HOLLYWOOD, Calif. (August 29, 2023) — Today, Fender Musical Instruments Corporation (FMIC) and the Fender Custom Shop (FCS) announce the launch of the Limited Edition Waylon Jennings Telecaster®, Pedal and Accessories Collection – which include a Telecaster® case, a signature strap and pickguards – honoring the late singer-songwriter and musician. From playing bass with Buddy Holly in the late-‘50s to writing and performing with The Highwaymen well into the ‘90s, Waylon Jennings etched a legacy in music history unlike any other. The ‘Outlaw Country’ pioneer was rarely seen without a Fender guitar in hand—and more often than not, it was his prized, leather-clad 1954 Telecaster®. FCS Masterbuilder Dave Brown worked closely with the Jennings family estate to replicate even the smallest details of Waylon’s iconic guitar after deconstructing the original.
Waylon Jennings made and performed music for over 40 years, blazing new trails for the country genre and leaving behind a unique musical legacy. He started playing guitar when he was 8 years old and his first performance was on the radio with his first band, The Texas Longhorns, at age fourteen. At sixteen, Jennings left high school determined to pursue music and a few years later Buddy Holly arranged his first recording session. Throughout his career, Jennings consistently topped charts and received awards including induction into the Country Music Hall of Fame and Male Vocalist of the Year, both from the Country Music Association. Although the country legend passed away over 20 years ago at age 64, the impact he left on the genre is still felt today. Today, Waylon’s legacy lives on through his son, two-time Grammy winner Shooter Jennings, who’s released 11 studio albums and produced dozens of songs spanning across multiple genres and many different artists including Tanya Tucker and Brandi Carlile.
“This collection means so much to my father’s legacy. You would never find him without his Telecaster, and this Custom collection is a beautiful way to continue honoring him,” said Shooter Jennings. “The Fender Custom Shop model is spot on, and it’s amazing to think that players will be able to honor my dad by playing on a replica that’s so identical to his.”
The Limited Edition Waylon Jennings Telecaster® is designed to replicate Jennings’s original model down to the smallest of details. The 2-piece ash body is finished in period-correct Butterscotch Blonde before being wrapped in the distinctive, hand-tooled leather cover and paired with a 10/56 “V”-shaped, one-piece quartersawn maple neck. Custom Shop Hand-Wound ’50/’51 Blackguard pickups provide unmistakable early-‘50s Telecaster® tones with clear, crisp highs with well-balanced midrange and low end.
“Waylon Jennings’ 1954 Telecaster® is instantly recognizable, both in style and sound, and it was an honor to work with Shooter and the rest of the Jennings family to recreate an instrument that helped define Waylon’s career,” said Dave Brown, Masterbuilder, Fender Custom Shop. “The original Telecaster®was gifted to Waylon back in the 60s which he eventually had wrapped in a hand-tooled leather. I was excited to feature its incredible specs, including the banjo tuner that allows players to detune the low E enabling them to drop to a low D. The Telecaster®, the pedal and accessories from the capsule collection pay a beautiful tribute to Waylon’s musical legacy.”
Brown was able to deconstruct the original guitar with the permission of Shooter Jennings in order to better capture the authenticity of Waylon Jennings’ iconic Telecaster® and pay homage to the legend. Brown knew that fans would appreciate its originality and its ability to stay true to the actual guitar.
To complement the release of the Limited Edition Waylon Jennings Telecaster®, Fender is also launching an accessories capsule inspired by the artists’ impeccable sound and style which includes:
- The Waylon Jennings Phaser provides three distinct flavors of phasing by switching between two, four or six phase stages. When combined with the Range and Feedback Controls, these three phase voices cover the gamut of phasing tones used by Jennings on stage and in studio.
- Beautifully wrapped in western tooled vinyl, the durable 3-ply wood construction of the Telecaster® case provides long-lasting protection for the guitar while exuding a rugged, edgy appeal.
- Crafted from premium high-grain leather, this fully adjustable strap offers maximum durability and comfort while you play. Join the ranks of outlaw country rebels everywhere with the Waylon Jennings Signature Leather Strap—the perfect way to pay homage to Waylon’s rebellious spirit and iconic style.
- Featuring embossed leather in a stylish tooled leather pattern, this replacement pickguard is the perfect way to customize your Tele. Join the ranks of outlaw country rebels everywhere with the Waylon Jennings Leather Pickguard and pay homage toWaylon’s rebellious spirit and iconic style
The Fender Custom Shop Limited Artist series celebrates the storied guitars of legendary musicians by building recreations of their instruments in exacting detail. Based on close examination of the original guitars, every nuance is noted and incorporated into the build. Reverse-engineering the model, vintage, wood, hardware, electronics, finish and player customizations are all vital to the process. Most importantly, the player’s wear patterns are recorded: every nick, scratch, gouge and bump are vital to the authenticity of the recreation–they are mapped and documented with precision.
To learn more and view product descriptions, click HERE. Product and lifestyle images of the Fender Custom Shop Limited Edition Waylon Jennings Telecaster guitar and The Waylon Jennings Capsule Collection can be found HERE.
For technical specs, additional information on new Fender Custom Shop releases and to find a retail partner near you, visit www.fendercustomshop.com. Join the conversation on social media by following @Fender and @FenderCustomShop.