Monday, September 8, 2014

The Telecaster

I used to be a Gibson guy. Fender guitars with single coils didn't work for me. Somehow I was able to conquer this affliction without intervention, medication or even support groups (ok, I do visit every so often, but that's it, I swear!).

Last week was Danny Gatton's birthday, and him being a Tele guy, I was thinking about this. I spent quite a bit of time driving to band rehearsals listening to him, always being struck by his seemingly super human abilities. I decided I had to have a Tele, so the shopping began.

Ok, I don't pretend to play even close to Danny's level (few do), however his playing and the playing of Roy Buchanan, The Hellecasters, James Burton, Albert Lee and Jim Campilongo inspired me to buy my first Telecaster. I've never looked back.

The guys I really like are the players who coax all the twangy goodness out of this first successfully mass-produced solid body electric guitar. The behind the nut bends, volume swells, tone control wah-wah effects, and the aggressively twangy sound of the bridge pickup makes a Tele, a Tele. 

Of course the list of favorite Tele players I've come to know is now a long one, all the a-list country players like Don Rich, Redd Volkaert, Brad Paisley, Brent Mason, and Vince Gill have influence my playing as well (I could go on with more names but I'll stop here!).

For me, the original 1950 design was good enough. Simple, straight forward, easy to repair, it became one of the most popular guitars of all time.