Fender Custom Shop’s Front Row Legend Esquire is built by Master Builder Yuriy Shishkov and each one is made from 100-year-old Alaskan yellow cedar from legendary US venue the Hollywood Bowl.
Front Row Legend Esquire
Okay, this is a ridiculous guitar, but I have a confession to make. I love it.
Yes, I know it’s a bit of old seat, I know it will be overpriced beyond belief and I know it will end up in a collectors cabinet, but still, I think it looks cool as f**k. Part of me has come to appreciate single pickup Esquires and my main guitar for the last few months has been a home made, one piece swamp ash bodied, maple necked guitar which I lovingly built last year and recently got back from my brother, as I had loaned it to him whilst I fixed up his old Strat for him.
That means I’m looking at this guitar with my heart and not my head.
Hardware-wise, this is a ’60s-style Oval C-shaped quartersawn maple neck with a traditional 7.25” fingerboard radius and fitted with vintage frets. It has an original specification Broadcaster bridge pickup (Esquires and Telecasters were originally called Broadcaster until Gretsch asked them nicely to not use the name anymore, as they had a drum kit with a similar name at the time) and oxidised brass hardware, plus a push-pull volume pot.
The cool bit here, of course, is that 100-year-old yellow cedar wood that Yuriy Shishkov has used for the main body. He has chosen pieces of timber with the original seat numbers showing. Expect knots, cracks and old bolt holes galore in these babies!
Some famous bums may have sat on these guitars at some point – maybe Fender Custom Shop has factored that in to the horrendous price!
RRP – GBP 10,089
Fender Custom Shop main site