On the heels of the mind-expanding "Parallel Universe" series, Fender unveiled the Mexican-made "Alternate Reality" series in 2019. The Alternate Reality series imagines what look like classic Fender models, except these are new creations that never existed. Borrowing from distinctly-Fender design elements, these guitars bring something entirely new to the table. Even though they may look familiar at first glance, they like nothing you've seen before.
From across the room, the Sixty-Six may look like a funky Stratocaster, but it's got a lot more going on. The body is actually a shrunken Jazz bass—complete with offset, asymmetrical design and appropriate comfort bevels. The Sixty-Six gets its name from the Jazz bass, too. The Jazz bass launched in 1960, and this new model has six strings, hence "Sixty-Six."
While the body shape and design look vaguely familiar, the intriguing pickup complement is unlike any other factory configuration. Three pickups and a five-way switch aren't anything new, but what happens when two of those pickups are Telecaster neck pickups? Well in that case, only a humbucker will do in the bridge, right? Borrowing from the Jazz bass again, the volume and tone controls are mounted to a chrome cover-plate. Instead of having two tone controls like a Strat, you get a simplified single tone control for all five positions. And the five-way switch is accessible, located in the same spot as a Jazzmaster switch.
From there, the Sixty-Six gives you a Stratocaster tremolo design and a Maple neck with a C-shape profile and 9.5" radius. The flared headstock looks like something from the late-'60s, but this Fender design is unlike anything else you've played. It opens a whole new world of Fender sounds!
This 2019 Fender Sixty-Six features a beautiful Daphne Blue finish. It is in excellent condition with no repairs or issues. The only cosmetic flaw worth mentioning is a tiny ding on the treble side (see photos), but otherwise it feels like a brand new guitar. It is set up with .010-gauge strings and fast, low action. It's amazing the breadth of tones you can access from the three pickups.
The Alternate Reality Sixty-Six is a cool relatively-rare Fender model, and it could also be an intriguing mod template. This one includes its original gig bag.