Dating levinson blade guitars
“I don’t have a giant frame, so a Tele is just right for me.I played a friend’s Gibson 335 recently, and it just felt too cumbersome and I didn’t feel comfortable with it.I’ve got a 2015 Custom Shop Mary Kay Relic celebrating 20 years since Fender introduced the first Relic guitars at the NAMM show in ’95.Three key guys kept it secret, they just put it in a glass case, and all the dealers thought it was an original ’56.Along with the Playboy Marilyn Monroe Strat and the chrome Harley-Davidson Strat, it’s from the Fender Diamond Dealer Limited Edition Series.John Page, who managed the Fender Custom Shop back in the day, always made the point that while these instruments may look ornamental, they were all built to play and sound great.“Sourcing material and information has proved tremendously exciting, spending many hours discussing the specification and detail on these special guitars.
“There’s a USA factory-built 50th Anniversary 1998 Collectors Edition Telecaster.
“Let’s just go back to ’94, when the Fender Custom Shop also played a part in the same celebration.
I have a fine example of the 40th Anniversary Stratocaster Diamond Dealer model, which was launched in January ’94 and limited to a run of 150.
The fact that Peter Green’s signature was on the scratchplate was an attraction, but I soon realised that this was a really cool guitar that had it all: two-tone sunburst, nitrocellulose finish, maple neck and single-ply scratchplate; it played beautifully and sounded wonderful, and came complete with the original case candy, 40th Anniversary hardshell case, plus a replica of the original-shaped ‘Poodle’ case.
“I heard from a friend who said he had the same model, so knowing that the standard Strats from ’94 are often confused with limited-edition models, I thought I must take a look at his Anniversary Strat.The scratchplate is a bit special, with a striking grained-Ivoroid finish.” “Fred Stuart had a hand in the design; he was one of the first Masterbuilders, he spent 15 years at Fender and like his colleagues has been really helpful providing information for my book.