Tony’s Matons (no, not me)

A guy with a great name and a great taste in guitars.

I got an email today from guitarnerd reader, Tony N, who happens to own some sweet looking Matons. The first is a rare Big Ben Bass, which looks to be different to the BB’s I’ve already featured on guitarnerd. Tony bought this from a mate of his in the 90’s who’d had it stored in his chook shed! Unlike the others, this BB has no body or neck binding, and dot inlays instead of squares.

The body also seems to be more sculptured due to the lack of body binding. It looks a lot more comfortable and ‘organic’. Goddamn I love these basses.

Next up is an absolutely beautiful sharkbite Fyrbyrd in the classic Maton red. Tony found this on eBay in Brisbane 5 years ago…

“I always wanted one of these – when I first started playing guitar in the early sixties they were 120 pounds ($240) which was a lot of money then and way out of reach for a 14 year old school boy. They were the poor guys Strat in those days – Living in Tassie you couldn’t try a Strat in the shop – had to order one from Melbourne – and they were 250 pounds!”

Tony’s Fyrbyrd still sports all the rare stickers of which Fyrbyrd owners usually have one or two missing. He even has the rare round ‘Guitars by Maton – Quality Instruments’ sticker near the top horn, which mine is missing. I’ve got a theory that the scratchplate is actually circular at this point due to that sticker… so it’s supposed to be there as a permanent feature. Unfortunately, it looks like most Fyrbyrd owners ended up peeling them off, as on mine.

Tony’s Fyrbyrd has a bit of wear on the back, which shows off some of the Queensland Pine that these little beauties were made of. The buckle wear is in a weird spot… not in the usual place if the guitar was hung low, Keith Richards style. I’m guessing the original owner played this guitar 60’s style… nice and high, directly under their armpits.

Thanks to Tony for sharing his great Matons with us. It’s good to see another Big Ben is out there… hopefully more will pop up in the future.