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History of Canora Brand?

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Text_Edifice, Nov 29, 2005.

  1. Text_Edifice


    Nov 28, 2005

    I picked up a 'Canora' P-Bass earlier this year - through body with maple core and some unidentified wood for the rest of the body - that I think was made 70s / early 80s. I really dig the bass and got it quite cheap but I haven't been able to find any information on the brand anywhere.

    Can anyone fill me in on where the thing might have been made (I'm guessing Japan) and what the story is with the Canora brand. I wouldn't normally be so interested but the total lack of information has me intrigued.


  2. do you live in australia?

    coz i have a canora guitar, a strat copy. was my first guitar.

    i pretty sure they are japanese, i too can't find any info on the brand, and have only heard of them in australia
  3. Text_Edifice


    Nov 28, 2005

    Australian born and bred! I've read references to a strat with an identical sounding body to my bass on a couple of guitar forums - maybe they're a local branding on a generic import?

    What's the strat sound like BTW?

  4. While it is nearly impossible to exactly pinpoint the manufacturer of this bass, it is clearly an early product of Matsumoku, Kawai and the Teisco guitar factories as it has recognizable parts from each of those plants. It is well known that Matsumoku kept very poor records on the export models they produced, but it is known all of the Univox, Aria, and Guyatone guitars came from them as well as some Ibanez, Electra, Yamaha and dozens of other brands had at least a foothold in production there. It was clearly an odd time unlike anything that happens at US factories, because you'd often see different combinations of factories necks, bodies, pickups, and hardware all on the same guitar. Imagine a Fender neck on a Mosrite body with Gibson pickups and you get the idea of where I am going with this. It seems very strange but I think it went to a different sensibility employed in designing this guitars. There were a lot of orders to fill and many more coming down the pike! It seems that for the lines made for the Japanese market this was less the case, but the US imports often became a free for all. What results is many models with confusing slight or drastic variations in design that has made it almost impossible to get a solid handle on it. The guitars like Kent, Decca, Kingston, Guyatone, Audition, Lyle, and Melody all seem to morph and change model to model and year to year in this way. It is clearly not very easy for me to say with certainty much else about the history of this model...
  5. cdef


    Jul 18, 2003
    Canora (named after a town in Saskatchewan) was a Canadian import brand owned by Great West Imports Ltd of Vancouver, as were Mann and Raven. The instruments were sourced from various manufacturers in Japan and (maybe) Korea.
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2014
    fretter likes this.
  6. kcole4001


    Oct 7, 2009
    Nova Scotia
    I recall that Geddy Lee said in an interview that a Canora was his first bass.
    That would have been in the late 1960s I'm sure.