The history of the Fender Musicmaster, Duo-Sonic and Mustang

Fender Competition Mustangs
Fender Competition Mustangs (Image credit: Paul Kelly)

”The idea for student model guitars came from [Leo Fender’s business partner] Don Randall,” says Terry. “He’d always been trying to put together a full line so that you could be a Fender user from beginner to pro. And in the mid-50s, the one thing that was missing was a proper student guitar

”In 1955, when this idea came up, they had the [Esquire, Telecaster and Stratocaster] and one of the things Randall was doing was putting on contests for kids where they’d all play in little combos using Fender gear. There are lots of old pictures of little kids playing oversized guitars! 

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Rod Brakes

Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Guitar WorldGuitar Player and MusicRadar in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.