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Old 12.06.10, 7:41 PM
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Lightbulb A Little Guitar For Thought...I Guess...

Hey guys! Haven't been around the site in a little under a year, I've missed it! So much has happened in that time, we've all grown a little...

Anyways, it's been that time in my young life where I've been distracted by SOOOO many other things that I forgot the greatest hobby of all: Guitars. I haven't lusted, drooled or begged for a guitar in ages; never even crossed my mind until recently. And I want to fulfill my personal dream of owning a finely-made Fender Jazzmaster. And I think I've found my White Whale...err...PURPLE Whale. Yes. The J. Mascis signature.

After scouring Musicians Friend and piecing together that they've been discontinued, I began to look on eBay. And then I looked at the prices: generally around $600-$1000, depending on owners. Why would a well-made guitar with a standard $1600 guitar be selling at such LOW rates? My explanation: no one wants to pay that much for a guitar like that!

It seems history is repeating itself. When the Jazz's and Jag's were first released, Fender couldn't move enough product because there wasn't a high enough demand for them, one factor, I'm assuming, was price. Then when the great Alternative movement happened and they regained popularity, all those musicians got a top-dollar, well-made guitar and close to nothing. The same thing is happening now.

The Elvis Costello Jazzmaster wasn't around very long was it? No, because while it was a well made instrument, it was too expensive. There's a high demographic in todays young guitarists for offset waist Fenders, but most don't have the bank to buy the MIJ or even the Classic Player series. It feels like Fender may be exploiting the Jazz/Jag's popularity by making high-priced instruments knowing that customers will buy them. To me, as a customer and long-time Fender fan, that just doesn't seem right.

With some of these facts/statements above, does it at all make you guys mad about the Sonic Youth signatures? Don't get me wrong, SY is my ALL-TIME FAVORITE BAND.....EVER!!!!! And I think it's nice that Fender is recognizing these instruments and players more. But REALLY???? $1500 for a custom color and ONE volume knob??? That seems, oh I don't know....a little, perhapes, CRAZY??? Seems worth more like $1000 to me.

And I recognize that Fender perhaps had the foresight to see this error and released the Blacktop series. But, IMO, it's not a Jazzmaster if it has a humbucker in it.

And Fender, PLEASE reduce the price on the Mustang! For goodness sakes, it's a STUDENT MODEL!

In conclusion: I think I speak for a lot of guitarists when I say that Fender has made some of the best guitars ever. Some of the most legendary designs no doubt. But I think sales would increase by SIMPLY reducing the prices of the more sought-after "higher-end" models. Make them the original way, no fancy changes or missing pieces "suited for today's players". That's not what I want. I want famous Fender quality from a famous Fender guitar at the trademark Fender price. If not, it seems history will repeat itself and those instruments will end up in the bargain bin at the local pawn shops because no one would buy them when they were issued.

Does anybody agree? Sorry for the long post, I missed you guys!
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  #2  
Old 12.06.10, 7:43 PM
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P.S. This wasn't meant as a hate-thread, just a simple musing to make you guys think.
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  #3  
Old 12.07.10, 9:32 AM
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They discontinued the Costello and the Mascis Jazzmaster? First time I heard it.
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Old 12.07.10, 10:37 AM
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Hey,
I'm a Jazzmaster player.

You can still buy J. Mascis Jazzmasters. I heard from a friend who works at Fender that they many music stores have substatial over-stock on it, so I'm sure you'll be able to find them for awhile.

IMHO, the J. Mascis Jazzmaster doesn't really capture the vibe of his Jazzmasters, nor does it capture the best of J. Mascis's tone. It plays a bit rough, and the purple paint feels like it doesn't breathe. I played it on an EP for a solo. It's very different sounding. I also saw Jay play it at a show for half a song (when one of his 65's strings broke) and once the guitar tech re-strung it he was back onto his 65. I've played a 68 Jazzmaster and there was just this aged beautiful vibe to it. Maybe the best guitar I've ever played.

The Elvis Costello model is actually pretty awesome, that furniture polish finish is epic. As far as it being discontinued Fender doesn't usually keep sig models of this kind active for that long. Same with the really cool Venture models they had.

The two Sonic Youth sig JMs (Lee Ranaldo and Thurston Moore) are also pretty nifty. The Lee Ranldo specifically is very unique. It plays like a Jazzmaster, but it's humbuckers ad a cool vibe. I have always been a fan of Fender full-range humbuckers though.

No matter what you do (unless you buy a vintage one) those guitars require an initial investment to get the Jazzmaster tone. The Seymour Duncan Antiquity II Jazzmaster pick-ups are a nice touch, as are the lollars and the Chris Novaks.

I have a mid-90s Japanese Jazzmaster, as well as a mid-90s Mustang. All with new pick-ups and modifications. They're not perfect guitars, but they have a very iconic tone when you find it.

I'm pretty sure Ahab would have played a Jazzmaster, Jaguar, or Mustang...

Last edited by mmasonmusic; 12.07.10 at 10:44 AM.
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Old 12.07.10, 2:03 PM
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Well I see what you mean about Fender not keeping those models in production. They're good guitars, but it seems like if they were cheaper they would've made more money off of them.
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1968 Fender Bassman; 2x12 Fender cab, Jensen C12n's
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  #6  
Old 12.08.10, 7:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feedback View Post
And Fender, PLEASE reduce the price on the Mustang! For goodness sakes, it's a STUDENT MODEL!
Danelectro essentially have with the dead on 67. Some phasing switches on it and you're not far from a 'stang. I predict the Dano will become amazingly collectible amoung alt rockers.
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Old 12.08.10, 10:17 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feedback View Post
Well I see what you mean about Fender not keeping those models in production. They're good guitars, but it seems like if they were cheaper they would've made more money off of them.
I can assure you that no musical instrument company makes money like Fender does... Fender Musical Instruments Corporation is a huge money making machine. They also own Gretsch, Jackson Guitars, Charvel, Hamer, Tacoma, Guild Guitar Company, SWR Sound Corporation, Brand X, Orpheum, Olympia, Takamine, Ovation, and GTX.

The Fender brand of Fender Musical Instruments Corporation is marketed to create a certain vibe. They are constantly modifying their designs and approach to marketing in order to appear as though they're both iconic and relevant. They have a "tone" and a "look" that most people can identify with just by hearing the name Fender. That is something which very few brands or even bands have done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jonbye View Post
Danelectro essentially have with the dead on 67. Some phasing switches on it and you're not far from a 'stang. I predict the Dano will become amazingly collectible amoung alt rockers.
I have a Danelectro Dead on 67, and it is not a Mustang. I have a Mustang too and it is not a Dead on 67. They're similar, but far from the same. The Danelectro Dead on 67 is esentially a Coral Hornet.

Last edited by mmasonmusic; 12.08.10 at 10:22 AM.
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Old 12.09.10, 10:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonbye View Post
Danelectro essentially have with the dead on 67. Some phasing switches on it and you're not far from a 'stang. I predict the Dano will become amazingly collectible amoung alt rockers.
Wow I may have to look into that, thanks man!
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Voodoo Lab Sparkle Drive MOD-->Way Huge Red Llama-->EHX Germanium 4 Big Muff-->EHX Small Clone-->Boss TR-2-->MXR CS 74 Phase 90-->EHX Deluxe Memory Boy-->Digitech Digiverb

1968 Fender Bassman; 2x12 Fender cab, Jensen C12n's
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  #9  
Old 12.09.10, 10:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmasonmusic View Post
The Fender brand of Fender Musical Instruments Corporation is marketed to create a certain vibe. They are constantly modifying their designs and approach to marketing in order to appear as though they're both iconic and relevant. They have a "tone" and a "look" that most people can identify with just by hearing the name Fender. That is something which very few brands or even bands have done.
I agree with you completely, they sure know how to sell stuff. I was just pointing out that they, like any other company, have made some (what I would call) marketing errors.
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  #10  
Old 12.10.10, 7:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmasonmusic View Post
I
I have a Danelectro Dead on 67, and it is not a Mustang. I have a Mustang too and it is not a Dead on 67. They're similar, but far from the same. The Danelectro Dead on 67 is esentially a Coral Hornet.
No, thats understood. But still, its not a bad filler guitar in place - the lipstick tubes are pretty good and the vintage trem is fun. And with some mods you could get it close to a mustang for a lot less money
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Old 12.20.10, 5:00 PM
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I just had a quick question: How does the J. Mascis Jazzmaster compare to the Classic Player Jazz?
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  #12  
Old 12.21.10, 10:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feedback View Post
I just had a quick question: How does the J. Mascis Jazzmaster compare to the Classic Player Jazz?
I would lean towards the J. Mascis over the Classic Player.

Here is a used Japanese model on e-bay.
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Old 12.21.10, 2:20 PM
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Just let the natural cycle of "supply and demand" run its course and everything will work itself out.

Meanwhile, take advantage of it.
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Old 12.21.10, 9:01 PM
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Originally Posted by cosmiqphuz View Post
Just let the natural cycle of "supply and demand" run its course and everything will work itself out.

Meanwhile, take advantage of it.
Oh don't worry, I tend to take FULL advantage of it
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1968 Fender Bassman; 2x12 Fender cab, Jensen C12n's
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  #15  
Old 12.21.10, 10:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Feedback View Post
And I recognize that Fender perhaps had the foresight to see this error and released the Blacktop series. But, IMO, it's not a Jazzmaster if it has a humbucker in it.
Then I guess the Lee Ranaldo signature Jazzmaster wouldn't appeal to you because it has humbuckers?

You can always switch out the humbucker on the BT Jazzmaster. Several people already have and replaced it with either a humbucker more to their liking or a single coil pickup.
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