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6 Music News

Fender unveils Johnny Marr guitar

The legendary guitarist wishes he had discovered the Jaguar years ago

  • 06/01/2012
  • Sinead Garvan
Johnny Marr signiture Jaguar guitar credit Carl Lyttle

The former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr has modified the original Jaguar and put his name on it.

"I kind of ending up making a brand new version of a great guitar and it does more with less stuff on it, I got rid of a load of unwanted stuff but you would never know looking at it."

It seems like an obvious collaboration between the two. Neil Whitcher from Fender told 6 Music why they wanted to work with him:

"He is the guitarist that redefined guitar music for a generation really.

"He is also not the kind of musician who relies on his past glories, he has continued to evolve as a player."

This wasn't a vanity project for Marr, he spent four years perfecting the model after picking up the jaguar for the first time while touring with Modest Mouse in 2005.

"When I first started playing it, I wished that I had discovered it twenty years earlier because the sound of it sounded like I think I am supposed to sound."

He meticulously tried and tested various modifications until it was exactly how he wanted it.

"It was a little difficult as I so loved the original jags and the look of them particularly that I didn't want to take that away from that " he explained.

"But there was a lot of things about them technically that were really outdated and clunky for me."

He now joins the illustrious list of musicians who have a guitar named after them.

"It's kind of hard to get your head around like Chet Atkins, Les Paul, having a guitar named after you by a company like Fender, it's mind boggling really."

But it's not just the honour of being immortalised as a guitar that matters to Johnny.

"I want it to be a guitar that could hang on the rack in the middle of all those other guitars with those illustrious names and it to hold it's own.

"For someone to walk into a shop and play it and even if they are not a fan of this particular model to go that is a really great instrument."

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