Fender Jazzmaster 1961 Blond in Alabama
Posted on January 20 2022
I've just returned from buying this Fender Jazzmaster 1961 in original white Blond finish from the family of its original owner in Cullman, Alabama! As a Fender guitar collector, I prefer Fender Jazzmasters from the late 1950s and early 1960s, but I especially love the Blond finishes over Ash body with the red faux tortoiseshell pickguard.
If you've inherited a Fender Jazzmaster or other Fender guitar from the 1950s or 1960s and are looking for help with dating and identification, check out Fender serial number lookup. I would be happy to take a look at your guitar and offer my opinion of year, condition, originality, etc. If you're curious about how much I would value your Fender then you can contact me here: Sell a Fender.
Fender Jazzmaster 1961
By 1961, the three year old Fender Jazzmaster model was the company's top of the line professional grade solid body electric guitar. Like the Stratocaster, its standard finish color was Sunburst, but it was also available in "Blond and custom colors" at a slight upcharge. Blond was the standard color for the company's original flagship model the Telecaster, but it was an uncommon option on the Jazzmaster model. Fender's Blond finish is different from the similar Olympic White custom color in that it is always semi-translucent and over an Ash body. Fender utilized Alder wood for the bodies of guitars finished in Sunburst and opaque custom colors.
1961 was also the last full year for the short lived slab Rosewood fretboard on the Fender Jazzmaster and rest of the solid body line. Fender debuted the slab Rosewood fretboard in 1958 which is visible at both ends of the neck. Take a look at the above picture of this 1961 Fender Jazzmaster and see how the dark Rosewood curves outward toward the top of the neck where it meets the Maple just above the nut. The slab Rosewood fretboard was phased out in favor of the veneer Rosewood fretboard in mid 1962.
Fender Jazzmaster 1961 Values
Fender guitar collectors gauge the value of a Fender Jazzmaster generally based off of the same set of features: year, color, condition, and originality. I am currently looking for vintage Fender Jazzmaster guitars from the 1950s and 1960s. You can contact me here if you're interested in finding out how much I would value your Fender Jazzmaster: Sell a Fender.
It's important to accurately date a Fender Jazzmaster before trying to find its value. It's best to look for the value of Jazzmaster guitars from the same year since guitar collectors will value certain years higher than others. My favorite year for the Jazzmaster is 1958 so I will pay more for a guitar from that year than other years.
Fender Jazzmaster values also differ significantly on the exact color (if they still have their original finish). The value of a Jazzmaster will increase based on how difficult it is for the collector to find that color. It's much easier to find a Sunburst Jazzmaster than it is to find one in Blond. It's far more difficult to find a custom color with gold hardware, so values for those guitars may far exceed values for more common variations. Check out this Fender Jazzmaster 1960 Black with Gold Hardware.
As with most vintage collectibles, condition and originality will heavily effect the value of a Fender Jazzmaster. Most Fender guitar collectors will value a guitar that is all original and in nice condition over one that is heavily worn. Condition can be a subjective aspect so it's important to have an expert inspect your guitar.