Fender launch signature Mustang for Death Cab For Cutie’s Ben Gibbard
02.03.2021

Fender launch signature Mustang for Death Cab For Cutie’s Ben Gibbard

Words by Will Brewster

It's the company's second signature 'Stand following their classic Kurt Cobain model.

Fender have today launched out with their second Artist Signature model for the year, debuting a signature ’70s-spec Mustang for Death Cab For Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard.

Summary

  • The Fender Ben Gibbard Mustang is modelled upon a ’70s-spec Mustang favoured for onstage use by the iconic indie rocker.
  • The short-scale signature guitar features a chambered ash body, one-piece maple neck and custom vintage-voiced pickups with a number of tone and hardware modifications.
  • Priced at $2,099 AUD, the Ben Gibbard Mustang is available now at all good Fender dealers.

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Fender Ben Gibbard Mustang

Gibbard, who was also a member of indie pop supergroup The Postal Service in addition to helming Death Cab For Cutie for the better part of 25 years, is revered in the music industry for his intimate and melodic approach to songwriting. He’s been seen slinging a ’70s Mustang when playing with the band for several years, and now, Fender look to honour that onstage loyalty with their new Signature model, which was initially unveiled earlier this year at NAMM 2021.

A recreation of Gibbard’s own touring workhorse, the Fender Ben Gibbard Mustang puts a signature spin on the tried-and-true offset to make it all the more versatile as a live and studio instrument.

Sticking true to the looks of those classic 1970s Mustangs, the guitar features a Natural-finished 24″ ash body with a one-piece C-shaped maple neck and a 9.5″ maple fretboard with 22 frets. However, the body of the guitar is notably chambered to alleviate the weight of the ash body, which also helps to enhance the overall resonance of the guitar.

In the electronics department, the Ben Gibbard Mustang boasts a pair of custom vintage-inspired Ben Gibbard Mustang pickups, which are voiced to emulate those found in the Death Cab For Cutie frontman’s own guitar.

These are controlled by a single volume knob and a three-way rotary pickup selector switch, which is disguised as a conventional tone control – meaning no finicky rocker switches on the upper bout of the pickguard for you to fumble with.

The guitar also makes use of a Mustang bridge with a modified hardtail, which assists in maintaining the intonation of the guitar as well as improving its sustain.

Other appointments include a synthetic bone nut and vintage-style Fender tuners, with the guitar being adorned with Gibbard’s signature behind the headstock and also shipping with strap locks and a Fender gig bag.

“Growing up as a kid I always wanted to own a Fender but I couldn’t afford one until much later in life. It’s a dream come true to design my own signature model,” said Ben Gibbard of the signature Mustang.

“Over the years I’ve owned many different guitars, but my Mustang models have always been my favourites. Creating a custom version that is a replica of what I play on stage was an opportunity I could never pass up.

“I wanted to create something that would mimic all the augmentations I’ve made on my live instruments, something you can just pick up off the rack and everything is intuitive. Maybe this player wants to sing and play guitar at the same time, or perhaps they just want to play a guitar that makes navigating tone simple.”

Check out the Ben Gibbard Signature Mustang in further detail over at the Fender website today.