The Fender Stratocaster guitar is probably the most popular solid-body electric guitar ever made. Early models (1954 to 1965, known as "pre-CBS" models, since CBS Broadcaster Company bought Fender in January 1965) are the most collectible and sought-after instruments. The 1961 Stratocaster was not radically different from those of '59 and '60. The neck profile did thicken somewhat, though was not as thick as pre-1958. Other changes include the addition of patent numbers to the headstock, and a bolder red hue in the "3-tone" sunburst finish. The wood composition remained alder body featuring the three-ply white-black-white celluloid nitrate pick-guard, maple neck with "slab" rosewood fingerboard. Sunburst was a standard finish for the '61 Stratocaster though some custom finishes do start to become more common.
This guitar was extensively used by Jeff Kollman. In an all out guitar interview from 10/2006 he gave the list of guitars he mainly used at that time:
"I have a 1958 Gibson Les Paul special with P90’s, a 1961 strat, a 71 strat hardtail and Fender Custom Shop ‘Relic’ strat. On the strats I use the Dunlop 6105 frets, and the 6100 frets for the Les Paul’s. I also use a high pass filter on all my guitars to retain the high end and take out a bit of bottom end when I turn my volume knob down.”
Most of those guitars are now in this collection.