Eric Clapton Fender guitar auctions for $45,000

A Fender Stratocaster Eric Clapton played at his "Slowhand at 70" gig at London's Royal Albert Hall last year has auctioned.

Signed by Clapton on the pickboard, the 2014-built instrument made $45,000 at Heritage Auctions on July 23. The proceeds will help musician Johnny Nicholas pay his wife's leukaemia treatment bills. Nicholas is a former member of US country group Asleep at the Wheel.

Eric Clapton Fender
Clapton played two Fender Strats at the 2015 concert

Heritage said the Strat was "nearly new with the exception of a few very light scratches on the back from Eric's playing the guitar."

Clapton's guitars are perennial strong sellers, such is collectors' appreciation of the Yardbirds guitarist's talents. Clapton's 1948 Gibson L-5P sold for $82,960 in 2011.

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