Every guitar has a serial number – a unique identifier that can tell you what it is, where is made, and when.
As with everything else that had come off the Johnny Marr Jag I was looking at on ebay, the neck plate was up for grabs too. The neck plate is a small metal plate with the serial number engraved on it. This is not important in terms of a guitar’s utility. It has no bearing on the sound or playability whatsoever.
At best it’s a provenance thing, allowing you to demonstrate a guitar’s authenticity. Now, I’d already decided that remaining authentic wasn’t important… I was planning on a re-spray, after all. I’d no intention of trying to pass the thing off as an authentic Johnny Marr Jag.
Then I thought, what’s to stop someone else buying the neck plate, attaching it to a regular Jaguar, and then trying to pass that off as a Johnny Marr Signature Edition? And if that same person got hold of that switch I’d mentioned previously, they’d have a hybrid that could look like the real thing.
From that moment on things took a different turn for me and the whole thing started to feel like a bit of a mission.
I imagined some shadowy dude somewhere or other planning to defraud someone by selling them a crappy old regular Jaguar with a few authentic Johnny Marr Jag parts attached to it.
Was I going to let that happen..? I should coco. Take that, Mr Shadowy Dude!
Image copyright: ArtBrom from Seattle – 1966 Fender Telecaster (Creative Commons)