surf guitar

At the time this Jazzmaster was sold, a blonde finish was an unusual alternative on the model to the more typical sunburst.

The famous Jazzmaster bucked conventional Fender design norms at the time it was released, as well as expectations of whom it would appeal to.

Even though the Fender Telecaster and Stratocaster were selling well to those playing country, blues, and rock ’n’ roll, Leo Fender wanted to design a guitar that appealed to serious jazz musicians. Fender introduced this guitar in mid 1958. It was optimistically named the Jazzmaster, and while it was quickly embraced by famed, jazz-informed country session player Harold Bradley, its newly designed mellower pickups and floating vibrato still did not appeal to highbrow jazz musicians. The new model was, however, embraced by young players, like the instrumental group called the Ventures, who played a new type of music eventually known as “surf.”

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RJ Ronquillo on The Ventures' "Walk, Don't Run" | Hooked

The Nashville-based YouTube sensation who’s slung strings with Carlos Santana and Stevie Wonder digs into the surf and Johnny Smith jazz versions of this ’50s/’60s classic.

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The Firstman Liverpool Deluxe looks extreme, but would you believe it once appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show?

I've had this month's story on my shelf for quite some time, because I could really weave so many interesting threads and connections to this guitar. How does one honor a tremendous man with huge contributions to music when limited to a single page? But I'm feeling like it's time to tell at least part of the story behind one of the most interesting people I've ever met through my love of guitars.

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