Premier Guitar features affiliate links to help support our content. We may earn a commission on any affiliated purchases.

Fender Unveils Updated Troy Van Leeuwen Jazzmaster

Fender Unveils Updated Troy Van Leeuwen Jazzmaster

Updates include personalized features including 1960s and 1970s-style design cues, a maple neck with block inlays, special switching, and an upgraded bridge.

Hollywood, CA (October 6, 2020) -- Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) today released an all-new, refreshed Troy Van Leeuwen Jazzmaster in a one-of-a-kind dazzling Copper Age colorway exclusive to Fender’s collaboration with Queens of the Stone Age guitarist, Troy Van Leeuwen. With personalized features including 1960s and 1970s-style design cues, a maple neck with block inlays, special switching and an upgraded bridge – the Troy Van Leeuwen Jazzmaster is as distinctive as the sounds he creates from it. Today, fans can get their own Troy Van Leeuwen Jazzmaster in these exclusive finishes – an instrument Van Leeuwen himself calls a “modern classic.” This artist signature launch precedes Van Leeuwen’s latest project, Gone Is Gone, and third collection of songs with Singer/Bassist Troy Sanders (Mastodon), Programmer and Drummer Tony Hajjar ( At The Drive In / Sparta ), Composer/Keyboardist Mike Zarin set for release later this year.

Troy Van Leeuwen has contributed deftly textural guitar work and atmospherics to some of alt-rock’s most acclaimed and forward-thinking bands. From Failure to A Perfect Circle, Queens of the Stone Age, Eagles of Death Metal, Puscifer and others, Van Leeuwen’s multi-instrumental expertise has given color and power to some of the most creative and popular rock music of the last three decades. “Troy and his iconic playing style have made an indelible mark on the rock idiom,” said Justin Norvell, EVP Fender Products. “He’s one of those guitar players that is synonymous with the Jazzmaster and pulls incredible sounds out of the instrument, pushing the limits of what’s creatively possible. As a result, his signature Jazzmaster has been embraced by guitar players since its initial release in 2014 – so much that there was no choice but to mix it up for players aesthetically. This model still keeps those `60s design cues, including block inlay and neck binding, as well as a matching headstock.”

“To have a Fender signature model is already a dream come true,” said Troy Van Leeuwen. “So, to be asked to refresh the look is an honor. Aesthetically, it’s a 180° turn from my original Candy Oxblood signature Jazzmaster, which excites me as I was looking to do a color that has a classic look. Guitars and cars from the ‘50s and ‘60s used the same paint colors. So, I tried to imagine a 1955 copper convertible Corvette with accents of Aztec Gold. I think we nailed it. The metallic finish really shines on the curves of the offset body shape. I also like the maple fingerboard with the black binding, because it’s a unique look for a Jazzmaster and it adds an attack to the guitar’s versatile tones. I’ve seen vintage Jaguars with this neck, but not very many Jazzmasters.”

Van Leeuwen kept the guitar pretty true to its original mid-60’s specifications on the inside, but replaced the slider for the bass circuit to a 2-way toggle switch – which he calls “a game changer” for his playing experience. “I need quick access to that circuit when I’m on stage switching between instruments and going from woofy creamy tones to wiry treble attack within the same song,” he added.

Troy discusses his music, guitar playing and a glimpse into his new Signature in an episode of Fender’s serialized social video series, Fender Demos. Fender Demos is an educational video series focused on providing a deep dive into Fender’s newest products. The series focuses on showcasing not only the key features and benefits but also the sonic quality of Fender’s instruments, amplifiers and pedals. In addition to product demos, the series also provides valuable beginner, intermediate and advanced tone tips, set-up and maintenance guides and insights to getting the most out of your Fender gear.

For more information:
Fender

While Annie Clark was named the 26th greatest guitarist of all time by Rolling Stone in 2023, she couldn’t care less about impressing an athletic stamp on either her sound or her image.


Photo by Alex Da Corte

On her eighth studio release, the electroacoustic art-rock guitarist and producer animates an extension of the strange and singular voice she’s been honing since her debut in 2007.

“Did you grow up Unitarian?” Annie Clark asks me. We’re sitting in a control room at Electric Lady Studios in New York’s West Village, and I’ve just explained my personal belief system to her, to see if Clark, aka St. Vincent, might relate and return the favor. After all, does she not possess a kind of sainthood worth inquiring about?

Read MoreShow less

The GibsonES Supreme Collection (L-R) in Seafoam Green, Bourbon Burst, and Blueberry Burst.

The new Gibson ES Supreme offers AAA-grade figured maple tops, Super Split Block inlays, push/pull volume controls, and Burstbucker pickups.

Read MoreShow less

Mdou Moctar has led his Tuareg crew around the world, but their hometown performances in Agadez, Niger, last year were their most treasured.

Photo by Ebru Yildiz

On the Tuareg band’s Funeral for Justice, they light a fiery, mournful pyre of razor-sharp desert-blues riffs and political calls to arms.

Mdou Moctar, the performing moniker of Tuareg guitar icon Mahamadou “Mdou” Souleymane, has played some pretty big gigs. Alongside guitarist Ahmoudou Madassane, drummer Souleymane Ibrahim, and bassist Mikey Coltun, Moctar has led his band’s kinetic blend of rock, psych, and Tuareg cultural traditions like assouf and takamba to Newport Folk Festival, Pitchfork Music Festival, and, just this past April, to the luxe fields of Indio, California, for Coachella. Off-kilter indie-rock darlings Parquet Courts brought them across the United States in 2022, after which they hit Europe for a run of headline dates.

Read MoreShow less

How do you capture what is so special about Bill Frisell’s guitar playing in one episode? Is it his melodies, his unique chord voicings, his rhythmic concept, his revolutionary approach to pedals and sounds…? It’s all of that and much more.

Read MoreShow less