the stage, Prince also showcased the Hohner Madcat’s brilliance on various studio recordings, leaving an enduring mark on legendary tracks like “Purple Rain” and “When Doves Cry.” The Hohner Madcat truly embodied the essence of Prince’s musical genius and remains an iconic symbol of his artistic legacy.

The Hohner Madcat Guitars

The Gibson L-Series Guitars

Prince, the legendary musician, had not only a passion for music but also a deep appreciation for vintage guitars. Among his favorites were the iconic Gibson L-series models, which first emerged in the 1930s and quickly gained recognition for their exceptional sound quality and exquisite craftsmanship. These acoustic guitars, with their rich tonal characteristics and stunning designs, captivated Prince’s heart.

Throughout his illustrious career, Prince relied on several Gibson L-series guitars, infusing his music with their distinct timbre and resonance. From timeless classics like “Sign o’ the Times” to the soulful ballads of “Diamonds and Pearls,” these guitars perfectly complemented his unique style and artistic expression.

Not limited to studio recordings, Prince often showcased the versatility and captivating sound of the Gibson L-series guitars during his intimate solo performances. Their melodic tones filled the air, enchanting the audience and leaving an indelible mark on their hearts.

In summary, Prince’s love for vintage guitars, particularly the Gibson L-series models, added an extra layer of brilliance to his musical journey. With these guitars as his trusted companions, he created timeless melodies that continue to resonate with fans around the world.

The Schecter Cloud Guitars

In addition to the Schecter Auerswald and Hohner Madcat guitars, Prince also had a custom model designed by Schecter called the Cloud guitar. This unique instrument featured a distinct cloud-shaped body with elaborate designs etched into it.

The Schecter Cloud guitar was used extensively by Prince during his “Purple Rain” era, and it remains one of the most iconic guitars associated with him. Several versions were made, including a purple one that is often seen in photographs and concert footage [2].

The Schecter Cloud Guitars

6 Facts about Prince’s gear that only superfans will know

The Mad Cat Guitar

One of Prince’s most iconic and cherished guitars was the Mad Cat, also known as the Hohner Telecaster. This exceptional guitar held a special place in Prince’s heart as it was a gift from his dear friend and fellow musician Chris Moon in 1983. The Mad Cat boasted a distinctive three-pickup configuration, which contributed to its distinct and versatile sound. With its rich and soulful tones, this custom-made guitar became an integral part of Prince’s musical journey, leaving an indelible mark on his hit album “Purple Rain” and captivating the hearts of fans worldwide.

The Purple Love Symbol Guitar

The Love Symbol Guitar, also known as the Hohner MadCat Telecaster, is another iconic guitar that Prince used extensively in his performances. This custom-made guitar features a maple neck with a purple love symbol on the headstock and a stunning gold finish on its body. The symbol of love not only represents Prince’s well-known moniker but also serves as a reminder of his uncompromising dedication and passion for music. This guitar was prominently featured on Prince’s iconic cover of “Guitar World” magazine in 1993, showcasing its significance to the artist and his legacy.

“Ejacucasters” and “Cloud” Guitars

Prince was famous for his unconventional approach to guitars, often modifying and customizing them to fit his unique playing style. This led him to create two of his most iconic guitars – the “Ejacucaster” and the “Cloud” guitar. The Ejacucasters were modified Fender Mustang guitars that Prince used during his early career, with a unique pickup configuration and distinct tone. On the other hand, the Cloud guitars were designed by Prince himself and featured a custom shape that resembled a cloud, adding to the artist’s mystique and one-of-a-kind image.

Pyramid cabinets and other unique amplifiers

In addition to his distinctive guitars, Prince also had a keen interest in exploring different amplifiers and speaker cabinets. One of his most notable choices was the pyramid cabinet, which he used during his performances in the 1980s. This unique design not only added to the visual appeal of his stage presence but also contributed to his signature sound. Prince was also known for using other rare and vintage amplifiers, showcasing his meticulous approach to crafting his sound and pushing the boundaries of traditional music.

The model C-60 microphone

Prince’s attention to detail extended beyond his guitars and amplifiers, as he also paid close attention to his choice of microphones. One particular mic that was closely associated with Prince was the model C-60 microphone by Electro-Voice. This dynamic microphone was known for its durability and exceptional sound quality, making it a perfect fit for Prince’s energetic performances and soulful voice. Prince was often seen using this microphone on stage and in the studio, cementing its place as an important part of his musical equipment.

The model C-60 microphone

LinnDrum drum machine

While Prince is most commonly known for his guitar skills, he was also a proficient drummer and incorporated various drum machines into his music. One such notable example is the LinnDrum drum machine, which Prince used extensively in his hit album “Purple Rain.” This iconic drum machine not only added a unique rhythm to his music but also allowed him to create complex and layered beats that contributed to the overall sound and success of the album. 

Prince’s use of technology in his music was ahead of its time and has since inspired countless musicians worldwide. So, it’s no surprise that Prince’s LinnDrum drum machine is still highly sought after and cherished by superfans. As his legacy continues to live on, so does his iconic gear, serving as a reminder of the artist’s unparalleled talent and dedication to pushing the boundaries of music.

How to maintain your guitar?

Once you have purchased your guitar, it is important to properly maintain it to keep it sounding and looking its best. Regular maintenance can also prevent costly repairs down the line. Here are some tips on how to maintain your guitar:

Clean Your Guitar Regularly

Dirt, dust, and grime can accumulate on your guitar over time and affect its sound quality. It is important to regularly clean your guitar, especially after each use. Use a soft cloth or microfiber cloth to wipe down the body of your guitar and remove any dirt or residue. For hard-to-reach areas, you can use a Q-tip dipped in rubbing alcohol. Be sure to also clean the strings with a string cleaner or rubbing alcohol to prevent the buildup of oils and dirt.

Clean Your Guitar Regularly

Store Your Guitar Properly

When not in use, it’s important to store your guitar in a safe and suitable location. Ideally, you should keep your guitar in its case or a guitar stand to prevent any accidental damage. Avoid storing your guitar in extreme temperatures or areas with high humidity as this can damage the wood and affect the sound quality.

Change Your Strings Regularly

Strings can become worn and stretched over time, affecting the tone and playability of your guitar. It is recommended to change your strings every 3-6 months, depending on how often you play. You can also clean your strings with a string cleaner or rubbing alcohol to prolong their lifespan.

Check for Any Damage or Wear

Regularly inspect your guitar for any damage or wear. Look for cracks, dents, or scratches on the body and neck of your guitar. Also check the tuning pegs, bridge, and nut for any signs of wear. If you notice any issues, it’s best to get them fixed by a professional before they worsen.

Get Your Guitar Professionally Set Up

If you find that your guitar is not playing or sounding as it should, it may be time for a professional setup. This involves adjusting the truss rod, action, intonation, and other components to ensure optimal playability and sound quality. A professional technician can also fix any issues you may have missed during your own inspections.

Play Your Guitar Regularly

Lastly, the best way to maintain your guitar is to play it regularly. Regular use helps keep the strings and wood conditioned, preventing any issues that may arise from lack of use. So don’t let your guitar collect dust, pick it up and play it often!

By following these tips, you can ensure that your guitar stays in top shape for years to come. Remember to always handle your guitar with care and give it the proper attention it deserves. Your instrument will thank you for producing beautiful music for years to come.


What did Prince’s guitar look like?

The iconic symbol of Prince’s guitar was the “Cloud Guitar”, a custom-built instrument that he often used during live performances. It was designed by David Rusan, a luthier from Minneapolis, and had a unique shape resembling a cloud with curvy edges. The Cloud Guitar was first introduced in 1983 and became synonymous with Prince’s style and persona.

However, Prince also had other guitars in his collection, including a custom-made purple Fender Stratocaster and a blue Hohner Madcat. He was known for his love of different types of guitars and often incorporated them into his music and performances.

What made Prince’s music unique?

Prince’s music was a fusion of various genres such as funk, rock, pop, and R&B. He was known for his innovative and experimental sound, incorporating elements of electronic music into his songs. His dynamic vocal range and exceptional guitar skills also added to the uniqueness of his music.

In addition, Prince was a prolific songwriter who produced hits not only for himself but also for other artists such as Sinead O’Connor, The Bangles, and Chaka Khan. His lyrics were often infused with sexual and spiritual themes, making his music both provocative and profound.

Did Prince have any notable collaborations?

Yes, Prince had many notable collaborations throughout his career. One of the most famous was his collaboration with The Revolution, the band that he formed in 1979 and recorded hits such as “Purple Rain” and “Kiss”. He also collaborated with music legends such as Stevie Wonder, Madonna, and George Clinton.

In addition to musical collaborations, Prince was also known for his artistic collaborations. He worked closely with renowned photographer Herb Ritts to create iconic album covers and music videos. He also collaborated with fashion designer Versace to create unique stage outfits that became synonymous with his style.

Did Prince play a Stratocaster?

Yes, Prince did play a Stratocaster. It was one of his favorite guitars to play and he often used it during live performances. He owned several custom-made Stratocasters in different colors, with his signature “Love Symbol” engraved on them.

One notable performance where Prince played a Stratocaster was during the 2007 Super Bowl halftime show, where he performed his iconic song “Purple Rain”. He also used a Stratocaster during his legendary performance at the 2004 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony, where he joined fellow legends Tom Petty, Steve Winwood, Jeff Lynne, and others to perform “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” in honor of George Harrison.

What was Prince’s favorite guitar?

It is difficult to say for sure what Prince’s favorite guitar was, as he had a vast collection and often rotated between different instruments. However, many believe that his custom-made purple Fender Stratocaster held a special place in his heart. It was the guitar he used during most of his live performances and it became closely associated with his iconic style.

Ultimately, Prince’s love for music and his guitars was what made him such a unique and influential artist. He will always be remembered for his incredible talent, dynamic performances, and unmatched creativity. Prince may have left us physically, but his legacy lives on through his timeless music and the memories he created with his beloved guitars. Let’s continue to celebrate the life of this musical legend by listening to his music and remembering the impact he had on the world.

What rank is Prince as a guitarist?

Prince is widely considered to be one of the greatest guitarists of all time. Rolling Stone ranked him at number 33 on their list of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time”, stating that he was a “master architect” and a “wizardly guitarist”. In addition, he has been praised by fellow music legends such as Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, and Carlos Santana for his exceptional guitar skills. Prince’s unique style and innovative sound continue to inspire musicians and guitarists around the world. So, it is safe to say that he ranks among the top guitarists in history.

Did Prince have a favorite key?

There is no evidence to suggest that Prince had a specific favorite key when it came to his music. He wrote and performed songs in various keys, depending on the mood and style of each song. However, he was known for incorporating complex chord progressions and using unusual chords in his compositions, showcasing his exceptional musicality and versatility as an artist. Prince’s ability to navigate through different keys and create captivating melodies is part of what made him such a phenomenal musician. So, it can be said that he did not have a particular favorite key, but rather embraced them all in his music. Prince’s ability to continually push the boundaries and challenge himself as an artist is just one of the many reasons why he will always be remembered as a musical genius.

Did Prince play a Telecaster?

While Prince was known to play a variety of guitars, there is no evidence that he ever played a Telecaster. He did, however, own a custom-made purple Fender Stratocaster and a blue Hohner Madcat which are often mistaken for Telecasters due to their similar body shape. So while Prince may have never played a Telecaster on stage, his unique guitar collection certainly included some similar-looking instruments.

Furthermore, Prince’s style and sound were so distinctive that he didn’t need to rely on a specific type of guitar to make an impact. He was able to create his signature sound regardless of the instrument he was playing. This is a testament to his remarkable talent and musical genius. In conclusion, while Prince may not have played a Telecaster, he will always be remembered as an extraordinary guitarist who pushed the boundaries of music and left a lasting impact on the world. Let’s continue to celebrate his legacy by appreciating his artistry and sharing his music with others. As Prince once said, “Music is real… It affects people, it can change the world.” And his music will continue to do just that.

Who were Prince’s favorite guitarists?

Prince was inspired by a wide range of musicians and guitarists throughout his career. Some of his favorite guitarists included Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Carlos Santana, and Joni Mitchell. He also expressed admiration for jazz guitarist Wes Montgomery and soul legend James Brown.

However, Prince was not limited to just these musicians and often found inspiration in unexpected places. He once said in an interview, “I’ll hear something and I’ll be like, ‘Oh, man. That’s it!’ But it may not come from a guitar player.” This showcases his open-mindedness and ability to draw inspiration from various sources.

Ultimately, Prince’s unique style and sound were a result of his diverse influences and his incredible creativity. He will always be remembered as an iconic and influential musician, who continues to inspire generations of artists. As Prince himself once said, “I don’t really care so much about what people say about me. It’s what they whisper that bothers me.” And the whispers will always speak of his exceptional talent and impact on the world of music.

Useful Video: 2021 Remaster “While My Guitar Gently Weeps” with Prince, Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne and Steve Winwood

Conclusion Paragraph

So, Prince played a very important role in the music of America. He helped to shape the sound of pop and rock music for generations to come. His unique blend of funk, pop, rock, and R&B has inspired countless artists and continues to do so today. Prince used different models of guitars such as the Fender Stratocaster and Telecaster, as well as custom-made instruments such as his trademark purple Cloud guitar. He also experimented with different styles of music, incorporating elements of jazz and psychedelic rock into his songs. Prince’s influence can be heard in a wide range of genres, from hip-hop to electronic dance music.

  1. https://www.biography.com/musicians/prince
  2. https://guitarspace.org/players/prince-guitars-and-gear-list/