As a 13-year Fender veteran and son of longtime Fender R&D legend Dan Smith, Jason grew up on Fender—“It’s always been in my family,” he said, “And I was always extremely interested in everything my father did.”Born in Rochester, N.Y., and raised in California, Smith remembers meeting guitar deities from about age five on through his father’s work with Fender—Eric Clapton, Yngwie Malmsteen, Jeff Beck and Robben Ford, to name only a few. He went to his first big rock concert at age six—Rush—and Smith remembers going backstage with his dad and meeting Geddy Lee after the show. Before he was even in his teens, Smith was going to see Pink Floyd, ZZ Top and many other major artists.Rock music and Fender are simply part of his DNA. Smith joined the Fender Custom Shop in 1995, and in 2006 completed a 5-year apprenticeship under acclaimed Senior Master Builder John English. Among many diverse projects with English, Smith worked on a pair of double-neck StratocasterÂ® guitars for Stone Temple Pilots guitarist Dean DeLeo.Smith is an accomplished bass guitarist who brings a player’s sensibility to his work in the Custom Shop in addition to his expertise as a builder. With the Master Builder title that he’s strived for over so many years now his, he’s eager to start taking orders—after all, Fender is practically in his blood.“I’ve always loved it,” Smith said. “And it feels great that I’ve reached the goal that I’ve worked toward for five years in apprenticeship, and the eight years before that."