Versatile Telecaster vs Stratocaster with a broader palette of tones

Stratocast

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After initially using Gibsons while playing in bands (Les Pauls, 335s) I discovered Stratocasters and never looked back until I completely switched styles. I took up acoustic fingerpicking but suffered severe tendon damage in my left hand. When I was able to play again I found a Telecaster better for that fat almost acoustic tone for fingerpicking and Jazz (check out Ted Greene). I think both Teles and Strats are great though Strats can be additionally enhanced by adding humbucker wiring so the N-M and M-B are in series and out of phase.
I love Ted Greene’s stuff. I first heard about him in the late 70’s. Good to know people are still into his chord teachings wish I could remember all the chords I’ve tried to play from his books Modern Chord Progressions and Chord Chemistry. If I had a better memory and more mobility I could have made a living using his teachings. He was phenomena
 

Stratocast

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After initially using Gibsons while playing in bands (Les Pauls, 335s) I discovered Stratocasters and never looked back until I completely switched styles. I took up acoustic fingerpicking but suffered severe tendon damage in my left hand. When I was able to play again I found a Telecaster better for that fat almost acoustic tone for fingerpicking and Jazz (check out Ted Greene). I think both Teles and Strats are great though Strats can be additionally enhanced by adding humbucker wiring so the N-M and M-B are in series and out of phase.
I love Ted Greene’s stuff. I first heard about him in the late 70’s. Good to know people are still into his chord teachings wish I could remember all the chords I’ve tried to play from his books Modern Chord Progressions and Chord Chemistry. If I had a better memory and more mobility I could have made a living using his teachings. He was phenomenal
 

57joonya

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Hmmm ... I think my post wasn't very clear, and easily misunderstood. Sorry about that.
Let me rewind and try to explain ...
I had (and have) a Tele (clone) and I was trying to persuade myself into buying a Strat (clone). So while "investigating" I googled stuff like:
telecaster vs stratocaster
And that phrase:
"Telecaster is much more versatile, whereas Stratocaster offers a broader palette of tones"
seemed to pop up in a lot of the hits I got.
And it just doesn't makes sense to me, trying to explain their differences. To me, it's like saying:
"Telecaster can do a lot of stuff, whereas Stratocaster can do a lot of stuff"
So that was my main point.
Does the phrase
"Telecaster is much more versatile, whereas Stratocaster offers a broader palette of tones"
makes sense to anyone? If not, isn't it weird that it's being regurgitated everywhere?
By the way, I bought a Strat clone, and now I'm twice as happy. (Smiley)
Your right , that phrase makes zero sense . There’s no doubt they’re both very versatile, and both do certain things very well. There’s no doubt the tele is the king of country music , but lately I’ve been enjoying twangy stuff on my les Paul jr.so I don’t know where that leaves me . I love all 3 of those guitars though
 

Stratocast

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A "broader palette of tones" is useless if your skills can't use all the colors. A well built "partscaster" will cover 80% of what most of us play. Ted Green and Tim Lerch never seemed to be limited by their Teles.
I always saw Greene playing top notch Gibsons. Some of the guitars he had are probably into the 5 figures at this time.
 

misterdontmove

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Nice looking tele. Is that sort of a camouflage finish ? It looks like it’s a military color

It's a lousy photo. It's tea stained/vinegar washed pine under flat varnish. It looks like an old barn. It's all full of knots and grain. I'll try and get a better photo.
 

Stratocast

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Why only “3 sounds” from a Tele? I can get MINIMUM 2-3 sounds from my Esquire with only 1 pickup,…USE YOUR TONE CONTROL and you get 2-3 sounds from each position on your pickup selector switch
I think the person was referring to instant tones. Yes with tweaking the tone knob. we can get about any sound we want.
 

Telecaster88

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Why only “3 sounds” from a Tele? I can get MINIMUM 2-3 sounds from my Esquire with only 1 pickup,…USE YOUR TONE CONTROL and you get 2-3 sounds from each position on your pickup selector switch
And then there's picking at different spots on the strings, from bridge to neck, too! I love picking/strumming right around the end of the fingerboard for a really thumpy but warm sound. I'll even strum around the fifteenth fret at times.
I'll give an opinion, based on having a Strat and a Tele. The Strat has many tones, but are unique to the Strat. Nothing else sounds like a Strat except maybe a 3 single coil knock off or different brand based on a Strat. The Tele is simple, but has a lot of genres it can cover with the simple 3 way switch and one volume, one tone. I find it easy to get a great sound with a Tele, no matter what.... but the Strat is a Strat and it has a distinct tone, versatile but unique to itself. If you've played a Strat you know... if you've played the simple Tele, you're amazed by this simple design and the ability to easily dial in a great tone. Both great guitars, but unique. A Strat isn't a Tele and a Tele isn't a Strat. Now are you more confused? LOL Believe me, they are different beasts, sonically and the physical feel of playing them is different. Each inspires me to play a little different.
My feelings exactly.
 

Stratocast

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Yes you're right. And a Fender representative is probably required to observe this. But you have "facts" on the one hand, and real life on the other. Many brand names or product names have gradually become a generic name, Kleenex is just one example among hundreds. By the way, if you ask someone for a Kleenex, that person won't tell you "Man you're out of line, it's not a Kleenex, it's brand X".
You read things like "my favorite strat is a Suhr..." all the time on forums. People talk like that. Anything shaped like a Telecaster is called a Telecaster. It would be super weird to name all the great tele players and say "no, Prince didn't play Telecasters", dont you think? Because we also use the word "Telecaster" as opposed to Lespaul or strat etc... Facts are one thing, but practice is stronger.
Hmmm I’ve always asked for a tissue.
I’ve never called a tissue “Kleenex” but I grew up taking a cloth handkerchief to school every day and “tissue” is easier to say than “handkerchief”
 

Stratocast

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Hi warendorph,
get yourself a good (hardtail or tremolo with all 5 springs installed) and add a switch that both the bridge and neck PU can be used together. Then you're close to a Telly sound on a Strat, too.
I did that and a lot more with a Kramer 620 (played wedding etc. for years and needed a versatile axe). There are three humbuckers (HSS routing) that can be switched in parallel or series, the neck PU can be switched out of phase (for the Brian May sound) the bridge PU can be added with a switch anytime and there's also a three way switch for no tone control, tone control with the position of the tone knob or a sweet switch like in older PRS guitars. This was my passive Variax long before LINE6 came around ;-)
Just out of curiosity you made this upgrade to a Kramer 620 ? But Not on a Fender product. ? Why. ? Was the Kramer 620 more expendable ? Or did you not own a strat or tele to tear up ?
 

2HBStrat

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For the Strat - love the body shape ergonomics. And there is something to be said about positions 2 and 4 which can sound beautiful … BUT … I can’t get that in between rhythm and bridge pickup sound on a typical Strat that really shines on a Tele - I like that sound more than the Strat 2 and 4 positions. Also, the middle Strat pickup has always bothered me because my pick is always hitting it. For me - the Tele works better. Actually planning to remove the tone control and go to two volumes on my Tele - I love blending pickups while keeping the toggle in the middle.
Did you ever try the Strat middle pickup alone?

I did not know that Nashville teles had a6 way switch.
I’ll have to check those out.
They don't. They come with a 5 way switch, but I think there is an aftermarket 6 way switch available.
 

Baron_63 Canada

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Hi TDPRI.

I'm sorry for my first post being slightly negative, but ...

... Is it just me? Or does this makes sense to anyone?
"Telecaster is much more versatile, whereas Stratocaster offers a broader palette of tones"
(If I google that phrase (with the quotes), Google says there are "About 2,220 results".)

But aren't those descriptions more or less almost synonymous? Doesn't "being more versatile" and "offering a broader palette of tones" mean almost exactly the same? Are there subtle differences I don't get here? Or is that line just being regurgitated all over the internet regarding Telecasters vs Stratocasters, with no particularly good reason at all?

I love both Telecasters and Stratocasters, so not trying to start a nasty argument here, I'm just curious about that phrase.

-- Erik Warendorph
Thank you, fellow musician, and TDPRI.

To the point, I have both in different configurations, with ample pedals and a variety of amplifiers.

Me, perfectionist, NO!
Simply, enjoy what you've got, and make the best of it :)

All the best.
 

Stratocast

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I just like a Tele better. I have b-benders on all my Teles and even though I had one on my Strat (duh) I turned it back into the tremolo available guitar it was meant to be! I'm so used to benders though that my Strat just feels "off".

As someone said a Tele can just get down right "nasty" too!!! A Strat, to me, is like a woman, hold her, coddle her, make her feel safe and enjoy the beauty... A Tele says, "I'm here to punch you in the face!".

They are my two favorite guitars but, if I could only have one guitar... give me that "nasty cutting board" any day!!!!!!
Wow I e always wanted a b-bender and you have more than one. Wow ! Lucky.
 

Stratocast

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Well I thought I did... Everybody calls any t-type guitar a Telecaster, don't you think? It's more convenient and straight to the point. But maybe I don't get your question...
Hmmm I would call a t-type by its name. Seems just as easy to call iit what it is and I don’t think that is an insult like some might.
 

Stratocast

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Well your analogy is wrong, all tissues are Kleenex = All guitars are Fenders? when we're talking about the model name, not the brand. (btw yes, all tissues are called Kleenex).
Ok we're on the verge of derailing this thread and getting into a long argument that will bore readers to death. People just say "telecaster". Do you wanna change that? I'll stop here
I just wanted to make a comment. I was in a band years ago and the other guitarist had an Ibanez strat copy. When we went to break. We both set our guitars on stands. If the other guitarist asked somebody that was not in the band to grab him the Stratocaster. They would bring him my guitar instead of his own.
 

abcsoundguy

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As a newbie, I find this extremely interesting. Can I ask you to elaborate? On almost everything you said? It reminds me of reading that Andy Summers switched from teles to strats, claiming they were better (I'm paraphrasing), which I thought was kind of a surprise. (Since the first 3/5 of Police's albums were made with his "iconic" Tele. Not a standard Tele, of course.)
I will of course make my personal guitar choices myself, but I find it very fascinating listening to people with years of experience, on anything I find interesting.
If you have the time ...
I tried to combine the 2 guitars mentioned, so a "Nashville" w/ trem, and a 6-way so I get neck + bridge ( aka center on a Tele ). It's "versatile AND gets a broad pallet of tones", but, I still prefer my regular Tele. And take a Strat for back-up. Hope this helps? Probably not.
image000000.jpg
 




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