My guitar collection - G&L


G&L, founded in the early-1980s, is also named after George Fullerton, who worked with/for Leo since the 1950s at Fender, and founded G&L Musical Products Inc. I suppose this is what George & Leo imagined what a vintage Stratocaster should look and sound like today. They even reacquired much of the original tooling and machines CBS had scrapped to built their “new” instruments! This guitar has a swamp ash body with an old-time Two-tone Sunburst finish and gun-oil stained Bird’s Eye maple neck with 12” radius fingerboard with Dunlop vintage Medium 6230 frets. The neck carve is a late-1950s soft V-shape that feels incredible. Its hardware consists of three CLF-100 Alnico Vintage single-coil pickups as found on the Legacy, volume control, and separate (treble cut) tone controls for middle and neck pickup, just like George’s 1954 Stratocaster on which these controls are based. But it is not all vintage-inspired stuff. First, instead of the vintage 3-position pickup selector, her one finds the 5-position version with the quacky in-between sounds readily available. This instrument also has a G&L patented Dual-Fulcrum Vibrato (DFV). The single-ply white pickguard is nicely complimented by the creme pickup covers and control knobs. It also comes with a signed copy of George Fullerton’s “Guitars from George & Leo: How Leo Fender and I Built G&L Guitars”, referenced in several places within these pages. Unfortunately, this model was discontinued in 2008 and hence is no longer listed among the offered instruments. And with the passing of George on July 4th, 2009 (see e.g. Willie G. Moseley’s “George Fullerton (1923-2009) - Guitar Icon”), it is highly unlikely to be reintroduced. It certainly would not bear his signature on both the upper bass horn and the headstock. The webpage for this model on the G&L website was taken down in December 2013, although still accessible via this archived snapshot from 2008.


George Fullerton Signature model

The story behind this guitar


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After having listened to numerous accolades from Ron Stoehr, this guitar was custom ordered when The Zobrist still existed here in Seattle. I had seen the nice contrast between the creme covers and white pickguard on the website and wanted that too. In those days you could also select a tweed case, instead of tolex, which for this guitar is to be preferred. Ron was absolutely right: this guitar is an amazing player! If you would order the same quality from Fender, you would pay quite a bit more for a Custom Shop model. And in his other book, Guitars from George & Leo: How Leo Fender and I Built G&L Guitars, George claims this “is the closest thing to a 1959 Stratocaster ever made by G&L”. And George is right too!

The story behind this guitar



none, marked ‘Tint shiny’, ‘V/VF’, ‘BE’, ‘Neckwork’, ‘2001’

09 OCT 2001

D’Addario EXL110 Nickel Wound Regular Light (10-46)