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Author Topic: Carl's 63 Fender Jaguar  (Read 14613 times)
Ed Roach
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« on: August 16, 2012, 02:43:16 PM »

A friend & neighbor, (who, ironically, is in a band with an old friend of Dennis), said they are going nuts on some Fender site, wondering what became of Carl's '63 Jaguar.  Told him I'd ask over here
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« Reply #1 on: August 16, 2012, 03:10:28 PM »

According to Stephen Desper, Steve Korthoff would know about the early instruments. Check out this thread, maybe there is even something said about it (been a while since I last looked at it).

http://smileysmile.net/board/index.php/topic,258.0.html
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« Reply #2 on: August 16, 2012, 04:05:54 PM »

I believe it was stolen in late '64 or early '65. They had a bunch of guitars stolen while touring the US eastern cities around that time.
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« Reply #3 on: August 16, 2012, 07:33:29 PM »

I believe it was stolen in late '64 or early '65. They had a bunch of guitars stolen while touring the US eastern cities around that time.

 Probably a stupid question, but, Does anyone in the Carl/BBs world have the serial number for his guitar( plus any others that were stolen) to check against ones that come up for sale?
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Joshilyn Hoisington
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« Reply #4 on: August 16, 2012, 07:39:06 PM »

Anybody know where Brian's white Fender bass is these days?
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« Reply #5 on: August 16, 2012, 10:31:07 PM »

I hope cross-posting of forum discussions is allowed, because here is the discussion going on about Carl's guitars:

http://gretschpages.com/forum/other-guitars/where-exactly-is-carl-wilsons-olympic-white-jaguar-today/54225/page1/

A great discussion. Looks like some minds were blown over there with new info. And the same questions asked, Re:Brian's bass, over there as were asked here. Add my voice...what ever happened to that bass, the Beach Boys' "community bass" from the 60's?

BTW, the musician who started that thread on the guitar forum was a really cool and knowledgeable regular board poster, and played in an excellent Beach Boys tribute band in the Mass. area...wondering if he posts here under a different name? I also met him post-show as we were all waiting with passes to meet Brian's band at the Boston Smile performance.
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« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2012, 07:54:08 AM »

Does anyone have any further info on the late 64-early 65 theft of instruments which was mentioned? "A bunch of guitars" could mean anything, yet compare the available photos and video clips from 63-66 and it would appear that several of the most prominent instruments, i.e. Brian's P-Bass, survived into '66...or am I missing something? What exactly got stolen?

Looking close at the info, it would either be a case of Carl having bought or received (as a prominent Fender endorser) more than one Olympic White Jaguar, which would account for the several on public display. That is the simple explanation, made more probable because Carl was all over Fender's advertising around that time. Or, it could be a case of folks claiming something was Carl's personal guitar when it was the exact model but not Carl's stage instrument.
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Jon Stebbins
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« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2012, 09:29:43 AM »

While in the process of writing a new Beach Boys book with Ian Rusten that covers their touring history in a day by day fashion there is ample evidence put forth in the press accounts of the day and from their crew (Steve Korthoff included) that several Beach Boys guitars were stolen over the course of multiple incidents in the '64 to '66 period. Two we know of for sure are Al's original white strat, and one of Carl's Rickenbackers. Carl also used a white Fender XII in '65 that suddenly disappears. That may have been stolen too, or may have been put aside when a new Rick was available. But its documented that Beach Boys guitars were stolen. Don't ask me the specific dates of each as I'm not pouring through 225,000 words this morning to nail this down. It will all be there in black and white when the book is out. Regarding my previous post...Since the Jag kind of disappears from the BB's guitar arsenal in early '65 my common sense tells me perhaps that was one of the instruments that was stolen. i don't have any evidence other than the fact we know thefts of Beach Boys guitars are reported in the press during that general period and the Jag is no longer around in concert photos. Maybe Carl just stuck it in a case and put it away.
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Jon Stebbins
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« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2012, 09:37:38 AM »

One other thing I'm wondering about. Are we certain Carl's original Jag is a '63 model? Just asking because I have a photo of him playing it in Fall '62. Were the '63 models introduced in '62?
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« Reply #9 on: August 17, 2012, 09:54:19 AM »

One other thing I'm wondering about. Are we certain Carl's original Jag is a '63 model? Just asking because I have a photo of him playing it in Fall '62. Were the '63 models introduced in '62?

Thanks for all the info Jon, and I'll be excited to see the book!

I believe certain companies' new models would be released and available in advance, just as a new line of cars for 2013 will be introduced in 2012. And the fact that the Beach Boys were close to Fender's factory might suggest Carl would have gotten his guitar "factory fresh", before they shipped to retailers. Honestly, I'm just going on general info, but there are folks who could be contacted that have all of that info much closer at hand (I'm thinking any number of historians or collectors in Vintage Guitar magazine who specialize in Fender).

The issue of dating vintage guitars without having a serial number available (plus neck and body date stamps) can be close to impossible - and even having clear photos doesn't always work because sometimes certain prominent parts would be nicked from previous production runs and put on later guitars - not all the time, but enough to be frustrating. So you might have, say, a 1963 guitar date-checked and all, but the neck might date from 1962, yet the guitar left the factory that way in late 63. People would think "The dates don't match, they must have swapped necks at some point, this is a fake, etc..." when in reality the factory would often grab what they had in stock and bolt them together.

***But ultimately if the issue of Carl's original Fender Jaguar is discussed, and someone claims to have it or whatever...and we know that guitar was stolen back in late-64/65 since no photos of Carl holding it exist after a certain time, wouldn't that suggest whichever Jaguar guitars Carl or those connected to him have sold or displayed as "original" may not be exactly that one he's pictured or filmed with? Because if it were stolen in 64-65, what the heck are those multiple guitars displayed at the Hard Rock Cafe?
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Ed Roach
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« Reply #10 on: August 17, 2012, 11:24:07 AM »


Funny enough, this is the thread that caused my friend to come to me about the Jaguar.  Interesting that Billy was answering questions about the guitars back in the 90's.  Thanks for all the info from everyone
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Ed Roach
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« Reply #11 on: August 17, 2012, 12:37:06 PM »

Btw, my friend & neighbor posted a picture I sent him on that site, of me standing in front of a guitar display at the 1964 World's Fair.  I remember being so knocked out to see Carl's guitar on the wall, next to Johnny Cash's & several other historical instruments.  http://gretschpages.com/forum/other-guitars/where-exactly-is-carl-wilsons-olympic-white-jaguar-today/54225/page1/
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« Reply #12 on: August 17, 2012, 01:55:09 PM »

While in the process of writing a new Beach Boys book with Ian Rusten that covers their touring history in a day by day fashion

That sounds great Jon ! Ian really knows his stuff. I'm always amazed how much work and love for detail he puts into his research.
If you can reveal that at this point: will it focus on a specific time or go all through the decades?
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a diseased bunch of mo'fos if there ever was one… their beauty is so awesome that listening to them at their best is like being in some vast dream cathedral decorated with a thousand gleaming American pop culture icons.

- Lester Bangs on The Beach Boys


PRO SHOT BEACH BOYS CONCERTS - LIST


To sum it up, they blew it, they blew it consistently, they continue to blow it, it is tragic and this pathological problem caused The Beach Boys' greatest music to be so underrated by the general public.

- Jack Rieley
Jon Stebbins
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« Reply #13 on: August 17, 2012, 03:21:47 PM »

While in the process of writing a new Beach Boys book with Ian Rusten that covers their touring history in a day by day fashion

That sounds great Jon ! Ian really knows his stuff. I'm always amazed how much work and love for detail he puts into his research.
If you can reveal that at this point: will it focus on a specific time or go all through the decades?
You're right about Ian. He did amazing research for this project. It goes through all the decades, but with a highly detailed focus on '61 - '85, after that it becomes increasingly streamlined but all the years are well represented. Solo stuff too. We'll be officially announcing this book soon. I kind of let the cat out of the bag here.
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« Reply #14 on: August 17, 2012, 04:50:12 PM »

While in the process of writing a new Beach Boys book with Ian Rusten that covers their touring history in a day by day fashion

That sounds great Jon ! Ian really knows his stuff. I'm always amazed how much work and love for detail he puts into his research.
If you can reveal that at this point: will it focus on a specific time or go all through the decades?
You're right about Ian. He did amazing research for this project. It goes through all the decades, but with a highly detailed focus on '61 - '85, after that it becomes increasingly streamlined but all the years are well represented. Solo stuff too. We'll be officially announcing this book soon. I kind of let the cat out of the bag here.

a christmas release?
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« Reply #15 on: August 18, 2012, 01:02:55 AM »

I believe it was stolen in late '64 or early '65. They had a bunch of guitars stolen while touring the US eastern cities around that time.

 Probably a stupid question, but, Does anyone in the Carl/BBs world have the serial number for his guitar( plus any others that were stolen) to check against ones that come up for sale?

unfortunately, even if someone had the serial numbers, it wouldn't really do much good on it's own, as they are stamped on the neckplate, which is easily swapped !
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guitarfool2002
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« Reply #16 on: August 18, 2012, 11:39:59 AM »

I believe it was stolen in late '64 or early '65. They had a bunch of guitars stolen while touring the US eastern cities around that time.

 Probably a stupid question, but, Does anyone in the Carl/BBs world have the serial number for his guitar( plus any others that were stolen) to check against ones that come up for sale?

unfortunately, even if someone had the serial numbers, it wouldn't really do much good on it's own, as they are stamped on the neckplate, which is easily swapped !

Right, the serial number doesn't mean much ultimately, if someone really wanted to be a crook and alter the history of something. The only way to truly check dates, for example, is to remove the neck and check the writing/dating of the neck with the writing/dating of the body - all things that you have to do to check accuracy, and even then it's not flawless because Fenders neck dates often were older runs than the bodies they attached them to, and it gets confusing.

But one thing for sure, if you're looking at a 1963 Jaguar, and the neck is signed/dated 1965, someone got hosed. Or the neck was replaced.

It's tough to trust the vintage guitar market because the few dishonest folks ruin the reputation of the solid dealers. A few years ago I was at a pretty large guitar collectors' convention, actually standing in front of a 58 or 59 sunburst Les Paul Standard with a price tag around $200,000, when a few guys walked up to the dealer's stand next to the Les Paul. There was a valuable Stratocaster, I believe late 50's, which someone was inspecting close. Out of nowhere, one of the group of guys got excited/annoyed and declared that Strat was his guitar which had been stolen years ago. Everyone was shocked. This guy calmed down, and described exact details of certain damage, flaws, and something inside that would ID it. Sure enough, the dealer started taking it apart, and the details were there just as described. That was a "holy sh*t" moment, and I didn't stick around to see what happened. I hope that dude got his long-lost Strat back at some point.

It ruined a lot of my faith in the high-end guitar market, not that I have enough disposable income to get into it in any capacity beyond getting lucky finds at various places, but hearing all this about Carl's once-stolen guitar brought it back. Well, that and the "American Pickers" coming across a once-in-a-lifetime deal a guy found on a Gretsch at a yard sale, and that turned out to be stolen as well.  Smiley

Busting the myth, destroying the legend, etc.
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guitarfool2002
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« Reply #17 on: August 19, 2012, 10:11:08 AM »

One other thing I'm wondering about. Are we certain Carl's original Jag is a '63 model? Just asking because I have a photo of him playing it in Fall '62. Were the '63 models introduced in '62?

Is this the photo?



I'm more than a little confused about a few points so far, after reviewing everything:

First, if that photo is the one, and it's from fall 1962 (or even if another photo showing the Jaguar is, same difference), I have to go with my gut instinct plus common sense and assume Carl is playing a 1962 Jaguar. I'll ignore corporate release dates and model-year releases and common sense says that guitar was 1962 - incidentally 1962 was the first year the Fender Jaguar was offered for sale, and it was Fender's top-of-the-line guitar model, and most expensive.

Big question #1: Where did the information come from that said Carl's Jag was a 1963? If the photo was 1962, and he's shown playing the guitar...that's a '62! It was made in '62, it's a '62 - I wouldn't see how Carl Wilson would have gotten a 1963 model not even available to the public that far in advance in 1962. Or I could be totally wrong.

I had to do a reality check after re-reading my response to the post.

Big question #2: Does anyone know either how many Fender Jaguar guitars in Olympic White custom finish Carl Wilson owned at this time? Or am I reading something incorrectly by seeing what appears to be several Olympic White Jaguars claiming to have been Carl Wilson's guitar showing up at various places?

And which one(s) are hanging on display as shown in that other forum's thread?

Something doesn't jive.

Big Question #3: If one of what could be several of Carl's Fender Jaguars had been stolen as reported in 64-65, then one of them turns up on the collectors' market decades later claiming to have been Carl's Jaguar, it remained a stolen item and should that instrument have not immediately been returned to Carl's family or estate, or at least checked out to determine if it was the 'lost' guitar from the 60's? A moot point if he owned several Jags in '64, or if in the ensuing years Carl got the stolen guitar back.

Big Question #4: When did the Beach Boys officially pick up their Fender endorsement? I ask because we all know in the mid 60's they were an active, public face advertising Fender instruments in print and on the radio. As such, Fender could have made available any number of new, factory-fresh models for them to use in public...either for free(often the case), or at a drastically reduced cost. Whether the band chose to use them is another story (though I think that's where Carl's Fender Electric 12-string came from). So Carl could have had a number of Jags with him...but when exactly did Fender and the Beach Boys enter into that endorsement deal? 1962...'63...'64?
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Jon Stebbins
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« Reply #18 on: August 19, 2012, 10:54:24 AM »

The photo I was referring to is even earlier than the one you posted. Its from the Pendelton shirt era, I know I said Fall in my previous post...but its probably Aug./Sept '62. Carl is playing the white Jag in it. Sorry I can't post it...It will be in the next book.

I agree with this evidence that Carl's Jag was likely a '62 model. I also think its unlikely he had more than one. Just a feeling. The BB's didn't get any whiff of endorsement opportunity, or support from Fender until much later...'65 is when Fender finally started realizing the BB's were their best promoters. '65 is when the first Fender ads featuring the Beach Boys appeared.

The last appearance of the white Jag that I can think of off the top of my head is Al playing it at the TAMI show 10/29/64. I know of no photo with that guitar after that.
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« Reply #19 on: August 19, 2012, 11:51:12 AM »

The photo I was referring to is even earlier than the one you posted. Its from the Pendelton shirt era, I know I said Fall in my previous post...but its probably Aug./Sept '62. Carl is playing the white Jag in it. Sorry I can't post it...It will be in the next book.

I agree with this evidence that Carl's Jag was likely a '62 model. I also think its unlikely he had more than one. Just a feeling. The BB's didn't get any whiff of endorsement opportunity, or support from Fender until much later...'65 is when Fender finally started realizing the BB's were their best promoters. '65 is when the first Fender ads featuring the Beach Boys appeared.

The last appearance of the white Jag that I can think of off the top of my head is Al playing it at the TAMI show 10/29/64. I know of no photo with that guitar after that.

Thanks for the info, and I'll definitely be looking forward to the photo(s) in the new book!

I'd say the dating of the photo you mentioned all but seals the deal, that Carl's Jaguar was indeed a 1962 model. And it didn't seem like much of a possibility that the Beach Boys in 1962 would have wrangled an endorsement deal from Fender before they were even that popular outside of their home area, so it's good to get a clarification on that and date that endorsement closer to 1965.

It also should be mentioned that without an endorsement deal, that particular Fender Jaguar of Carl's was not only a custom color (the headstock was painted to match the body, too...only done on the custom color option), but it was also the "Tiffany" or "Cadillac" of the Fender guitar line in 1962. So not everyone could afford that guitar, and it would be the equivalent of perhaps a 16 year old high-school classmate showing up in 11th grade driving a new Corvette or something.

And if he only had one Jag, which I think is the most likely scenario, and that got stolen, the biggest question of all is still: What the heck are those other guitars labeled as Carl's Jaguar? And was the stolen Jag ever recovered by Carl or his estate?

Thanks again for the info.
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« Reply #20 on: August 19, 2012, 12:27:10 PM »

I think someone should ask Billy Hinsche if he knows more about that topic. He's on BeachBoysBritain and Facebook so it shouldn't be hard to contact him
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PRO SHOT BEACH BOYS CONCERTS - LIST


To sum it up, they blew it, they blew it consistently, they continue to blow it, it is tragic and this pathological problem caused The Beach Boys' greatest music to be so underrated by the general public.

- Jack Rieley
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« Reply #21 on: August 19, 2012, 12:40:52 PM »

The earlier one(s) may have been rented. Brian's bass is a different  color than the one he owned later on. Olympic White was a pretty common color on early '60s Jags.
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Jon Stebbins
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« Reply #22 on: August 19, 2012, 02:04:24 PM »

The earlier one(s) may have been rented. Brian's bass is a different  color than the one he owned later on. Olympic White was a pretty common color on early '60s Jags.
Its well documented that Brian owned a sunburst Fender bass until early 1964 when he switched to the Olympic white model. Al also used the sunburst Fender when subbing for Brian in '63.
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« Reply #23 on: August 19, 2012, 02:07:30 PM »


Remember I have no evidence the Jag was stolen other than it disappears from the Beach Boys stage arsenal right around the same time the press reported Beach Boys guitars being stolen. In reality Carl might have just tired of the guitar and put it in a case and in a closet.
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« Reply #24 on: August 19, 2012, 02:24:20 PM »

When did the Rickenbacker 360/12 first appear?  Might have Carl just come to prefer that?  I'm not as crisp on my guitar history as I once was.
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