FLASHBACK: The 1964 Fender Jaguar

FLASHBACK
1964 Blonde Fender Jaguar
Smells Like Teen Surfers…

photo by Gabriel Burgos

BACKGROUND
First released in 1962, the Jaguar was the ultimate surfer’s guitar. Just picture the Beach Boys cruising down the highway with these in hand.

WHAT IT SOUNDS LIKE
“Smells Like Teen Spirit” by Nirvana. Need we say more?

NOTABLE PLAYERS
Kurt Cobain brought it back but Marc Bolan (“Bang a gong, get it on”) played it and all the surf music of the early ’60s made the model a staple of the genre.

INTERESTING FEATURES
Sunburst was the standard color, so all others were either custom or considered more desirable. The “jag,” as it is known, used the same color palette and paint as GM cars of the times. 1964 was the final year for the guitar’s original run before Fender handed the reins of the company over to CBS, and it is widely believed the quality suffered for years in the wake of the transition.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Don Miggs is a singer/songwriter/producer and fronts the band miggs (Elm City/Capitol Records). His love affair with vintage instruments and gear only presents a problem when he’s awake. Chat music & gear with him @donmiggs or miggsmusic.com, lalamansion.com, or his radio show, @thefringeAM820 (Saturdays 5-7PM EST).

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