This Guitar Is Available As A Fabulous Fake
Seymour W. Duncan is a guitarist and guitar
repairman, but is best known as the man behind
Duncan Company, the manufacturer of guitar
pickups, bass pickups, and effects pedals located in
Santa Barbara, California. Born in New Jersey,
Seymour grew up in the fifties and sixties, during a
time when electric guitar music grew into greater
acceptance. Seymour's teenage passion was focused
upon guitars by a great uncle who introduced him to
the music and legend of Charlie Christian, Chet
Atkins and Les Paul.
The Seymour Duncan Signature Esquire guitar is an accurate replica of
Duncan’s personal 1954 Esquire created by the
Fender Custom Shop.
It features a lightweight solid ash body, special
shaped hard rock maple neck and a custom-designed
pickup built by Duncan himself. Every aspect of the
construction of this guitar was personally overseen
by Duncan, particularly the special wiring.
The Esquire is among the most sought-after instruments in our entire family of Telecaster guitars. Introduced in 1950, it later became the weapon of choice for greats including Jeff Beck and Bruce Springsteen, and has re-emerged time and again in the hands of many other great players.
Seymour began playing clubs and during one show, his Telecaster's lead pickup broke, forcing him to play the rest of the night on the rhythm pickup. Necessity being the mother of invention, Seymour rewound that lead pickup on a record player spinning at 33 1/3 rpm.
While he developed his playing skills, Seymour's knowledge of how guitars work developed at an equally prodigious pace. Seymour took every chance he had to talk with players about guitars, tone and electronics. After spending time with musicians such as Les Paul and Roy Buchanan, Seymour realized that it was his guitar, and not his playing, that prevented him from producing those wonderful tones that defined great players. Suddenly, and forever, Seymour was hooked on the dynamics and character differences of pickups.
As Seymour tinkered devotedly with materials and techniques, his bag of tricks grew and grew. At Les Paul's suggestion, he bolted for England in the late '60s where his intention to play soon mixed with the opportunity to further his pickup research working in the Repair and R&D Departments at the Fender Soundhouse in London. It was here that he did repairs and rewinds for such artists as Jimmy Page, George Harrison, Eric Clapton, David Gilmour, Pete Townshend, Jimi Hendrix, Peter Frampton, and Seymour's guitar hero, Jeff Beck. It was through his work with Beck in particular, that Seymour honed his pickup winding skills—some of Seymour's first signature pickup tones appear on Jeff's early solo albums. Seymour's sabbatical in England resulted in a flock of new fans and friends. Seymour came back to the United States, and eventually settled in California. He established contact with industry luminaries such as Leo Fender, Les Paul, and Seth Lover (inventor of the humbucker pickup) and continued learning about and making pickups. Demand for his custom pickups grew and, in late 1978, together with Cathy Carter Duncan, he started his own company, Seymour Duncan Pickups. Today the company has over 100 employees whose dedication results in the continual refinement of pickup and effects pedal technology.