With its zero be troubled, Maphis-signature shape, and distinctive vibrato arm, this guitar screams Mosrite, but with its salvage luxurious chook’s-ogle maple physique and other appointments.
Sooner than the Mosrite trace turned into as soon as born, its founder, Semie Moseley, turned into as soon as ravishing an self sustaining luthier making an are attempting to effect a splash. In the identical method Paul Reed Smith pitched his pre-factory builds to Carlos Santana and Coronary heart’s Nancy Wilson, Moseley found his first golden ticket in a Southern Californian picker by the name of Joe Maphis.
Aid in the mid-1950s, Moseley obtained fired from Rickenbacker after making a guitar of his salvage. Soon after, he built a three-necked amalgamation that contained a identical old guitar, an octave guitar (one octave increased), and a mandolin—all in a single solidbody electric. The goal turned into as soon as to plan consideration, and attract consideration it did.
Joe Maphis turned into as soon as a flashy country player who led the Town Hall Celebration radio voice, which turned into as soon as beamed in the future of Southern California and into Northern Mexico. Maphis requested a double-neck model (without the mandolin), and from then on Moseley turned into as soon as a identified entity, crafting about one custom-made instrument a month for years.
This discontinuance-up brings the brass nut, ravishing binding, Grover tuners, and sterling silver headstock inlay into focal point.
Later, in 1960, Maphis obtained a correct Moseley-made signature model, with a physique that looked cherish an upside-down Stratocaster. In the early ’60s, the Ventures—the pinnacle-promoting instrumental rock team who helped codify surf song—grew to turned into Mosrite’s distributor. They took a Maphis-vogue signature guitar as their very salvage, and created a speed of capital and orders.
Johnny Ramone’s 1965 Mosrite Ventures II model fetched nearly $1 million at auction in 2021.
Alternate went up, trade went down. Mosrite’s distributor agreements and mum or dad firms came and went. As Moseley wrote to purchasers and inquirers in 1986: “Some day, in the discontinuance to future, the Semie Moseley and Mosrite Guitar tale would perchance be in task. It would perchance read cherish a fairytale—a drama—a cherish tale; from rags to riches—to rags—to the fight succor, from one important tragedy to another, from the very foundation thru its evolution to the 1980s.”
Nonetheless by then, despite the vagaries of the musical devices industry, Moseley turned into as soon as succor doing what he had repeatedly done most effective: building incredible custom-made guitars. And that’s the effect aside we take up the story for this month’s Traditional Vaultget.
Walnut pickup rings machined to take a look at the chook’s-ogle maple physique surround these split-coil humbuckers.
After Maphis’ loss of life in 1986, Moseley created this one-of-a-form beauty for a friend, Ross Coan Jr. While customary Joe Maphis units had orderly tops and single-coil pickups, this Maphis-vogue custom-made invent has a chook’s-ogle maple top and outlandish split-coil humbuckers. Nonetheless it actually retains the sure neck and beveled edges that Moseley will have to accept as true with realized first-hand from Rickenbacker’s Roger Rossmeisl, at the side of the angled neck pickup, metal nut, dual-knob, and 3-method pickup-selector swap of Moseley’s earlier units. And the headstock and fretboard inlays are sterling silver.
Prefer a gaze at those pickup rings, too, which—now not like pickup rings on nearly any other custom-made guitar—are remarkably magnificent and carved out of a wood that completely enhances the maple top. Clearly, Moseley put a gargantuan deal of care and consideration into this invent. He even stamped the name and date of start of his friend at the very final be troubled and inscribed the succor of the headstock: “Hand made for Ross Coan Jr. by Semie Moseley 1986.”
It’s no longer doable to place a label on what this guitar would’ve rate succor then. Whether it turned into as soon as a reward or a commission, it turned into as soon as a labor of cherish—a unhurried-career testomony to Moseley’s guitar-building prowess.
The succor of this outlandish guitar is fabricated from figured walnut.
George Gruhn writes that Moseley’s pre-Ventures custom-made guitars are extremely sought-after by collectors. Johnny Ramone’s 1965 Mosrite Ventures II model fetched nearly $1 million at auction in 2021. Nonetheless most production-technology Mosrites—those that had been no longerplayed by infamous musicians—time and again promote on Reverb in the differ of a lot of thousand greenbacks.
Moseley signed and dated the headstock of this guitar built for his friend Ross Coan Jr.
This custom-made invent from Moseley himself, who died ravishing a few years later, in 1992, is at reward listed for $12,500.
Sources consist of Reverb listings and pricing data, American Guitars: An Illustrated Historical past by Tom Wheeler, and Gruhn’s Manual to Traditional Guitars.