Underrated Telecasters from the depths of Fender history (Part 2)

Underrated Telecasters from the depths of Fender history (Part 2)

Fender Stratocaster and Telecaster guitars

A couple a weeks ago, we wrote blog-posts about the underrated guitars from the depths of Fender history. This is post number two which is also about the underrated guitars of Fender. All in all, we can conclude that these guitars are too good to be reproduced and at the same time you can rarely find on the market.

Guitar number three: Fender Bullet Telecaster

Keeping with theme of killer Teles from Fender’s Dark Ages is the Fender Bullet Series 1 Telecaster. While everyone seems to associate the Bullet with Squier because of the release of the Squier Bullet in the mid–’80s, the Bullet actually started out as a Fender budget instrument in 1981.

One of the coolest things about these guitars is that they were the first model designed by the now-mythic John Page (co-founder of Fender Custom). These guitars age with the best of them, and their design is a shockingly unique and cumulative take on a classic Fender shape.

Fender Bullet Telecaster

The design is a smaller Telecaster with Strat-style body. The reset of the guitar was informed by the history of Fender’s early starter models, like the Duo Sonic and Musicmaster. While it doesn’t sound like a traditional Telecaster with pickups on the thinner side, those of course can be switched out to whatever your ears prefer.

Overall, these are incredible guitars for what they are and they have rightfully gained their own cult-like reverence.

Guitar number four: Fender Elite Telecaster

The next guitar from the Fender era that stands out is the Telecaster Elite. Not to be confused with Fender’s new Elite Telecaster, the Telecaster Elite existed from 1983 to early 1985 and represented a forward thinking design, not just in terms of aesthetic but also in sound.

Fender Elite Telecaster

The Elites came in a variety of finishes as a standard series of black, white, natural, Sienna sunburst, brown sunburst… as well as a variety of custom options (Candy Apple Red, Lake Placid Blue, Candy Apple Green, Aztec Gold and Walnut).

The most favorites of these Telecasters is the series that were finished in rare “Starburst” where the color of the finish gradually gets lighter the farther up you get on the body. Today it’s hard to find a modern style Telecaster that looks sleeker and more like an art piece, as was this one.

In a way, the Elite was the “Tele of the Future” in the ‘80s, featuring a top–loaded bridge and all of the deluxe appointments of the time. The sounds buried in this Tele are completely unique to itself, with the guitar often being referred to as the “Les Paul Tele”.

Adding to that reputation, the model also featured a Gibson–style three–way switch. Featuring active circuitry with a built–in mid–range boost, this guitar is known as being a precursor to the Eric Clapton Signature Strat. Some people will never accept an active Tele with a top–loaded bridge, but for what it is, it’s a good guitar that doesn’t get enough credit.

Source: www.reverb.com

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