Maton Jazzman Special

A truly unique, spectacular specimen of the species Maton….

A while ago, I was flicking through Google images looking at various cool guitars. It’s a great way of finding some rare photos of rare guitars, hidden in various forums, blogs & auctions. It was in a site about guitar positions that I found this. The Maton to end all Matons.

Now, I’ve seen a few Matons, but I’d never seen anything like this. The body isn’t exactly like any model I’m aware of… it sort of looks like a DC 1500, but the horns are longer. And the gold parts are from a Wedgtail, Fyrbyrd and there’s a bit of Capri in there as well. Plus that white finish with airbrushed lines is wild.

I tracked down the owner, Patrick, and asked if he could send some more photos and any info on his guitar. Here’s what he sent:

I bought this guitar in 1989 from a guy in Kiama, just south of Wollongong. I think it had been floating around that area for a while.

As you can see from the papers it was finished in October 1965. I’ve been told that the serial number 101, means that it was the first one made, that they all start with 10.

The guy also told me, don’t know if it’s true but it’s a great story, that the only made 3 of them and then discovered that they didn’t make cases big enough for it. Hence the hand-made wooden box that I’m lugging it around in, it weighs a ton.

The silver/gold is a great look but it’s not the original paint work. You can’t see on the photo but the paint has been sprayed through the top F hole and covered over the paper work (aaaaah!!!). There are traces of the original paint apparent at the neck, a gross green colour reminiscent of some other old Matons I’ve seen.

I’m pretty sure it’s been re-wired too. It has a very low output and some of the pickup combinations sound a bit odd. When you get it right though it does have a lovely tone. There are three pickup switches, all of them on and off, and another switch that I never use that seems to boost the mids, a bit harsh for my sensitive ears.

It’s got a Bigsby on it, I guess it’s original, certainly doesn’t look out of place. It’s also developed a crack on the soundboard that’s been repaired and doesn’t go right through the wood.

The neck is straight and it plays fine although I’m mainly using it for slide now. You’ll also notice the flower on the headstock that dates it pretty well, I think they only used them for a short time.

It’s had a few owners before me but if anyone else wants it they’ll have to wait till I’m dead and gone.

Thanks Patrick for the great photos & info. I’m still blown away by this guitar… what a beast.