Music Man Sting Ray II guitar dates from 1977, their second year of guitar production. Its Fender pedigree is quite apparent in the design - you can see how this instrument could represent the next logical development following the Telecaster and the Stratocaster.
The original Music Man guitars were not as well known or as popular as their basses; some would say that this was because they weren't particularly good instruments, but I can't believe this to be true. I've personally seen one in the hands of Doggen Foster (sometime guitarist with Julian Cope and Spiritualized) and he certainly made it sound incredible. Of course this guitar dates from well before Ernie Ball got their mitts on the Music Man brand; their later guitars would become very popular, endorsed by the likes of Eddie Van Halen, Albert Lee, Steve Lukather, and John Petrucci. Note how this pre-Ernie Ball Music Man features a headstock with six machine heads in a line a la Fender, as opposed to the later ridiculously small headstocks with a 4+2 tuner arrangement that Ernie Ball nicked from certain Gretsch and Teisco guitar design from the 1960s and then claimed was their own copyrighted trademark.
Currently listed on eBay with a starting bid of $1,090.
G L Wilson
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