Five Fascinating Facts About Leo Fender and G&L Guitars

Author:
Publish date:
Image placeholder title

Leo Fender is so essential to the development of the electric guitar that had he not been born — well, let's just say that obsessed guitar players don't even want to think about a world without Leo Fender in it.

But did you know that the ever-curious and evolving Fender closed his career with a bevy of important innovations at his final company, G&L Guitars?

And there's even more to discover. Read on...

1. G&L Stands for George (Fullerton) and Leo (Fender)

In 1979, Leo and his long-time collaborator George Fullerton — the two began working together in 1948 — founded G&L Guitars. This was the final act for these two giants of the guitar, and it was at G&L where the last stage of their design evolutions and technical innovations were crafted.

Image placeholder title

2. The G&L Factory Is Still In Fullerton, California
Way back at the end of the 1970s, Leo Fender bought land in Fullerton, California to build a factory that would allow him to experiment with his new designs. G&L still sits proudly in the very same location where Leo went to work each day, and now the street bears his name, Fender Avenue. 

Image placeholder title

3. Leo Fender's Office at G&L Is Just the Way He Left It

When Fender left his G&L office for the last time—he died on March 21, 1991—it stayed exactly the way it was as he was tinkering with new ideas right up until he passed away. Nothing was moved, touched, or cleaned up—including his favorite peanut cans. The office remains as a fitting tribute to a great mind.

Image placeholder title

4. G&L Instruments Are Still Largely Handmade on Leo's Own Machines

When Leo Fender started G&L, he hand built a lot of the machines he needed to manufacture the company's guitars and basses. Those machines—such as this spindle sander—remain in the factory, and are used daily to create every G&L instrument.

Image placeholder title

5. G&L Is a Custom Shop!

To this day, there is nothing "stock" about a G&L instrument. Players can choose from a vast list of options to make "their" G&L truly their own.

Image placeholder title

RELATED