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Tokai 'Springy Sound'- The Original Strat-Clone

SRV Texas Flood Cover Guitar

Tokai Springy Sound Strat Guitar Copy(photo:www.tokairegistry.com)

Back in the '70's- early 80's, Japan's Tokai company was making some of the most blatant replicas of popular Gibson and Fender guitars.

Lawsuits eventually forced Tokai to dial back the look-alike knob, but those old "Springy Sound" models have become somewhat of a cult collector's guitar.

Think about how wild this is. This Tokai model was NOT a copy of the Fender Strats of its time-- it was an attempt at replicating earlier "vintage" Strats. You see, back when guitar players were first talking up the Pre-CBS era instruments, someone in Japan was listening. Tokai weren't the only ones, but they best represent good quality in that niche. So in effect, they helped kick off the re-issue industry, as well as Gibson and Fender outsourcing "more affordable" models.

The really wild part is that now, "vintage" Tokai clones of vintage Fender Strats are becoming collectible and gaining cult status on their own. This only leads one to assume that other folks must be making counterfeits of Tokai Springy-Sound models.

Anyone remember the movie Multiplicity with Michael Keaton?

But wait! It gets even crazier! An article by Larry Meiners at www.tokairegistry.com states that Stevie Ray Vaughan was featured on the 1985-1986 Tokai Guitar Catalog cover. But wait-- there's more! He also states that SRV's guitar, pictured on 1983's Texas Flood album cover art, is a Tokai Springy Sound, and that the Tokai headstock labeling was removed before the album covers were printed-- however, the giant pre-release music store posters plainly displayed the headstock labeling shown in the above photo!

Click Here for more SRV-related Tokai photos.

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