And then, finally, the Japanese started to manufacture their own Fender replicas under the names of such companies as Greco, Fernandes, ESP, Joo Dee, Westminster, Heerby, El Maya, and even Yamaha) so that they could enjoy what America was enjoying, but under their own terms and at theirown cost.
And most importantly, these guitars were easily available from local music shops.
Many of these models were andstill are for Japan only, and not intended for export, and are difficult to purchase direct from Japan, except through private collectors such as myself.
When JV first messaged Steph, she was vacationing in Kiawah, SC.
At this time in Japan, the electric guitar was making its great debut, and Fender guitars were highly sought-after.
Finding itvery difficult to acquire a real USA-made Fender, and finding it extremely expensive, a team of businessmen, guitar enthusiasts and Japanese luthiers banded together and started the Fujigen Gakki guitar factory “lawsuit” division, wherethey had brought in a handful of choice original 1950’s and 1960’s Fenders and dismantled them.
Starting in 1984, the “MIJ” (made in Japan) decade began and continued through 1994.
They were getting more poorly-made instruments as the years wenton and found they were still paying a high price for them.
From the early 1950’s through the late 1970’s, Fender USA had little competition in the guitar arena, in the making andselling of their classic Stratocasters and Telecasters, among other popular models.
As many people know, when the Fender was sold in January 1965 to CBS (Columbia Broadcasting System, Inc.), things changed.
Fender “Squier” guitars were produced at the same time as the Fenders in Japan, but were madeas cheaper versions of the Fenders, to meet the demand for cheaper guitars in Japan and abroad. Fender Japan currently makes more models of Fender guitars than Fender USA does, and most of them are regular production-line models.
Fender Japan also has a Custom Shop and Order-Made division.