Walnut / ash body, highly-figured maple top and bottom, and top and back binding, and super-shiny polyurethane lacquer finish, all exude a luxurious image that is nicely offset by a leopard-print pickguard very similar to the original (H.A. Anderson says the material’s supplier is no longer around and that the new version warps less). The Mad Cat reissue is a faithful rendition of the classic with a more up-market glow. The Japanese-built Mad Cat is more-or-less impeccably crafted throughout. The all-maple neck with 21 vintage medium frets, 9.4″ radius, bone nut, Gotoh SG360 tuners, Even though it’s a T-style guitar, the Mad Cat is outfitted with S1 and S3 model Bill Lawrence USA Strat pickups. Lawrence designed these for Stevie Ray Vaughan, and they replace the original’s Keiyo pickups. The Lawrence pickups are a nice choice that sound very warm, if not especially loud. The medium C profile has a familiar vintage feel that’s very comfortable. The differences with the previous model are: Nicer pick guard material. Better pickups (rounder fuller sound) Bindings are dark brown Neck radius is 9,5 (more accessible) Vintage Correct Re-issue of the original 1970.
Prince will probably always be most associated with his H.S. Anderson-designed Hohner T-style that he used on albums like Purple Rain, 1999, and Musicology. Prince’s Hohner is a Japanese version of the H.S. Anderson Mad Cat, which was released in 1973 by the Morris company. The über-rare originals (there were only a little more than 500 produced) fetch top dollar whenever they pop up. This reissue is the best version ever produced.
In addition to his sheer musical genius, Prince has always had an eye for style. And as any experienced axe-spotter knows, it didn’t stop with the Purple Dandy’s amazing suits. His David Rusan-built cloud guitar and Jerry Auerswald-built symbol guitars became some of Prince’s most identifiable style trademarks. But though those larger-than-life guitars were among the flashiest of his accoutrements, Prince will probably always be most associated with his comparatively pedestrian H.S. Anderson-designed Hohner T-style that he used on albums like Purple Rain, 1999, andMusicology.
The Hohner’s subdued style had a way of enhancing the mystery around it. It wasn’t a vintage Fender, and yet one of the most inventive and ripping guitarists of the day was doing major damage with the thing—there had to be more going on than meets the eye. Indeed, Prince’s Hohner was more than just another cheap Fender knock-off. In fact, Prince’s Hohner is a Japanese version of the H.S. Anderson Mad Cat, which was released in 1973 by the Morris company. The über-rare originals (there were only a little more than 500 produced) fetch top dollar whenever they pop up, but there have been quasi copycats under various brands over the years, too.
Over the years, Hohner released several versions of the guitar—Prince’s Japanese version and a Korean incarnation made by Cort. In 2009, Morris got back into the action and released a limited run of the Mad Cat to commemorate the company’s 45th anniversary. But more recently, the original manufacturers, Moridaira Japan released the definitive H.S. Anderson Vintage Reissue Mad Cat. The reissue is handmade in small batches of about seven instruments a month in Japan at the original factory.