So just how cheap were Fender offsets before they became popular?

Discussion in 'Other Guitars, other instruments' started by Daddy Hojo, Oct 1, 2020.

  1. Daddy Hojo

    Daddy Hojo Friend of Leo's

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    I keep seeing all of these completely thrashed Jaguars, Mustangs, and Jazzmasters from the bands of the 90s - Sonic Youth, Nirvana, Dinosaur Jr, etc. Everyone claims that these bands were playing the (then) less popular offsets because they were less popular and cheap. But just how cheap were they? I live in a KY small town, so I never saw guitars like these in pawn shops back in the day.

    Anybody got any memory of just how cheap they were?
     
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  2. xtelesquirex

    xtelesquirex Tele-Holic

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    I saw an interview...might have been J Mascis. He said he wanted to buy a Strat. If memory serves, which is questionable, the Strat was 800, but the Jazzmaster was only 600. So he bought that instead.
     
  3. xtelesquirex

    xtelesquirex Tele-Holic

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    I was way off with those numbers....

    https://www.rollingstone.com/music/...itar-lore-favorite-dinosaur-jr-albums-107825/


     
  4. Fearnot

    Fearnot Poster Extraordinaire

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    When I was looking for a 'real guitar' in 1973, my teacher offered me his 1964 Jazzmaster for $135... and they actually went down in price as the '70s wore on.
     
  5. Blrfl

    Blrfl Tele-Holic

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    They were quite expensive: the $350 MSRP for a Jazzmaster in 1960 is about $3,100 in today's dollars.

    MSRP today is $730 for the Player and $2,000 for the high-end models.
     
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  6. Boreas

    Boreas Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    I believe when the Jazzmaster was first issued, It was marketed as Fender's top of the line guitar, and priced accordingly. Now-famous players - especially people like Hendrix and Clapton, ignored the marketing and used the Strat. The public followed suit. The Seattle-style bands did the same with short scale offsets. Now nothing is cheap if it has a Fender logo...
     
  7. Fender-guy

    Fender-guy Tele-Meister

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    They came out as the flagship of fenders. They didn’t sell very well and slowly disappeared. Then Kurt and others used them but they were and still are the cheapest of the vintages fenders now. I still don’t think they’re vary popular. I have a jag and still want a jazzmaster. I really like the offsets.
     
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  8. Guy Guyatone

    Guy Guyatone TDPRI Member Silver Supporter

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    In 1979 a friend of mine bought a Jaguar from a thrift store for $30!
     
  9. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    The reason punks played them was because they were cheap on the used market. They fell out of favor in the early 70s because they had become inextricably linked to surf music--which was dead by then. No youngsters were playing surf in the US and UK. It did remain popular in Japan, however.

    The surf guitars ended up at pawn shops and boot sales. Even Mosrites were cheap on the used market; you could find 'em for $100 or less (Johnny Ramone, anyone?). One of Kurt Cobain's first electrics was a Standel.
     
  10. Dan R

    Dan R Poster Extraordinaire

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    I bought an original 1966 Fender Mustang in 1989 for $400. They also had an original 1964 Jazzmaster for $400. Maybe not cheap, but not expensive either.

    I sold the Mustang some years later for $950.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2020
  11. howardlo

    howardlo Tele-Holic

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    I bought a new Jazzmaster in the spring of 1965, right after high school graduation. It cost me around $325, which certainly wasn’t cheap at the time. Only the Jaguar was more in the Fender line up at the time, at about $25 more than the Jazzmaster.

    Worked a summer job all summer before going to college and didn’t make enough to pay it off. My parents paid the balance for me.

    Not sure what you mean by before they got popular. They were popular when they first came out. The Ventures, The BeachBoys and a lot of the early 60’s surf bands were playing them, along with a bunch of garage bands. I played my Jazzmaster in my band and my lead player played a Jag he got new in 1964.

    I was looking at a site that covered late 50’s through mid 60’s Indiana bands and probably 80 per cent had a Jazzmaster,a Jaguar and often both. Nearly every guitar was a Fender guitar, almost none of anything else with the exception of an occasional Gretsch.
     
    Last edited: Oct 1, 2020
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  12. Boreas

    Boreas Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    Those days are long gone... Used to be able to buy old Silvertones, Harmonys, Kays, Danelectros, etc. cheap - $50-200. Now everything is considered a rare vintage guitar and everyone who owns one puts them up for sale with "hail Mary" price tags. Really messes with the market.
     
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  13. Guy Guyatone

    Guy Guyatone TDPRI Member Silver Supporter

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    Elvis Costello really started the Jazzmaster resurgence in 1977. Jaguars took a while longer to appreciate, they still aren't as popular as a JM.
     
  14. 62 Jazzmaster

    62 Jazzmaster Friend of Leo's

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    I paid $300 Canadian for a Jazzmaster that the sales dude claimed was a '59 (it was really a '62) with OHSC in 1976.
     
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  15. Peegoo

    Peegoo Friend of Leo's

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    I bought this 1965 Mustang in 1985 for $100.

    It was disassembled and all the original parts were in a cardboard box (came in like this on a trade at a little guitar shop). The body had been badly refin'd several times. I shot it with gold, dressed the frets, and put it all back together. It's a sweetie.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. kLyon

    kLyon Tele-Holic Gold Supporter

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    When I was coming up in Florida, it was all about strats and les pauls. You couldn't give jazzmasters and jaguars away.
    I remember passing up a pre-cbs jazzmaster for $200 in the late '70's: It just didn't look right (Hendrix didn't play one and Duane Allman didn't play one and I probably didn't have $200 anyway...))
    But if I stacked up my bad gear decisions over the years it would make quite a skyscraper... did I mention the Dumble Overdrive Special I didn't buy from Howard (now Alexander) for $750 when I first moved to LA?
     
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  17. aadvark

    aadvark Tele-Meister

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    I bought a '64 Jazzmaster, nice sunburst, in 1985 for about $200 AUD. Nice neck.
     
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  18. JKjr

    JKjr Tele-Holic

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    You almost couldn't give away a Jag or Mustang, and I picked up a 61 Jazzmaster for a friend at the grand price of $200. It was mint or would have been cheaper.
     
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  19. JKjr

    JKjr Tele-Holic

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    As an afterthought when I was in boot camp in the late 70's they had a band you could play with in church on Sunday. The instruments were a couple Jags and an old tele bass. Everybody who played bitched about "old f*cked up gear.
     
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  20. slauson slim

    slauson slim Friend of Leo's

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    In the early ‘60s in Southern California Jazzmasters and Jaguars were played in surf bands. Then came the British Invasion and the players wanted Rics and Gretsches. Hendrix and Clapton popularized Strats, and Bloomfield, Clapton, Kossoff, Green and Page popularized Les Pauls.

    The high end Fenders fell from grace, lacking coolness, because the big time rockers did not play them. Before Hendrix the same was true for strats - unpopular and cheap. Les Pauls were impossible to find and expensive.

    The San Francisco bands favored SGs, LPs and semi-hollow Gibsons.

    I bought a new re-issue Gibson Les Paul Goldtop with P90s in 1968 when they were re-introduced - $400, no case. Gibson stopped making Lesters in the early’60s due to lack of interest. I had some warranty work done on it at Barney Kessel’s guitar shop in Hollywood. The repair guy told me I should have bought a used SG shape Les Paul, they had several, and said they were better guitars. He was right.
     
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