Three tone sunburst never looked so good! 1961 Fender Jazzmaster in near MINT condition with lovely, original brown tolex case, plus some very nice candy…
The combination of tortoiseshell and sunburst really set the Fender’s premium offset guitars apart from their older siblings as the company went into the 60s. This went quite a way too giving the instruments a more refined look especially with the more prominent chrome accoutrements.
When you thought you’d seen all the sunbursts, then this guitar comes along and makes you re-evaluate that notion. Shy of a mark on the back, this finish is super clean. All three colours are vibrant, showcasing this early 60’s sunburst so well and unlike so many of this period, the red content of the sunburst has not faded at all.
Even the neck is in great shape and has not faded either. The lacquer is still glossy showing no real signs of use or any substantial knocks. The fretboard looks good and the original frets have plenty of life left in them.
One of the issues with this period is often the pickguard which has a tendency to shrink substantially and either crack or simply deform. In this case, you only have a little around the lower bout and the pickups but areas such as around the bridge have survived very well. This is important as the warping of the guard can impede the bridge and make it difficult to set the action. The hardware is very well preserved with only a little vague corrosion on the bridge. The vibrato unit is still splendid.
Electronically there has been a little repair. The neck pickup had a little issue that was sorted out but did not end up with a rewind. Elsewhere there hasn’t been any other issues and all the lighter solder joints have been left untouched.
The guitar comes with its correct Brown Tolex case with a whole raft of case candy, including an original dales receipt, as you can see from the pictures.
This guitar definitely delivers the classic Jazzmaster sound. The rhythm circuit is dark enough without being lost and the lead circuit cuts through and gives that perception of lifting the sound. The neck pickup has a nice smoothness whilst still retaining the clarity. The bridge pickup has a nice snarl to it without being too brittle.
Jazzmasters can easily be misunderstood. Many guitarists have stories of the guitars that didn’t sustain and sounded bad. Here is a guitar that looks as good as it plays and whoever bought it and then kept it in the case was missing out. Don’t let this be you and let this guitar get away.