Ben Gibbard Signature Guitar

Ben Gibbard. Even if you’re not deeply entrenched in the indie music scene, chances are high you’ve come across that name. The melodic voice behind Death Cab for Cutie and one-half of The Postal Service, Gibbard has been an influential figure in shaping the indie-rock and electronic scenes for over two decades. His unique vocal tonality, coupled with his knack for writing profoundly emotional and introspective lyrics, has granted him a special spot in the hearts of many.

From belting out anthems like “I Will Follow You into the Dark” to crafting electro-pop wonders like “Such Great Heights,” Gibbard has showcased his wide-ranging musical abilities. But while his voice is often the center of attention, his proficiency with the guitar is a crucial element of his musical identity.

It’s not just about playing the chords; it’s about how Ben crafts an atmosphere with his strumming and picking, weaving it seamlessly with his lyrics. When a musician of Gibbard’s caliber consistently chooses a particular instrument, it’s a testament to its quality and adaptability. Enter the Fender Ben Gibbard Mustang, a guitar that carries with it the weight of Gibbard’s legacy and Fender’s renowned craftsmanship.

The Guitarist: Ben Gibbard

It’s hard to pinpoint where to start with Ben Gibbard’s illustrious career. From the early days of Death Cab for Cutie, Gibbard has been at the forefront of indie rock, delivering album after album of memorable songs that have resonated with generations. His soft yet poignant vocal delivery, combined with an uncanny ability to craft melodies, has made him a standout figure in the world of music.

Beyond his band projects, Gibbard’s songwriting often delves into themes of love, loss, and introspection. He has an almost poet-like approach to songwriting, with each lyric meticulously chosen to evoke a specific emotion or paint a vivid picture. His storytelling ability is complemented by his musical prowess. Gibbard isn’t just a singer; he’s a multi-instrumentalist, and his guitar playing, in particular, is a defining aspect of many of his songs.

Fender Ben Gibbard Mustang

The Fender Mustang, originally launched in the 1960s, has always been a bit of an underdog in the Fender lineup, especially when compared to the Telecaster and Stratocaster. However, its unique tone and playability have made it a favorite for many, including Ben Gibbard.

When Fender decided to collaborate with Gibbard on a signature model, it was clear that the Mustang would be the instrument of choice. But this isn’t just a standard Mustang; the Ben Gibbard Mustang is a modified version, tailored to suit Gibbard’s playing style and needs.

Design and Build

The Ben Gibbard Mustang sticks to the original’s sleek and compact design but introduces a chambered ash body. This not only makes the guitar lightweight but also contributes to a resonant and lively tone. The one-piece maple neck, with its modern “C” shape, ensures comfort for extended playing sessions.

Electronics and Features

The guitar houses custom pickups, designed specifically to capture the clear and bright tone synonymous with Ben’s sound. The simplified electronics, consisting of a single volume knob and a 3-way pickup selector, make it easy to dial in your desired tone without fuss.

One notable modification is the hardtail bridge, replacing the original dynamic vibrato tailpiece. This was a deliberate choice by Gibbard, as it offers better tuning stability and a more direct transfer of string vibration, resulting in enhanced sustain.

Fender Ben Gibbard Mustang Specification Table

Made in:Mexico
Left-Handed Version:No
Type:Solid Body
Body Material:Chambered Ash
Bridge:6-Saddle Vintage-Style Mustang Tremolo
Neck Joint:Bolt-On
Tuners:Vintage-Style with Fender Logo
Neck Material:Maple
Decoration:Black Dot
Scale Size:24″
Shape:Modern C
Thickness:1st Fret: 0.82” (20.8mm) – 12th Fret: 0.87” (22.1mm)
Frets:22 Medium Jumbo
Fretboard Radius:9.5″
Nut:Synthetic Bone
Nut Width:42mm (1.654”)
Switch:3 Way
Volume Controls:1
Tone Controls:0
Bridge Pickup:Fender Vintage-Style Single-Coil Mustang (Single Coil / Passive)
Neck Pickup:Fender Vintage-Style Single-Coil Mustang (Single Coil / Passive)


Ben Gibbard’s influence on modern music cannot be understated. He’s a testament to the fact that you don’t need overly complex instrumentation to make impactful music. Sometimes, all you need is a voice, a guitar, and a story to tell. Whether you’re a seasoned player, a Death Cab for Cutie fan, or someone who appreciates the fine art of guitar crafting, the Fender Ben Gibbard Mustang deserves a spot on your radar.