Fender’s first solid-body electric guitar debuted in 1950 as the one-pickup Esquire. Fewer than 50 of the white-pickguard, black-finish ash guitars were made, and many of those were returned due to the lack of a truss rod in the instrument’s bolt-on maple neck (without a stabilizing rod, the neck tended to bend).

By the end of that same year, a two-pickup model of the same guitar design, with a butterscotch finish and a black pickguard, was rebranded as the Broadcaster. These guitars featured a truss rod in the neck, and between 300 and 500 of the instruments were produced before Gretsch pointed out that it had been making a drum called the Broadkaster since the 1920s. Not wanting to slow down production, Fender simply snipped the word Broadcaster from the headstock decal that also included the company’s logo and shipped the guitars with no name on them at all. Only about 60 of these Nocasters, as they are now known, were built, making them one of the most collectible vintage Fender guitars available.

In April of 1951, the guitar finally got a name that stuck—the Telecaster. Early finishes ranged from "Tele blond" in 1955 to two types of sunbursts in 1957 and 1958. Any color in the Dupont Duco line was available for most of the 1950s, and in 1968, the company made a hippie-themed guitar with pink paisleys and blue flowers.

Subsequent models within the Telecaster family included the 1968 Thinline, whose ash or mahogany body was hollow on the bass side of the guitar—the empty chamber was revealed by an f-hole. A top-of-the-line Telecaster Custom from 1972 featured humbucker pickups, which gave the instrument a warmer sound than the bright one that had typified the original.

One of the biggest compliments the instrument has been given is the wide range of musicians who have embraced it. Elvis Presley and Merle Haggard played Telecasters, as did Buck Owens and Waylon Jennings. Eric Clapton played a Telecaster during his days with the Yardbirds (though he famously switched to a Stratocaster during his Derek and the Dominoes years), and George Harrison played a Telecaster during the "Let It Be" sessions. Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones has been playing a Telecaster Custom almost since it was introduced in 1972, while Bruce Springsteen posed with his Telecaster on the cover of "Born To Run." Last but certainly not least is Jimmy Page, who played a his 1958, hand-painted, "Dragon Telecaster" on one of Led Zeppelin’s most enduring classics, "Stairway to Heaven."

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

Vintage Guitars Info

Vintage Guitars Info

This great reference site features detailed sections on vintage guitar makers, including Gibson, Fender, Martin, Gr… [read review or visit site]

Vintage Guitar and Bass

Vintage Guitar and Bass

Want to see all the old brochures and ads for your favorite vintage axe? Check out this great site, which showcases… [read review or visit site]

Clubs & Associations

Discussion Forums

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Bill Nash Custom 1963 Tc63 Relic Reissue Guitar With Telecaster Tele PickupsFender Highway 1 Texas Telecaster With Extras Rockabilly 50'sFender Squier Classic Vibe Telecaster Butterscotch Blonde Excellent Fits Fender Replacement Relic Neck Rosewood Telecaster Tele Neck Aged 61 62 632015 Fender Custom Shop Golden Relic 51 Telecaster Dirty White Blond No ReserveFender Standard Telecaster Electric GuitarFender Telecaster Sunburst 2000 No ReserveHomebuilt "telecaster" Style- 6 String- 22 Frets- 25 1/2" -electric Guitar As IsTele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Roasted Maple / PoculiFender Telecaster Old Growth Redwood Limited Edition Usa Electric Guitar Tele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Maple Birdseye Maple Tele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Roasted Quartersawn MapleJazzmaster+telecaster = Custom Telemaster GuitarTelecaster Loaded Body Used Fender Squier Project GuitarFender Japan Aerodyne Tele Telecaster With P90 And Tweed Gig Bag!!!2006 Fender American Standard Telecaster 6 String Electric Guitar Black Guitargai Fender Japan '74 Reissue Ash Telecaster Deluxe Japan-marketG&l Usa Asat Special Butterscotch Blonde Telecaster - Case Included - Excellent!Fender (telecaster) Esquire Scorpion Nos 2003 Model Box Never Opened 900 MadeFernandes Telecaster Mij No Reserve!Warmoth Thinline Telecaster Body - WhiteFender American Standard Telecaster + 60th Anniversary + Tri-color Sunburst + NrTele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Maple 1-11/16 Fat C07 Or 08 Fender Telecaster - Maple Fingerboard - Chrome Red - No Bag - MimFender Telecaster Electric Guitar Unplayed Mexico Black Heineken Rare NewWarmoth Telecaster Body In Alder - Relic Nitro LacquerFender Telecaster BodyFender Lite Ash Telecaster W/factory Installed Seymour Duncan PickupsFender Standard Telecaster Electric Guitar Made In MexicoExtreme Distressed Fender Custom Shop Designed Telecaster, Heavy Relic, BlondeFender Telecaster Body Seafoam Green - Project, RelicTele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Maple / BrazilianTele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Maple / RosewoodFender Usa Black Deluxe Plus Stratocaster Or Telecaster Hardshell CaseFender Usa G&g Tweed Stratocaster Or Telecaster Hardshell CaseFender 2015 Maple 72 Thinline Telecaster Classic NeckFender G.e. Smith Telecaster NeckTele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Maple 1-11/16 Chunky CFender American Deluxe Telecaster 2013 Butterscotch Blonde MintTelecaster Stratoteley TelewhoknowsFender® Classic Series Road Worn® '50s Telecaster®1998 Fender Telecaster Mim Mexico Loaded Body W/ Fender Noiseless Neck PickupVintage Hohner Guitar Telecaster W/ Hard Guitar CaseFender Telecaster Thermometer Case With Badge - Tweed With Poodle InterriorTele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Maple 1-11/16 Medium CFender Fsr Black Paisley TelecasterPeavey Telecaster Guitar! Tele Body Steve Cropper, Jerry Donahue, Hellcasters Fender 60th Anniversary Commemorative Telecaster (mim)Tele Telecaster Guitar Neck Musikraft Fender Licensed Maple / Rosewood V To C2013 Fender American Vintage 52 Telecaster **no Reserve**Nice Fender Telecaster Body Sunburst GuitarFender TelecasterVintage 62 Fender Telecaster Tele Body Ri Japan Rare ColorRoad Runner Tweed Stratocaster Or Telecaster Hardshell CaseWd Music Licensed Telecaster Tele NeckSquier Classic Vibe Telecaster '50s Electric GuitarFender Squier Telecaster Body,vintage Modified,white,duncan P90,clean,no ReserveFender Modern Player Telecaster (2013)Fender Telecaster Sunburst Electric Guitar Made In Mexico W/ G&g Vintage Case"wilde Bill" Keystone Telecaster Pickups & Fender Bridge

Recent News: Telecaster Guitars

Source: Google News

Glass Animals Want Beyoncé to Rap Over Their Next Track
New Times Broward-Palm Beach, December 1st

Still, some of the biggest "rock stars" these days are more apt to lay down a silky-smooth groove than shred on a Telecaster. While not yet in the same echelon as, say, the Weeknd, Oxford-based quartet Glass Animals, with their alternative take on R&B...Read more

Making Music
BangorMetro, November 30th

It's those early electric guitars – classic Fenders played by rockabilly and rock legends – that Mattos loves and specializes in. In particular, the Fender Esquire, which is the precursor to the Telecaster. Mattos' signature model is a custom guitar...Read more

My children helped me rediscover a lost love - the guitar
Press of Atlantic City, November 30th

Last year I purchased a Squire Telecaster, and I have a new-found love of playing guitar with my son and my oldest nephew. Other guitars have come and gone throughout the years, and there are still days I think back to my long gone Stratocaster. Maybe...Read more

Nick Maybury Replaces Deceased Jeremy Brown in Scott Weiland's Wildabouts ...
Glide Magazine, November 29th

At a recent gig in Baton Rouge, Maybury whipped his guitars into a furious frenzy: his 1962 SG Special on “White Lightning,” his Telecaster on “Big Bang Baby” and his early 1960's Airline on “Unglued.” Fans of Weiland perked up their ears and took notice...Read more

Keith Urban So Far… opens, runs through May
Lebanon Democrat, November 29th

Original handwritten song manuscripts and many of Urban's most cherished guitars are featured, including his 1989 Fender Custom Shop 40th anniversary Telecaster “Clarence,” which was his primary guitar for many years; an exact duplicate Urban had ...Read more

Did YOU buy this Fender Telecaster on eBay in 2010?
Hertfordshire Mercury, November 3rd

A music fan has launched a search for his treasured guitar, five years after financial pressure forced its sale. The guitar, a red Fender Telecaster, was a present to Aaron Foord from his wife on his 40th birthday. But hard financial times for his...Read more

Mod Garage: The Bill Lawrence 5-way Telecaster Circuit
Premier Guitar, August 14th

This month we'll look at a cool Telecaster wiring that also works with any two-pickup guitar with a master tone/master volume configuration. Designed by the great pickup maker Bill Lawrence, this wiring deals with the so-called half out-of-phase option...Read more

Mod Garage: Telecaster Series Wiring
Premier Guitar, April 17th

Fig. 1 — How to wire your Tele for an added series sound. Image courtesy of Fender Musical Instrument Corporation. Let's explore a common mod for Telecasters and other two-pickup guitars, but with a little twist: wiring two pickups in series rather...Read more