Fender Electric Guitars
The story of Fender guitars, their rivalry with Gibson guitars and the role Les Paul made is more than a history.
It helps you understand how guitars are built, the commercial profits motives behind guitar body types and constructions. And it helps you decide which guitars are worth the money and how your investment in a guitar could mean the quality of the sound you make and some of the common challenges you may face like the fret buzz.
Adolph Rickenbacker, Les Paul, and Leo Fender are three names who contributed to the manufacturing of solid-body guitars.
The solid body design is faster to make, and it lends itself to mass production. Unlike an acoustic guitar with a top, and bottom and sides that takes several steps to make regardless of how you assemble it, a solid body design is mostly carving and shaping of fewer parts to mold and assemble.
Leo Fender’s ability to effectively create a manufacturing assembly line, promote and capitalize on solid body design interested Gibson Guitars to take another look at Les Paul’s design. Gibson has rejected Les Paul’s design a few years earlier.
Fender Esquire was the first electric solid-body commercially profitable guitar sold, and Gibson wanted a piece of the action. Les Paul had a prototype, the “Log” that he made in Epiphone factory that became the seed to create Gibson Les Paul.
Had Rickenbacker been successful to create a commercially feasible metal solid-body guitar as he tried, hard rock would have had a different meaning.
Had Leo Fender failed, John 5, Chris Shiflett, Brad Paisley, James Burton and Jonny Greenwood would probably sing romantic ballads on a Cordoba?
Perish the thought!
Esquire was later added a two-pickup and became the Broadcaster and finally, it was dubbed the Fender Telecaster®.
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