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A very special new Fender Custom Shop 65 Journeyman Relic Strat is now offered for sale at Guitars4You – Released as part of the 2019 collection with a cool ‘aged charcoal frost metallic’ finish, along with a set of very special hand wound 65 pick-ups, with polysol windings and alnico 5 magnets

Lightly aged ‘Journeyman’ character :- My web pics do not do justice to the character and colour of this Strat – It looks far more appetizing when viewed in the flesh –  I fully appreciate that not all guitar players buy into the seriously aged vibe that you’ll find on many  Custom Shop Strats – With this in mind, a Journeyman finish takes on more of a subtle aged approach, that some might say is more authentic – This cool ‘ aged charcoal frost metallic’ finish possesses a worn and faded character, with far less scars, nicks and wear ‘n’ tear, yet you’ll still find plenty of  lacquer checking to capture the aged mojo  – Aged, but not abused, might be a fair remark – Hence you can  buy it and play it, without having to give it the kids gloves treatment, then getting upset regarding any nicks and grazes that it will inevitably acquire – It is generally accepted that a thin base coat and finish allows the guitar to ‘breathe’ so as to maximise the guitars natural vibrant character and this is a big plus factor of the aged approach

Feel/playing performance :-  Whatever magic is in this Strat regarding the playing experience can’t be seen – You feel it – The classic 65 Large C profile instantly feels comfortable, familiar and very much old school from the vintage era, with an extra ounce of meat on it  – It can’t be considered fat, but it possesses a touch more meat than the regular 60’s C profile  – Spec’d with a thin honey tint nitro finish, that has been cut back, just enough, for more of a ‘played in’ satin feel – To further enhance the playing performance, you’ll find a set of jumbo 6105 frets, along with a 9.5″ radius – You can still dig in and attack those big blues bends, but for more intricate licks, this vintage Strat offers a far more slick action – Overall the modern tweaks are subtle yet very effective – It is  a neat tweak from the Custom Shop team, so vintage and slick in one package

Tonal character :- This is pure lush, with a smooth ‘crushed velvet’ character that glistens with sparkling highs, big clear  ‘piano’ lows and mids that are far more transparent – The hand wound ’65’ pick-ups are almost unique to this year, with  vibrant copper coloured polysol windings on alnico V magnets and the first appearance of the grey base – They became the hallmark of the  SRV Lenny Strat and a 65/66 Strat that  Hendrix favoured  – They are loaded with character and expression,  which is more about tonal quality and not power – You’ll still experience the snap and attack that a good Strat is renowned for, but this delivers it in a luxurious way – Even before you plug this Strat into your favourite amp, the unplugged experience will confirm that the select alder body has a strong vibrant voice – As I often quote, ‘it don’t mean  a thing if it ain’t got that ring’ – So if it sounds like a wet cardboard box, then maybe it is best to pass on it – The vibrant acoustic voice ensures that only a quick test drive, through your amp, is required to reveal that it is loaded with soul and expression that shows a melodic character with a bell like chime – Some Strats might possess more bite and balls, couple with a hint of attitude – This Strat is pure lush and as such more of a tender character – On hi-gain amp settings and the Strat on 10, you might find it offers a hint of fizz about it, so just roll off the volume pot, just a touch, until you find that luxurious sweet spot, that still retains all the Strat’s goodness – This can now be your base camp, allowing you to return to 10, as and when you require that extra touch of boost

To me the guitar shows its true colours when you hook it up to an amp with more of a blues/rock overdriven amp setting – Again use the Strat’s volume pot to find the sweet spot and allow this to be your base camp – As such, for chilled out licks and chords you’ll find it cleaner – As such when you require a touch more gain, just wind the Strat back towards 10 – If you still require a touch more boost, then just hit a good boost/overdrive pedal – This approach ensures shed loads of emotion and expression – As I mentioned earlier Strats from this period were popular with SRV (Lenny) and Jimi (Monterey black Strat), but players like John Mayer love these pick-ups as part of his ‘big dipper’ scooped tone –  You can run it through an amp setting that is pure clean, but somehow even a touch of gain adds more character and remember you can still roll off such gain, as required, with a tweak on the volume – This approach still ensure the guitar retains its true expressive qualities – I can go on and on and use a whole load of descriptive words to describe this guitars tonal character, but LUSH sums it up in one word

Full spec and details for this Fender Custom Shop  65 Journeyman Relic Strat :-

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For additional product info, to arrange a showroom visit + viewing, or indeed any other questions, then please do not hesitate to contact me.

Call: 01335 345777 or email: mark@guitars4you.co.uk. Please note that showrooms visits are strictly by appointment only.

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Guitars4You is not another corporate high street guitar store - My selection of premium grade guitars is about quality not quantity. Every guitar has been selected, inspected and approved by me, with particular attention to the set-up and playing performance. Every sale, phone call, email and mail order transaction is handled by me. A journey that is now over 40 years old, has fuelled my knowledge, experience, love, devotion and passion for exceptionally fine guitars.