Often seen as the less popular choice in comparison to the two main forerunners of guitars that are the Gibson Les Paul and the Fender Stratocaster, the Fender Telecaster is still a strong seller regardless today.
It developed out of its original incarnation as the Fender Esquire. Leo Fender cleverly thought that more could be done to develop the design and tonal flexibility of that particular model. Initially being called the Broadcaster, the Telecaster name came along after threats of legal action from Gretsch due to their Broadkaster drum kit being already registered. Strangely enough, Fender now own Gretsch.
The Fender Telecaster indeed may have begun the rock revolution that still plays today.
Picture courtesy https://www.premierguitar.com/articles/premier-collector-6-custom-built-strats-and-fender-tube-amps-1
So after a period in which the instrument remained unnamed, the Fender Telecaster came about as a nod to the Television with its own name. The basic instrument remains unchanged today from its original incarnations, and has survived much competition.
The basis of the design of the Telecaster is a simple one. For the most part, the Fender Telecaster is a two pickup alder body and simple design, with one volume and one tone. The necks for the most part were maple with rosewood fingerboard, but later on maple fingerboards were introduced.
It is still a strong and high selling choice of Fender guitars today. Although many different types of Fender Telecaster models have seen the light of day, the history of the guitar has inspired many guitarists, particularly those playing country music or similar styles, such as rockabilly.
Fender are undeniably a leading brand of electric guitars, even to this day.
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When the Fender Telecaster was originally introduced as an electric guitar, the design was so forward thinking that it was broadly mocked by the general public but was quickly realised as a work of genius shortly afterwards when people began to play the Fender Telecaster.
In any case, for the guitar to be examined in its latest and greatest form, one must observe the Fender American Professional Telecaster specifications, courtesy of www.fender.com:
Surprisingly Fender Telecasters with Maple necks are a relatively new addition in its own history.
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Series: American Professional
Crimson Red Transparent
Body Finish: Gloss Polyurethane
Body Material: Ash
Body Shape: Telecaster®
Body Style: Single Cutaway Solid Body
Fingerboard Radius: 9.5” (241mm)
Fret Size: Narrow Tall
Neck Finish: Gloss Urethane Front, Satin Urethane Back
Neck Material: Maple
Neck Shape: Modern “Deep C”
Number of Frets: 22
Nut Material: Bone
Nut Width: 1.685” (42.8 mm)
Position Inlays: Black Dot
Truss Rod Nut: 1/8” American Series
Truss Rod Wrench: 1/8” Hex (Allen)
Bridge Pickup: V-Mod Single Coil Telecaster
Controls: Master Volume with
Neck Pickup: V-Mod Single Coil Telecaster
Bridge: 3-Saddle, Strings-Through-Body Tele with Compensated Brass Saddles, 6 screw mounting with removable modern “Ashtray” bridge cover.
Control Knobs: Knurled Flat Top
Hardware Finish: Nickel/Chrome
Neck Plate: 4-Bolt
Pickguard: 1-Ply Black
Tuning Machines: Fender Standard Cast/Sealed Staggered
Strings: Fender® USA 250L, NPS (.009-.042 Gauges)
From the basic evolution from the Esquire, to its modern incarnation, the Fender Telecaster has proven worthwhile as an instrument. Although a simple beast, a beast it is.
It has attracted a variety of players, such as Joe Strummer from the Clash and Syd Barrett from Pink Floyd, amongst many others. It is an important part of rock and roll history, along with the two main contenders of rock guitars – the Gibson Les Paul and the Fender Stratocaster. It is well known for its country and clean, twangy like tone.
Make sure that you at least own one Fender Telecaster if indeed you are a professional guitarist. This guitar is a true piece of history and deserves a place in your home.
Leo Fender: a true pioneer of the rock and roll guitar, who is sadly missed to this day.
Picture courtesy http://www.strat-talk.com/threads/happy-102nd-birthday-leo-fender.110520/