G&L - How It All Began
G&L was founded in 1979 by the legendary Leo Fender. Yes, this is the same Leo who created Fender in 1946 and came up with such familiar guitars as the Stratocaster, Telecaster, Precision bass and much more...
However, not everyone knows that Leo sold his first company, Fender Musical Instruments, back in 1965 for a cosmic $13 million at that time. But his story didn't end there. Absolutely crazy, in a good way, he continued to explore the guitar sound every free minute. So his work eventually led to the birth of Music Man guitars in 1976 and then G&L in 1979
In general, when designing his new guitars, Leo followed the direction he set at the beginning of his career - he always tried to create guitars with the most juicy, detailed, bright sound. His early instruments had countless hits recorded on them, and they fetch fabulous prices at auctions. But he didn't stop there. G&L guitars have a number of key features:
The new pickups are built on the basis of ceramic magnets with metal magnetic conductors, each of which is individually adjustable in height, in contrast to the classic "Fender" pickups. The changes also affected the geometry of the pickup, the type of copper in the winding, and its cross-section. Leo has developed a whole line of MFD pickups to emphasize the desired sound features in each guitar.
Dual Fulcrum Tremolo
Leo was not satisfied with the stability of the traditional 6-screw tremolo and he developed a completely new Dual Fulcrum 2-screw system specifically for G&L guitars. At the same time, he expanded the range of his work. Today, the two-bolt tremolo is already the industry standard.
Fixed bridges were not abandoned by Leo. The new bridge is massive and rooted deep into the body. And on the side, it has a special clamping screw that "cements" all the saddles. This allows maximum vibration and sustain to be retained. Guitars with Saddle-Lock bridges tend to sound quite loud even when unplugged.
In fact, there are much more nuances: tuning, soldering, selection of wood - all this is worthy of attention separately, literally every aspect of his new guitars Leo created virtually from scratch. All this gives G&L guitars their completely original, recognizable sound - dense, explosive, hysterical, and daring.
And yet, as in any great company, the main thing is not patents, the main thing is the people who work there and how they treat their business. Moreover, until now, every G&L guitar at the factory in America is made only by hands. Moreover, some production processes still use machines created by the hands of Leo himself. To the right is his personal pickup winding machine that is still used today.
Look at this cheerful granny. Her name is Carmen Gutierrez. She began working with Leo in 1976 and to this day she (just think about it!) single-handedly wires and solders EVERY guitar that leaves the factory in Fullerton. So if you are a happy owner of an American G&L - know that it was she who assembles all your pickups and switches :)
In general, G&L is like a big family. Literally everyone who now works at the G&L Factory on Fullerton Avenue in the suburbs of Los Angeles grew up right here.
On the picture there are Leo's wife Phyllis Fender and two brothers Johnny and David McLaren who now adays run G&L. Leo was almost like a second father to them. When they were 15 years old, Leo gave them a scolding for running around the shop, and too close to the workbenches. He taught them everything he knew, and now they continue his work with dignity.
G&L guitars in Acoustic Union
Just like every other guitar in our store all G&L's go through complete inspection and setup by a professional luthier to make sure that every aspect of these amazing instruments is absolutely top notch. Also this is a call for you to spell out all your setup wishes when placing an order. So that the guitar you recieve will be 100% YOURS.