Used by Lee/Thurston/Kim: 1983-1999

  • 1983 -- EBDGBE (She's in a Bad Mood, Burning Spear, Inhuman - LEE)
  • 1984 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Brave Men Run, Death Valley '69, Society is a Hole - LEE) (I Love Her All The Time, Ghost Bitch - THURSTON)
  • 1985 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Brave Men Run, Death Valley '69, I'm Insane - LEE) (I Love Her All The Time, Death Valley '69, Ghost Bitch - THURSTON) & GGDDD#D# (Brother James - THURSTON)
  • 1986 -- F#F#GGAA (White Kross, Tom Violence - THURSTON) (Shaking Hell - KIM) & D#D#C#C#GG (I Love Her All The Time - LEE)


  • 1987 -- GGDDD#D# (Cotton Crown, Stereo Sanctity, Green Light, Brother James, Kill Yr Idols) & EADGBE (Hotwire My Heart)
  • 1988 -- probably CCEBGD
  • 1989 -- CCEBGD (The Sprawl, Cross the Breeze, World Looks Red)
  • 1990 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Catholic Block, Mary Christ, Kool Thing)
  • 1991 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Kool Thing)
  • 1992 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Kool Thing, Shoot, 100%)
  • 1993 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Kool Thing, 100%)
  • 1995 -- F#F#F#F#EB (100%, Becuz, Saucer-Like, Panty Lies)
  • 1996 -- F#F#F#F#EB (100%, Becuz, Saucer-Like, Panty Lies)
  • 1998 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Death Valley '69, Shadow of a Doubt)
  • 1999 -- F#F#F#F#EB (Death Valley '69, Shadow of a Doubt, World Looks Red, She Is Not Alone)


  • This was probably one of the band's highest quality guitars in the early 80s, an interesting Jazzmaster played by everybody in the band at various times. It was modified consistently throughout the 80s and eventually became Thurston's F#F#EB guitar until it was stolen in '99.
  • If you review the earliest pictures of this guitar it's clearly not an off-the-shelf Jazzmaster, and some visitors have theorized that it may be a Vietnam Serviceman copy, which is certainly likely. However, it appears that it may in fact be made primarily of Fender parts, and for sake of simplicity I've decided to just list it as a Fender Jazzmaster.
  • It began with two gold pickups, almost Tele Deluxe in appearance, with four knobs. The January '85 pix reflect this, but by November it had already been stripped down, all of the knobs removed, with only the volume pot remaining, and a lone Dimarzio X2N humbucker in the neck. At some point the pickguard was removed, and the original neck was replaced with a Fender neck (by July '87). In 1988 the guitar's body was given its final makeover, with two Jazzmaster soapbar pickups and a tortoise shell pickguard. The Fender neck was replaced with what might be a Fernandes neck sometime afterward.
  • It's interesting to think that three of the band's earliest guitars (the Drifter, Lee's F-hole Tele, and this one) were still being used on tour over 15 years later, when the theft occurred.
  • Gauges for F#F#F#F#EB: .042 .042 .024 .024 .017 .014
  • Blue body
  • 2 gold pickups originally, then one Dimarzio X2N neck pickup (late '85), then 2 soapbars ('88 onwards).
  • White pickguard originally, then a dark tortoise ('88).
  • Rosewood fretboard, at least 3 different necks
  • 1 toggle switch, removed, reinstalled '88
  • 4 knobs, eventually just volume
  • Trem bar
  • White "Gremlins" sticker
  • Backwards "NECROS" stickers on headstock in '85.
  • Yellow rectangular sticker (later)
  • "deep" sticker (later)
  • Serial # -- SY006
  • Used by Thurston in "Death Valley '69" and "Disappearer" videos
  • Listed as "BLUE" on '95/'98/'99 set lists.

    Return to the Sonic Youth Gear Guide.