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  1. #1

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    I've been looking for a tele for a little while now, and I have a couple of questions.

    1) I would assume that you'd want one with a neck humbucker, but I've seen lots of people play jazz with a tele with a single coil neck. I love the Ed Bickert tone. Anyone want to make a recommendation of if that matters at all really? Obviously if single coil was an option, I'd have more stock to choose from.

    2) Why a tele and not a strat for jazz if both are single coil neck?


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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #2

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    Hi,

    I've played a tele for nearly 25 years, and jazz on it for nearly 20, so here's one dude's opinion...

    You can most definitely get a good jazz tone with a tele single coil neck pickup. Humbuckers do offer that one thing a single coil doesn't...quiet! Which can be nice. But tele neck pickups are pretty fat sounding...I've never wished it was a humbucker because of the tone, maybe only for the lack of buzz in certain environments...but I've also learned over the years how to position myself to the amp to mitigate that.

    Why not Strat? Yeah, why not? Nothing wrong with a Strat. I do think the tele neck pickup is fatter sounding than the strat pickup--generally speaking. But a strat does just fine too.

    I've included two videos here, one is me playing some straight ahead style stuff on my tele, which I think has more than a passable "Golden Age" jazz sound.

    The second video is from the Chicago cable access show that was my introduction to jazz back in High School. The guitarist, Brad Hubal, always played a strat, and sounds great.

    Should probably mention that Brad still plays in Chicago, super nice guy...and...he's switched to a tele




  4. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Hi,

    I've played a tele for nearly 25 years, and jazz on it for nearly 20, so here's one dude's opinion...

    You can most definitely get a good jazz tone with a tele single coil neck pickup. Humbuckers do offer that one thing a single coil doesn't...quiet! Which can be nice. But tele neck pickups are pretty fat sounding...I've never wished it was a humbucker because of the tone, maybe only for the lack of buzz in certain environments...but I've also learned over the years how to position myself to the amp to mitigate that.

    Why not Strat? Yeah, why not? Nothing wrong with a Strat. I do think the tele neck pickup is fatter sounding than the strat pickup--generally speaking. But a strat does just fine too.

    I've included two videos here, one is me playing some straight ahead style stuff on my tele, which I think has more than a passable "Golden Age" jazz sound.

    The second video is from the Chicago cable access show that was my introduction to jazz back in High School. The guitarist, Brad Hubal, always played a strat, and sounds great.

    Should probably mention that Brad still plays in Chicago, super nice guy...and...he's switched to a tele



    Yea, it's nice. I'd be looking to for a similar tone.

    What is your recording setup?

  5. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by jobabrinks
    Yea, it's nice. I'd be looking to for a similar tone.

    What is your recording setup?
    Android phone propped up against a beer can, Yamaha THR 10 directly behind it.

  6. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Android phone propped up against a beer can, Yamaha THR 10 directly behind it.
    What kind of beer can, man?

  7. #6

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    I always dig Chris Crocco's strat work:


  8. #7

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    I agree that the Tele neck pickup is a bit more rounder and fatter sounding that the Strat neck pickup (I installed a tele neck pickup on my Strat). Humbuckers have even fatter tones at the expense of a bit of the chime and clarity of the single coils but they also have more dynamics than single coils.

    The pickup decision is not that important when choosing a tele. It's generally easy and cheap to swap the neck pickup with an humbucker or visa versa. In fact, Ed Bickert got a humbucker installed on his tele later in his career.

  9. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by marcwhy
    What kind of beer can, man?
    I like fancy local beer, and PBR.

  10. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Hi,

    I've played a tele for nearly 25 years, and jazz on it for nearly 20, so here's one dude's opinion...

    You can most definitely get a good jazz tone with a tele single coil neck pickup. Humbuckers do offer that one thing a single coil doesn't...quiet! Which can be nice. But tele neck pickups are pretty fat sounding...I've never wished it was a humbucker because of the tone, maybe only for the lack of buzz in certain environments...but I've also learned over the years how to position myself to the amp to mitigate that.

    Why not Strat? Yeah, why not? Nothing wrong with a Strat. I do think the tele neck pickup is fatter sounding than the strat pickup--generally speaking. But a strat does just fine too.

    I've included two videos here, one is me playing some straight ahead style stuff on my tele, which I think has more than a passable "Golden Age" jazz sound.

    The second video is from the Chicago cable access show that was my introduction to jazz back in High School. The guitarist, Brad Hubal, always played a strat, and sounds great.

    Should probably mention that Brad still plays in Chicago, super nice guy...and...he's switched to a tele



    Guitar and playing both sound great.

  11. #10

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    I've heard great jazz on both Tele and Strat.

    I have a Lil59 HB in the neck position of my Strat copy and it sounds great.

    The middle position is the original single coil. It doesn't sound exactly like the original single coil neck pickup, but, it's close enough to cover a lot of the same situations.

    I think single coil neck pickups are terrific for comping. The question for me is whether the high notes sound too thin. But, not everybody plays much up there.

  12. #11

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    the Ted Greene / Tim Learch approach with a Tele..sounds great for solo guitar work...I think both tune down and use heavy gauge strings and Im sure
    adjust their amps also..

    I have heard hard rock players on strat types just adjust the tone on the guitar and amp and produce a sweet mellow "jazz flavor"

    alot of the tone is in the hands and attitude of the players

  13. #12

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    You can compare Ed's playing with either a humbucker or single coil with the same guitar, so that gives you a good idea of the difference.

    I really liked the Dimarzio Area T stacked humbucker neck pickup. Great jazz tone. I have the Wilde L280TN stacked humbucker now after damaging the Dimarzio, also excellent jazz tone. IMHO the best of both worlds.

  14. #13

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    Last couple days I’ve been playing jazz with the bridge pickup on my Tele, tone knob rolled off maybe halfway, through a tweed-era Fender amp clone and love how it sounds. It’s not exactly one of the stereotypical classic jazz sounds, but it’s not so far off the mark that it sounds stupid. Four to the bar comping at a low volume with this sound fits in nicely when playing along with old jazz records.

  15. #14

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    I use all solidbodies for my jazz guitars. I just prefer them, like the zingy sound and good feel. I don't like how grandiose it feels to play the hollowbodies. Anyways you can do basically whatever you want with them. On 1 I have flatwounds and humbuckers. Recently I have been putting single coils in series with each other plus a spin a split and a selector switch so I can choose either pickup plus how much I want the other pickup brought in in series. That way I get the option of chimey single coil or wooly humbucker or in between.

    Here's the flatwound ax.

    Telecaster for jazz-vintage-jazz-set-jpg

    And my most recent single coils in series ax.

    Telecaster for jazz-bright-jazz-strat-jpg

    I have a Tele body guitar that I still need to assemble. I'm thinking about what pickups to use. I will probably use a tele pickup and another lipstick pickup.

  16. #15

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    One way to avoid hum is to install stacked humbuckers. One of my guitars (1986 Charvel model 4, superstrat) has these in the middle and neck positions and produces a good full jazz sound on the neck pickup without hum. To be sure, it's not the same as the PAFs on my 1961 ES-175D, but it's still a good sound to my ears.. There are plenty of stacked humbuckers around (including SD) so if the idea appeals........

    Alternatively Lace Sensors are pretty noise-free and full sounding....

  17. #16

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    I've heard great jazz on both Tele and Strat.

    I have a Lil59 HB in the neck position of my Strat copy and it sounds great.

    The middle position is the original single coil. It doesn't sound exactly like the original single coil neck pickup, but, it's close enough to cover a lot of the same situations.

    I think single coil neck pickups are terrific for comping. The question for me is whether the high notes sound too thin. But, not everybody plays much up there.
    I had a Lil' 59 in the neck position of my '69 Custom Telecaster. Great tones. I only restored the stock pup b/c the Lil'59 really over-powered the neck pup, and I do a lot of both-pups stuff.

  18. #17

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    Nir Felder should be a household name regarding jazz on strat. What a player!



    and


  19. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by mr. beaumont
    Android phone propped up against a beer can, Yamaha THR 10 directly behind it.
    Which THR model do you have?

    I'm actually looking for a small desktop amp.

    Thanks.

  20. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by jobabrinks
    Which THR model do you have?

    I'm actually looking for a small desktop amp.

    Thanks.

    The most recent iteration of the 10.

    It takes a little tweaking, but its a great amp for practicing or phone recording. Not loud, but sounds "big."