The Red Hot Chili Pepper’s bass player and original founding member gets his own signature Jazz bass. Based upon Flea’s original Shell Pink ’61 Jazz Bass, the new Fender Road Worn signature model has just been launched.
The actual ’61 Jazz Bass that Flea owns is adorned with a D Boon sticker or two. For those of you not familiar with D Boon, he was one of the Minutemen, a band close to his heart. Some vintage collectors seem a bit put out that Flea owns a very rare ’61 in Shell Pink and that he has placed stickers on the instrument. I’m pretty sure Flea couldn’t care less, as he played it exclusively on the band’s Stadium Arcadium album.
Funk, punk n stuff
Known for his tight funky percussive style, Flea is a punk at heart, so likes a good solid working tool. This new model has a vintage C-profile maple neck. a rosewood fretboard with a 7.25″ radius and 20 frets, which are all copied from his original ’61 model.
The two pickups both feature dual concentric Volume and Tone controls for each pickup. This allows you to blend the two outputs together and so gives a lot of control from a very simple layout. The pickups themselves are the Fender Pure Vintage 64 single coils.
The original guitar was Shell Pink, a very rare finish for a ’61 Jazz Bass. Flea’s original guitar has more of a yellow tint these days where the lacquer has aged and yellowed with time. This new ‘Road Worn’ model has lots of ageing to simulate the wear and tear of his actual bass. You also get a limited neck plate with the word ‘FLEA’ inscribed into it, plus a picture of a very toothy grin, which was drawn by Flea himself.
So, if you are a fan of the RHCP or just like vintage ’61 Shell Pink Fender Jazz basses, then you might like this guitar. I really like the colour myself and think it looks great with the tortoise shell pick guard and chrome hardware. I’m not so sure about the ageing, but then it is based upon his original, so I can live with it. I might have to put my own stickers on, though.
RRP EUR €1,135 inc Fender gig bag (but you’ll have to get your own stickers…)
Flea Signature Jazz Bass: Fender site