As far as iconic guitar brands go, Rickenbacker is fairly low-key, typically only releasing limited-edition spins on its classic electric guitars and basses here and there.
One of the company's latest limited-edition runs, though, is a particularly spectacular, and daring, one.
It all started when Rickenbacker Production Manager Ben Hall posted a metallic purple 330 guitar to the company's Facebook page in May 2021. The guitar – finished in what Hall at the time called “Grape Jelly” – had been commissioned for a limited stateside run, but – as reported by Guitar World – was soon expanded to the United Kingdom, after U.K. distributor Rosetti ordered 25 of the purple 330s for distribution overseas.
Aside from the unorthodox finish, the limited-edition model is in many ways a typical 330. For instance, there's the familiar semi-acoustic maple "crescent moon cutaway" body with a "cat’s eye" soundhole, and a three-ply maple/walnut neck.
Also carried over from a typical 330 is the two-tier pickguard, and the two Hi-Gain single-coil pickups run via a five-knob control layout (including the famous neck pickup-exclusive blend switch).
The purple 330, though, sports a Richlite fretboard rather than the usual lacquered rosewood, with a black pickguard and black hardware replacing the usual nickel hardware and white double pickguards, respectively.
The Rickenbacker Midnight Purple 330 was listed by retailers at $2,799 in the States, but seems to have, unsurprisingly, completely sold out. Unfortunately, UK retailers – who listed the guitar at £2,999 – also seem to be out of stock of the limited-edition instrument.
For more on all things Rickenbacker in the meantime, visit the company's website.
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Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com and GuitarPlayer.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.