We are extremely proud to present the brand new Fender™ by AXE HEAVEN® Officially Licensed Merchandise Collection of miniature guitar collectibles. To celebrate our new partnership with Fender™, we’ll take a look a look at the history of their iconic models of electric guitars and basses that trace the history of modern popular music.
The rich history of Fender™ guitars begins with the Telecaster™, affectionately known as the Tele™.
This indispensable workhorse of an instrument has endured virtually unchanged for more than 60 years as a testament to elegant simplicity in form and function.
The Telecaster™ was developed in 1950 by Leo Fender. One of the longest-running production models in history, it has been modified only slightly since its early 1951 debut.
The Tele™ is known for its ability to produce both bright, rich, cutting tone or mellow, warm, bluesy tone, depending on the selected pickup. This feature is what made the guitar so important to the evolution of country, electric blues, funk, rock and roll and other forms of popular music.
Additionally, its solid body allowed the guitar to be played loudly as a lead instrument with less of the feedback hollowbodied instruments tended to produce at volume.
Even though the Telecaster™ has been around for more than 60 years, and more sophisticated designs have been coming out since the early 1950s (including Fender’s own Stratocaster™), the Tele™ has been in production continuously since its release.
Over the years, many guitarists have played the Telecaster™. In the early days, country session musicians were drawn to this instrument designed for the “working musician”. These included:
- Buck Owens
- Waylon Jennings
- James Burton
- Elvis Presley
- Merle Haggard
- Chet Atkins
The Telecaster™ also has a long and significant role in both Blues and Rock music. Some of the early proponents of the Tele™ included:
- Roy Buchanan
- Albert Collins
- Muddy Waters
- Mike Bloomfield
- Steve Cropper (original member of Booker T. and the M.G.’s, and session man extraordinaire for Sam and Dave, Otis Redding and countless other soul and blues acts.)
- George Harrison (used a custom-built rosewood Telecaster™ during the recording sessions for The Beatles’ Let It Be album)
- Eddie Vedder
- Keith Richards
- Andy Summers (The Police)
- Bruce Springsteen
- Albert Lee (whose extensive use of the Telecaster™ earned him the nickname of “Mr. Telecaster”)
- Joe Strummer (The Clash)
And the list goes on and on…
Take a look at this short but definitive documentary about the Telecaster™, Leo Fender’s iconic electric guitar, featuring interviews with Albert Lee, Steve Cropper, James Burton, Keith Richards, Jeff Beck, GE Smith, and other musicians who demonstrate its abilities and discuss their love and admiration for this classic masterpiece. (src: YouTube)