Why have Fender not made a Jeff Buckley Signature yet?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Teleman60, Oct 11, 2019.

  1. Teleman60

    Teleman60 TDPRI Member

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    Fender has released 3 signature models in tribute of Kurt Cobain. Guild reissued the Guild M-20 and nicknamed it the "Nick Drake guitar". Yamaha made a limited edition tribute to the FG-180 similar to what Elliott Smith used. Yet no Jeff Buckley Signature Telecaster? If they replicated his 1983 Toploader Telecaster I think people across all genres of music would buy it. I have been using a Squier Classic Vibe Telecaster '50s Butterscotch Blonde into a Super Champ X2 and sometimes an Eno Reverb pedal. I can get a pretty cool Telecaster sound but no way can I play like Jeff Buckley. A guitar made to tribute him would be wicked cool!
     
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  2. Bruxist

    Bruxist Friend of Leo's

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    Maybe the Jeff Buckley estate is not interested?

    His would be a pretty cool choice given that it is an interesting guitar (toploader) from an interesting era in Fender history.
     
  3. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's

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    I can think of some possible reasons:

    - He passed 22 years ago
    - Not as big a name as someone like Cobain
    - They already did a Jim Campilongo top loader, how different was Buckley's?

    None of them seem to be great reasons but maybe they add up to enough? It'd be interesting to be a fly on the wall in meetings where the decide this stuff... I'd have to imagine they're biased towards signature guitars of living players who can do marketing with them.
     
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  4. brbadg

    brbadg Tele-Afflicted

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    His father was better.:p
     
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  5. SixStringSlinger

    SixStringSlinger Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

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    Money obviously plays a part, in the sense of "Can we sell enough of this new thing compared to all the other old things to justify producing this whole new thing?".

    On the other hand, I remember reading that when they were first exploring a Buddy Guy signature Strat, Buddy selected what basically added up to the already-existing Clapton Strat. However, are there not currently both Clapton and Buddy Strats? So I wonder what changed there.
     
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  6. beninma

    beninma Friend of Leo's

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    Probably Buddy Guy's existed because he's known for the outlandish paint scheme and Clapton is not? (Wasn't Buddy's a MIM that was more affordable?)

    I'd argue Buddy Guy is way way more significant of a player than Buckley as well, and he's alive, and his charisma probably helped sell a lot of guitars too.

    I have to admit I had never heard of Buckley till the last few years.. I doubt I'd ever have heard of him if I had not started to play guitar. I do think he was really great though.
     
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  7. rze99

    rze99 Poster Extraordinaire

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    His guitar was not distinct enough.
     
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  8. ben smith

    ben smith Tele-Holic

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    that would be sweet! even though it might be quite easy to replicate his guitar? but yeah i am a huge fan of his and a huge fan of that idea
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019
  9. ben smith

    ben smith Tele-Holic

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    if a top loader is good enough for jeff it's good enough for me
     
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  10. ben smith

    ben smith Tele-Holic

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    Last edited: Oct 11, 2019
  11. Lefty Addams

    Lefty Addams Tele-Afflicted

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    i doubt he was popular enough for a signature model.
     
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  12. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

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    I think it's a fine idea, as an idea.

    But the details would be a little complicated, no? From what I read, he never actually owned that tele; it was on loan to him and was returned to the owner after he died. Never married, no children. To get the license, etc. who do you talk you? The owner of the residual estate? Kinda makes you wonder who got the royalties when Hallelujah caught fire more than 10 years after he died. Lots of problems there. Maybe more problems than a market.

    Next, it was an '83 reissue, yes? So now we're talking re-issue of a re-issue? Somewhere in the back of my mind I've been wondering about the whole re-issue deal, when it comes to re-issue of a re-issue, or just how many iterations might we see in a lifetime. I don't know.

    but by all accounts, he was a wonderful musician. Described his upbringing as "rootless trailer trash"; met his natural father once. Died in the Mississippi River by Memphis. This sure sounds like a book and a movie, right?

    I guess there's been a couple documentaries already. Sometimes, all this kind of stuff has sort of vulture like feel, picking the bones clean.
     
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  13. bender66

    bender66 Poster Extraordinaire

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    That's not a 1/4 Pounder in the bridge.
     
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  14. TeleTown

    TeleTown Friend of Leo's

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    Just get ya an 83 top loader, sharpie his name on the headstock, and live it up son.
     
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  15. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    Buckley's guitar was a 1983 Standard Tele, not a Reissue. While the 1983-84 Standards are a top-loaders they are a lot different from the Jim Campilongo Tele which was a vintage-style top-loader (and the current Jimmy Page Mirror is set up so you can either top load it or string through the body, but it is also a vintage style guitar).

    Frankly I think that Fender wants to avoid having anything to do with the 1983-84 Standard and Elite models; while well-made instruments they were poor sellers, and stand out as kind of a failure for the company - remember, the leaders of Fender when the 1983-84 models were designed were the people who bought the company from CBS, so they likely view these as a "black mark" on their "permanent records" so to speak.

    Plus I'm sure that the Buckley estate hasn't been interested even if approached by Fender.

    There were 2 Buddy Guy Strats, which is more or less an MIM Standard Strat with polka-dot finishes and a soft V neck - or I suppose you could also consider it a Tex-Mex or Jimmie Vaughan with standard pickups instead of the Tex-Mex pickups

    The now discontinued USA Buddy Guy was the Clapton Strat with a couple of changes aside from colors (no polka dot finishes for the USAs) - ash body instead of alder, unblocked tremolo, and eventually when the Clapton changed to Vintage Noiseless pickups the Guy stuck with the Lace Sensors.
     
  16. Mike Simpson

    Mike Simpson Doctor of Teleocity

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    Maybe because a lot of people never heard of him... I had to google the name.
     
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  17. teletimetx

    teletimetx Doctor of Teleocity

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    Thanks for the correction! To me it looks sort of blackguard re-issue-ish, if that makes sense, but good to know the accurate details.
     
  18. monkeybanana

    monkeybanana Tele-Meister

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    mmhmm
    I just found out my coworker was good friends with JB and was going to draw his next album cover. My jaw dropped to the floor. How cool is that! Anyway, love the guitar on their recordings and of course his voice. It seems a lot of people are getting into him again (Instagram).
     
  19. ben smith

    ben smith Tele-Holic

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    nah he was wrong it's a Seymour Duncan STK-T2B Hot T-Stac BK
     
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  20. John C

    John C Friend of Leo's

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    It looks like he put a black pickguard on it along the way; his also looks more BSB than the typical olympic/vintage white that was a factory color that year. It probably had a white pickguard from the factory.
     
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