Based on Fender’s distinctive double-cutaway TC-90 Thinline guitar, the JA-90 puts Adkins’ own personal spin on the classic model, resulting in a single-cutaway, semi-hollow ash-body instrument all its own. Features include a mahogany set neck with a 12”-radius rosewood fingerboard and 22 medium jumbo frets, Seymour Duncan® Custom SP90-3 and Vintage SP90-1 “soapbar” pickups with volume and tone controls for each and three-way switching, a three-ply black/white/black pickguard and an Adjusto-Matic™ bridge with stop tailpiece. It comes in Crimson Red and Ebony transparent finishes.
Adkins was very hands-on in designing and testing the guitar. Through several prototype stages, he personally studio- and road-tested the model extensively, collaborating with Fender designers and craftsmen every step of the way. In fact, he tracked most of Jimmy Eat World’s 2007 hit album Chase This Light with an early incarnation of the JA-90 (the album then promptly debuted in the top five on Billboard magazine’s albums chart).
“I always loved Telecaster guitars,” Adkins said. “And the TC-90 had some stuff on it I liked, but some stuff that I wanted to customize.” Several months later, the resulting JA-90 signature model was in his hands. “It’s the perfect guitar for what I play,” Adkins continued. “It’s pretty much the only guitar I play now.”
Jimmy Eat World came blasting out of Mesa, Ariz., in 1993, not far from Fender’s headquarters in neighboring Scottsdale. Fronted by Adkins and fueled by his knack for impeccable songcraft and solid guitar chops, the band blazed a trail of its own to multi-platinum indie-rock stardom with albums including Jimmy Eat World (1994), Static Prevails (1996), Clarity (1999), breakthrough success Bleed American (2001; also released as Jimmy Eat World), Futures (2004) and Chase This Light (2007).
“This model speaks right to the core of what Fender has always been about,” said Justin Norvell, Fender’s marketing director for electric guitars. “The Telecaster morphed into the Stratocaster guitar because Leo Fender sought the input of the players of the day, and working with Jim is today’s chapter in that same story. Jimmy Eat World is extremely accomplished and influential—a keystone modern rock band—and we’re extremely excited to collaborate with Jim in launching such a great-looking, great-sounding instrument.”