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Strat easier than Tele to play

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by peterpicker, Sep 29, 2017.

  1. Dacious

    Dacious Poster Extraordinaire

    Mar 16, 2003
    Godzone
    Have 'em both. Love playing both for different reasons. The Strats great for loose and easy playing but the Tele is precise, sharp and rewarding to use. Both for feel and sound.
     

  2. raysachs

    raysachs Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

    Age:
    59
    May 21, 2017
    Near Philly
    I only have a strat right now, but I’ve played plenty of all three, as well as ES-335 and Firebirds and assorted other stuff and I find slightly curved maple fretboards easiest to play than flat and/or rosewood boards (no problem with ebony though) but other than that, never felt like anything else was easier or harder among them. Between teles and strats I never found either easier or harder if I liked the neck equally. But I seem to like the Clapton / CP50 Strat soft V more than any tele neck I’ve played (the 50s Baja comes close though), so a strat is all I currently own. And I can get more sounds that are more useful to me from the strat. The tele bridge pickup is uniquely great, but I don’t use the bridge on its own a lot on ANY guitar, and I like the combinations more on the strat. But when I’m playing a tele I can always find sounds I like (usually neck or middle position) and I don’t find them any tougher to play... At all. I’ll probably own one again someday, in addition to the strat. I mostly play seated these days, but I’ve played all of em plenty on my feet and each guitar hangs a little differently, but I’ts never bothered me enough to give it a moment’s thought.
     

  3. jimmytheshoe

    jimmytheshoe Tele-Meister Silver Supporter

    Age:
    51
    131
    Aug 1, 2017
    Chicago
    I'm at best a decent player now, I was loads better in my younger days.
    I have all three in a sense...an early 80s Gibson The Paul, a 90s AS Tele, and a partscaster Strat. All are "easy" to play, but I find that some songs just come easier on one over the others. Thank God most of us here don't have to settle for just one flavor ;)

    My wish list is down to a 12 string Rick, if only for a couple Byrds songs.
     

  4. musicalmartin

    musicalmartin Poster Extraordinaire

    Aug 8, 2007
    Norfolk UK
    The strat hangs differently with its longer top horn so the centre of the guitar is nearer the centre of the player .The tele sticks out more putting crudely .
     

  5. summer_69

    summer_69 Tele-Meister

    108
    Sep 22, 2008
    Denmark
    This is one important but very differently considered aspect of guitar ergonomics.
     
    Obsessed likes this.

  6. AxemanVR

    AxemanVR Tele-Afflicted

    Dec 27, 2011
    Minnesota USA
    '
    I recently had a guy argue that the Tele is more difficult to play (according to what he read on the internet) because "the bridge and pickup design transmits a lot more information so any mistakes and idosyncracies are also broadcast. More like a good acoustic, a tele makes you watch your Ps and Qs."

    He also sited that Strats seem to outsell Teles so that somehow proved that people were not happy playing Teles as much.

    I thought that was ridiculous...

    '
     

  7. TeleFunk Man

    TeleFunk Man Tele-Holic

    Teles are the meat and potatoes of guitar. Simple design, two knobs, not too fancy....but I also find you can't hide as much when playing a Tele. I'll hit the odd bad note or make some mistakes here and there especially if I'm not warmed up. Teles seem to be less forgiving.
     
    awasson, Obsessed and moose like this.

  8. tfarny

    tfarny Tele-Afflicted

    Sep 4, 2008
    Hudson Valley, NY
    Well, yeah, they are a bit different and they feel a bit different. Some people prefer one, some people another. Is this news?
     

  9. jackinjax

    jackinjax Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Sep 11, 2016
    Jacksonville
    If everyone was exactly the size this would be a revelation.
     

  10. Sparky2

    Sparky2 Tele-Afflicted

    Age:
    59
    Apr 15, 2017
    Harvest, Alabama
    To say that one guitar is more ergonomically-comfortable and intuitively-playable than another is a fair statement, peterpicker.

    And, as other posters have noted, it's a matter of personal opinion and personal perspective.

    I hasten to point out, on the other hand (no pun intended), that we don't always rest our non-fretting hand at precisely the same position all the time.

    In the course of any given performance, our picking hand may be found resting right on the bridge, muting the strings, picking cleanly somewhere in between pickups, or even strumming lightly a third of the way up the fretboard.

    To get the sounds and tones we need, from any given song, we move our hands, wrists, and fingertips all over the guitar.
    It's why we perform standing up with the guitar strapped on, so that our arms, hands, and fingers may move about freely and painlessly.

    It's also why we teach the novice players to never try to learn the guitar slumped back into the cushions of the couch.
    You trap your arms and elbows into one position in that endeavor, and therefore you have to contort your wrist tendons into awkward fixed positions while attempting to play different sections of any given song.


    Me personally?
    I love that there are subtle differences in the set-up and layout of my Strat versus my Tele.
    And between the Les Paul and the Ibanez.
    The Jay Turser and the Kramer.

    As players, we should strive to be like Gunny Highway's Marines;
    We adapt, we improvise, we overcome.

    It's part of the unique joy that comes from being free to play many different guitars.

    Sure, settling down with just one wife, and holding her and loving her (and her alone) forever can be a staid, comfortable, and admirable life choice.

    But there's something to be said for enjoying the company of lots of different women, of all shapes and sizes.

    Just sayin'........

    o_O:eek::p;):)
     
    jackinjax likes this.

  11. badfish_lewis

    badfish_lewis Tele-Meister

    387
    Jun 26, 2014
    Toronto
    Actually I find the tele one of the easiest guitars to play. Especially for chords, it just feels natural as compared to a strat.
    To each their own.
     
    AxemanVR likes this.

  12. littlebadboy

    littlebadboy Tele-Holic

    993
    Jun 25, 2016
    Midwest, USA
    All ththe guitars I had were comfortable to me. Otherwise, I wouldn't have bought it.

    It is subjective.
     
    brbadg likes this.

  13. Allen Peterson

    Allen Peterson Tele-Meister

    355
    Sep 15, 2016
    Katy, Texas
    I like both, equally. But the only time I play my strat is when I want that "out-of-phase" sound between the bridge and middle pickup.
     

  14. 8barlouie

    8barlouie Friend of Leo's Silver Supporter

    Age:
    59
    May 9, 2015
    Seekonk, MA
    I agree with you that his rationale for why Strats outsell Teles is ridiculous. But I also agree with him in his assessment that the Tele transmits any nuance to the signal path. Moreso than any other guitar I know of, a Tele will absolutely either rat you out for making a lackluster performance, or reward a well played passage in all its glory and splendor.

    When you're playing that Tele bridge pickup clean and out front, it's like standing buck naked for all the world to see you.
     
    Owenmoney, awasson and KellyCaster71 like this.

  15. KellyCaster71

    KellyCaster71 Tele-Holic

    514
    Mar 29, 2011
    Humble, Texas
    I owned an SRV Strat for about 15 years. I loved and still love the 2 and 4 pickup selector positions. But I found myself always accidentally rolling the volume pot and my picking style is more in the middle so I kept hitting the middle pickup. I also liked the belly cut but hated the way my palm would sharpen notes when resting on the floating trem so I blocked it. But the Tele instantly felt more comfortable to me and I'm more of a simple controls kinda guy. I think some might say that the Strat is easier to play because it doesn't cut through as much as a Tele. The Tele is more of a reflection of your sound, it can reward you or remind you that you need some more work. Often the latter for me, but it's made me a better player.
     

  16. Dismalhead

    Dismalhead Poster Extraordinaire

    Age:
    55
    Feb 16, 2014
    Auburn, California
    Got both, love both, but for different reasons.

    Tele - straightforward tones and feel, simple as can be, to me the most intuitive controls I've ever had on any guitar.

    Strat - I don't use the trem arms but I don't deck the bridge, so I get that extra leeway when bending which I like. To me though you have to search for the killer tones with the selector switch and knobs - the opposite of intuitive. But then you also get quack, which you don't get from a Tele.
     
    8barlouie likes this.

  17. Torz Johnson

    Torz Johnson Tele-Afflicted

    Jun 9, 2003
    NY
    I can switch between a Tele and a Strat or even a Les Paul without really needing to adjust much. The only time I really notice a difference is when I want to play a thumb-over chord and I'm holding a 12" radius neck. 7.25" or 9.5" rules for that.
     
    Owenmoney, awasson and raysachs like this.

  18. KelvinS1965

    KelvinS1965 Tele-Meister

    431
    Apr 9, 2014
    Wokingham England
    It's funny; I've found that I have to play a Fender with a 7.25" radius (my Strat and both Teles have the same 'vintage' type neck and with thin frets), I just don't feel comfortable playing on a 9.5" or higher on a Fender. However I'm fine when I pick up either of my Les Paul guitars too, despite them being 12" (I'd guess), though maybe the shorter scale length has something to do with it.

    I have two Teles (three if you count a cheap Affinity that is just a wall hanging decoration) and one Strat, but I enjoy the differences as they make me play in a slightly different way. Having owned the Strat for 35 years I maybe have more attachment to it than my very recently bought Teles, but I wouldn't want to be without any of them.
     
    Chicago Matt likes this.

  19. e44crowe

    e44crowe Tele-Meister

    369
    Jul 28, 2010
    Alabama
    If we’re strictly talking “easier to play” and not talking about differences in sound then I think the Strat is clearly easier to play. It was designed to be that. The ergonomics of a Strat make it easier to play. Now to play well... sound good... that’s individual.
     
    asnarski and 8barlouie like this.

  20. Linkslover

    Linkslover TDPRI Member

    99
    Mar 16, 2017
    Chicago
    I love the tone from teles, but i find that the cutaways on the strats make them more comfortable.

    I really like the rounded top edge for resting my right forearm.

    But, that's comfort, but playability.

    Both are great guitars and no one else makes a maple neck like fender.
     

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