What Is The Telecaster Sound?

Discussion in 'Telecaster Discussion Forum' started by Digiplay, May 19, 2019.

  1. derekchristiansen

    derekchristiansen TDPRI Member

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    Sound is something that is naturally hard to describe in words as it is a whole other spectrum of our senses! A fender tube amp with an old fender Tele and the bridge pickup is the source of this “Tele sound” you are speaking of! There is no other guitar that will sound like a Tele in the bridge, strats don’t even come close but yet a Tele in middle position will emulate a les Paul /335 and in the neck will copy a strat all day long! My whitey fender is all I need! Well maybe a rosewood neck 60’s one day! Lol
     
  2. keithd55

    keithd55 NEW MEMBER!

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    I think the string thru body design kinda defines the Telecaster sound in a broad sense. I believe that is what gives it the twang, no matter the pu's or electronics.
     
  3. brick396

    brick396 TDPRI Member

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    7D0DEBD9-254F-4362-8060-4BB30BCCB7F3.jpeg Got to meet Bill at a show last year, won a Tele Squire which now sports a new neck and Lollar pups. The dude can play!
     
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  4. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    But if that were the case, a hardtail strat would sound exactly like a tele. But I don’t think it does. Despite Joe B saying it sounds like “almost like a hybrid tele-strat”, to me it sounds just like a fine strat should. You be the judge:

     
  5. Slide Man

    Slide Man TDPRI Member

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  6. billstyler

    billstyler TDPRI Member

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    Steve Cropper with Booker T. & the MGs, and all the backup for STAX recordings.
     
  7. flwolf

    flwolf TDPRI Member

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    In my opinion it's that clear, sharp sound, like the one Roy Buchanan has in "Lonesome Fugitive". Start at 1:40 minutes into the song. Almost always when I heard this type of sound, it was a Tele.


     
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  8. flwolf

    flwolf TDPRI Member

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    In my opinion it's that clear, sharp sound, like the one Roy Buchanan has in "Lonesome Fugitive". Start at 1:40 minutes into the song. Almost always when I heard this type of sound, it was a Tele.
     
  9. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    Belatedly. Yes RWs are fine teles. Even closer to the old Blackguards for not a lot more money. An American Vintage 52.
     
  10. Corvus

    Corvus TDPRI Member

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    The "Tele" sound? It can be many things - Yes, the twang of the bridge pickup is a wonderful thing - as is the sound of both but am I alone in also liking the fingerboard pickup; a lovely "hollow" sound or rolled back a nice one can do wonderful jazz. I like the Tele because it's all things.
     
  11. es125tcd

    es125tcd TDPRI Member

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    3 examples: Steve cropper, Booker t and the mg's tune green onions, muddy waters tele slide from the late 60s. And Albert Collins tune to many dirty dishes...also, rory Gallagher played most of his slide work on a 1960s tele, not his beloved strat... and another. More modern example, tab benoits' tune, one foot in the bayou(tele thin line here, with 'buckers... ) hope this will give you a fair idea!!!

    Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk
     
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  12. Stevie Redwolf

    Stevie Redwolf TDPRI Member

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    Telecasters don’t get lost in the mix! They stand tall. You can always get a Made in Mexico tele and put some Jason Lollar pickups on it and have an affordable killer axe
     
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  13. qblue

    qblue Tele-Afflicted

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    If you don't know it by now, you will never, never know.

    If you don't know the guitar continuously produced since 1948, longer than the 1958 ES-335 or 1954 Stratocaster, or any electric guitar, then we can't help you.

    Find it for yourself, this 'sound' that has seamlessly diffused into Americana music.
     
  14. fyshnutz2

    fyshnutz2 Tele-Meister

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    I have had this same question many times myself. A telecaster can be so many things. Today I came across this, and to me this is REALLY close to the sound I think of when I think Fender Telecaster.

     
    Last edited: May 25, 2019
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  15. RadioFM74

    RadioFM74 Tele-Afflicted

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    Ha! Second time the video pops up in the thread! I agree ;)
     
  16. telemnemonics

    telemnemonics Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Really, IMO there isn't a "Telecaster sound".

    I guess there are two kinds of player.
    One kind wants lots of different sounds, and switches guitars repeatedly to get them.
    For those players they would think in terms of the sounds they get most easily with a Tele as opposed to another guitar.

    The other kind of player just wants electric guitar sounds, and sticks to one guitar for long periods of time.
    These players likely think of the Tele as having an electric guitar sound.
    I'm pretty much this second kind of player, and I get my range of different sounds from a basic Esquire into different amps or pedals, and playing differently.

    But even the first kind of player who uses a Tele for one sound and a LP for another sound may not think Bill Kirchen when they reach for their Tele.

    The reason I use an Esquire is it has a clear but fat sound that can be manipulated into sounding many different ways.

    But give a life long skilled Tele player a LP and they won't likely sound like a Les Paul.

    All that said, I've been trying to get a Tele to have a high E that isn't brighter than the rest of the strings, and it is the angled bridge pickup that causes this.
    So I've put together a few Tele like guitars with the Tele or other SC bridge pickup relocated to eliminate the angle, or even with the angle slightly reversed.

    Still though, the angle is on Strats too, and players like Albert Lee get sounds we associate with a Tele from Strat pickups.

    Any cliche Tele sound is likely in the players head, or in historic recordings mistakenly attributed to the guitar, when they were really the player making the sound.
     
  17. Digiplay

    Digiplay TDPRI Member

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    Hello Doctor :)

    You sum up my thoughts in regards to "The Tele Sound" very eloquently (please note that I am the second kind of player as well)!

    In regards to other Members opposite opinions, I truly respect their feelings, and there's no way I would ever be self opinionated enough to say they are wrong, and I am right :)




    Which lead me to ask..............................................................................................




    As John Mayer no longer plays a Strat, does that mean he will no longer sound like John Mayer because he plays a PRS?
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2019
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  18. Nick Fanis

    Nick Fanis Friend of Leo's Ad Free Member

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    https://www.vintageguitar.com/18850/lucinda-williams/

    Check the gear of these guys.
     
  19. jondanger

    jondanger Poster Extraordinaire

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    Look at all those Music Man amps! Pedal steel is a JBL equipped blackface Twin, and the bass amp might be a Sunn or an Acoustic? Can’t tell. But Lee is definitely playing through either a HD130-410 or a 410-65.

    People sometimes bag on those amps for having a cold sound, but they were ubiquitous on big stages from 74-82ish.
     
  20. RyCo1983

    RyCo1983 Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    It's that bridge pickup with the metal bridge plate
     
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