Thursday, January 7, 2010

Fender Stratocaster Tom Delonge Model

I'll make this one quick because I really just bought this guitar to resell. I found it in a pawn shop near my house that was having a half off sale for the last week of the year. I haven't made my way into too many pawn shops lately because A) they mostly just have a bunch of second rate crap these days, and B) they want MORE than retail for the decent stuff they do have. For the life of me I don't understand where they get their pricing. I have ranted about pawn shops on this blog before and got quite a few comments supporting my view. So, I'll leave it at that for now. This time I guess I got lucky.

When I walked in I spotted the Daphne Blue Strat hanging amongst the usual crap. It stood out. I immediately noticed it was a Tom Delonge model. These are easy to spot because they have one pickup and one knob. That's it. Blink-182 style all the way. Now most people would say that this is a lame concept. But I actually like the idea. I'm not the most amazing lead player in the world, though I'm not a bad rhythm player. I usually find one pickup setting on a guitar that I like and pretty much stick with it. That's just me. So, if I could design my own guitar, I'd probably do the same thing...find a pickup I like and connect it to a volume knob and be done with it. BLASPHEMY! Whatever.

So, I asked the lady how much the guitar was and she said it was $700...but they were having a 50% off sale. So, $350 (duh).

I knew this guitar HAD to be worth more than that. She told me that they had actually sold it on eBay the week before and then the guy that won it emailed them asking if he could make payments for 6 months. Who does that?? So, they just wanted it sold. I came home quickly and looked up previously sold Tom Delonge models and figured out that I could make a few bucks by buying it and posting it on eBay. I actually tried to get the lady to come down to $300 but she was a tough cookie. She knew she had me by the balls and she ran with it. I finally agreed to pay the full $350. I asked what kind of case it had and she gave me that typical pawn shop answer..."oh, there's no case with it." Right.

There's never a case that comes with a guitar at a pawn shop, yet miraculously there are tons of cases sitting around in plain sight.

I knew I had a nice spare Fender gig bag at home, so I didn't even get into it. I brought it home and cleaned it up. Amazingly they were trying to sell guitars at this shop, but just left them dirty and sticky and very unappealing. They actually had a decent black MIM Telecaster I could have picked up for $200 but it had sticker residue all over it and the tuning pegs were coated in grime and knobs were was just too easy to see that this guitar had not been cared for in the least. Once I got the Tom Delonge all cleaned up and looking good I posted it on eBay and put a very reasonable (but still nicely profitable) price on it. I think it turned into a great deal for everyone. The guy who bought it today is a big Blink-182 fan and also owns one of the Gibson Tom Delonge hollowbody models as well. So, he's happy. I'm happy. We're all freakin' happy! And now I can try to buy that blonde Fender Blues Junior on Craigslist I saw this afternoon.

It's always something!

One Comes Home

Well, if this isn't the most heartwarming story on this old blog, I don't know what is. Let's go backwards in the wayback machine to the early '90s. My daughter (who is now 20) was just a little tyke and for her 4th or 5th Christmas I wanted to get her something to keep forever. I happened to walk into Moonlight Music in Encinitas, CA and there, hanging on the wall, was a reissue of the Fender Telecaster pink paisley guitar. It was made in the late '80s and I know it had not been in this store for the whole time, so maybe he picked it up NOS from another store or something. I decided that I would get it for my daughter and it could be something she kept forever and hopefully learned to play when she was older.

It's really a cool guitar. Some of you might have man issues with a guitar like this, being pink paisley and all, but keep in mind that it was made famous by James Burton who played with none other than the king of rock n roll himself, Elvis Presley. The original models from the late '60s now command huge dollars...tens of thousands of dollars. (Here is a great link about Paisley Teles). I am not positive, but I believe these reissues from the late '80s may have been the first time these were reissued. The quality is fantastic...they were Made In Japan at a time when the Japan factories ruled. I'm still a fan of the Japanese Fenders and actually prefer them over the USA models. The paisleys have since been reissued a couple of additional times, but the vibe is just not the same as these first reissues. In fact, they have started to command quite a bit of money themselves.

So, sadly my daughter never really took up the guitar. I say sadly mostly because she really has a knack for it and just never wanted to put any time into it. She could accomplish more in 20 minutes of learning than I could in days and days of practice. As she got older the guitar sat in its case in the closet. When she was almost 18 she moved out of the house. She was a tough one. After being out on her own for a year or so I figured she could probably use the money, and a friend of mine had become a huge fan of country star Brad Paisley. I guess if they made a guitar with my last name on it I would probably play one too, much as Brad Paisley had become known for playing original Fender Paisley Telecasters.

So I suggested to my friend that he see if my daughter would be interested in selling the Tele. I gave her my blessing and the deal was done.

I was happy that it had at least gone to a friend of mine and "stayed in the family" so to speak. My friend Rob is a guitar player, but his first instrument is drums. Amazing drummer actually. He loved the paisley Tele and did maintenance on it and kept it sounding fantastic. It's a really great sounding and playing guitar just straight up stock from the factory. So a couple of years has gone by and I have always told Rob that if he should want to sell it to call me first. Yesterday I got the call. Rob needed to unload a guitar and hounded him to sell me the Paisley...bring it back into the fold. After an evening of anguish he finally agreed. I drove over to his house tonight and picked it up and he practically cried handing it over.

The news was leaked to my daughter who is ecstatic that I have managed to bring it back home. I think she may be slightly mistaken's MINE now. I guess she can have it when I'm dead and gone, but until then...