Many guitar players, especially Fender lovers are going to think this sounds ridiculous but Telecasters are underrated. In the opinion of many peoples, the Fender Telecaster is the finest electric guitar ever created. Stratocasters of course are great, but for them the Telecaster is nothing short of perfection.
Few guitars from the history of Fender are underrated, but they are still pretty. Unsurprisingly, some of the most interesting versions from a visual, tonal and player’s perspective have been swept under the rug in favor of the vintage-style classic.
So today, we’re going to shine the spotlight on two of those four underappreciated iterations, taking a look at what makes them worth reconsideration.
The International Series Telecasters
The International Series colors were available on Stratocasters, Telecasters and basses from 1980-1981 and were made from parts in Fender’s inventory dating as far back as 1978. These guitars were overwhelmingly with vibrant finishes with colors such as Maui Blue, Monaco Yellow and Capri Orange. It’s hard to think of a more striking Telecaster.
Not every player is a huge fan of late ‘70s and early ‘80s Fender pickups, but this guitar sounds as you’d expect a Tele to sound with a little more shine of ‘70s. This is a truly gem of the that era of Fender.
Given the way that these colors have aged, the International Series is becoming somewhat legendary and the Telecaster versions of these guitars themselves have shown to be exceedingly rare on the market. With all of this, it’s a major surprise and a shame at the same time, that Fender has never publicly reissued these colors.
Fender Tele Plus Deluxe
The most recent guitar on this lists comes from a time of rebuilding and renaissance for Fender USA. The specifically Telecaster Deluxe Plus deserves more recognition than it gets. These plus deluxe models were significant in that they featured Lace Sensor pickups (dual red LS in the bridge with a coil-tap, single blue LS in the neck) and a two-point start style tremolo system with a Roller nut and locking tuners.
With the amount of late 80s Fender appointments on this, you’d say that this should have been Jeff Beck’s favorite Tele. But then you’d be forgetting his ’54 Esquire. All in all, Fender USA couldn’t have done a better job on these guitars, and these Plus Deluxe series should be in line for a reissue.