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  1. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lobomov
    Yeah, but that LP is loaded with P90s, which basically makes it a tele
    A very very heavy Tele with a shorter scale...

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    The Jazz Guitar Chord Dictionary
     
  3. #27

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    Lately Lage has used a number of different guitars - solid, hollow and in between.

  4. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by wolflen
    my take..

    what is a "jazz" guitar?..but first..what is jazz?
    What is a "jazz guitar"?
    What is a "jazz"?
    What "is"?
    What?

  5. #29

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    Wait. What?

  6. #30

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    For those of you that think a les Paul is heavy, you should try my Tele with northern Ash

  7. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by Christian Miller
    A Les Paul is kind of a fat Tele anyway
    Tut tut, my good man. "Zaftig," surely! K

  8. #32

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    Mike Lull has a "TX Chubby" model which is like a cross between a Tele and a 335. The body is thicker but hollowed out (with a centre block).




  9. #33

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    I don't think that many jazz guitarists worry about it. I always thought a Tele was more of a country or blues guitar, too bright and twangy (I hate twang!), and the necks are too fat.

    I finally bought a cheap Tele copy to see what the fuss was about. It has a thin neck, narrow nut. Sounds OK on the neck pickup with the tone set just right. I've tried a bunch of bona fide Fender Tele's, they're better but still just ok.

    I like my Jazzmaster better- more ergonomic, easy to switch from rhythm/lead, nicer jazz tone from the pickups. I think they're underappreciated in the jazz world- which is what it was designed for!

  10. #34

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    Here is Dexter Gordon with Philip Catherine playing a Les Paul.


  11. #35

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    Great jazz has been played on the Les Paul (I think Larry Carleton is playing one on the Bubble Shuffle video).

    Stratocaster: Lorne Lofsky iirc and Toninho Horta.

    Jazzmaster [EDIT per Stringswinger's correction: JAGUAR]: (Joe Pass, briefly).

    SG: Zappa?

    L5S: Pat Martino

    And, of course, the Telecaster. Ted Greene's wedding video would have made it perfectly clear that the Tele works for jazz, even if nobody else ever used one.
    Last edited by rpjazzguitar; 10-15-2021 at 12:07 AM.

  12. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by rpjazzguitar
    Great jazz has been played on the Les Paul (I think Larry Carleton is playing one on the Bubble Shuffle video).

    Stratocaster: Lorne Lofsky iirc and Toninho Horta.

    Jazzmaster: (Joe Pass, briefly).

    SG: Zappa?

    L5S: Pat Martino

    And, of course, the Telecaster. Ted Greene's wedding video would have made it perfectly clear that the Tele works for jazz, even if nobody else ever used one.
    The Synanon Fender that Joe Pass played was a Jaguar, not a jazzmaster.

    Regarding the Les Paul, George Benson, Pat Martino and Jim Hall all played one for a time. And then there was Les Paul himself

    With modern chambered and weight relieved Les Pauls, one can get a guitar that is in the same weight class as a Tele or one can get a 24.75 scale neck for one's Tele to match the ease of the short scale (if you are so inclined).

    Les Pauls, Strats and Teles all have their fans. I would admit that the Tele has more fans in the jazz guitar world than the other two, but so what? Play what inspires your playing and don't worry if it will have the approval of your jazz guitar friends. After all, what do they know?

  13. #37

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    Some more of note:

    Stratocaster: Mordy Ferber (You'd never guess it was a strat if you didn't see it)

    Telecaster: Ed Bickert (maybe somebody already mentioned him. I'm sure he's well known around these parts...)

    Les Paul: Clint Strong (should be some YT videos of him...pretty sure some of you know him)

  14. #38

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  15. #39

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    I'm going to try a Tele, with a view to buying it, on Monday for my chordal melody stuff. Works for Ted Greene, Tim Lerch and many others.

    I'll know within the first few seconds if the guitar is for me

  16. #40

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    So play a Les Paul. If you play it well no one's going to complain. There was a period in my life when I played standards on a pointy Ibanez 7-string. No one ever said I should be playing a Tele.

  17. #41

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    Quote Originally Posted by Liarspoker
    I'm going to try a Tele, with a view to buying it, on Monday for my chordal melody stuff. Works for Ted Greene, Tim Lerch and many others.

    I'll know within the first few seconds if the guitar is for me
    From my experience pick up height makes a huge difference on a tele. I do not know how fender sets the height at the factory but I think that the might have it a bit bright. There is a trade off. When I dail in the hieght for a more Jazz tone, I lose some of the bell sounds from the mid way position on the pick up selector.

    The cool thing about telecasters, they can really do anything, and are incredible tough. I barely have any problems with my telecasters, but my les pauls are often needing attention. I do not know why, but my grounding comes off frequently (on different models). Maybe I need to be a bit more gentle.... IDK

    Also, to get a good archtop cost at the low end about 3000$. I am not cool enough to play a guitar at a gig that would cost over that amount. Maybe you guys are hipper then me, but too often things happen, and there is always a potential for someone stealing my stuff. 3000$ I could (with extreme pain), I could replace. Anything over that, and I would be looking at homelessness.

    I do understand that for 500$ (used and maybe even new) it is possible to find a very useable archtop. I like the guitar that I play, to be ones that I bond with. Typically that means, waiting till I find a used guitar in my price range. The lower end stuff seems to be missing something: good sounding electronics, needed fret work, maybe tone, and sometimes feel.

  18. #42

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    It's funny, I love telecasters and own an exceptional '50's vintage one. But I couldn't imagine using it for jazz.

    For one thing, whenever I play it I immediately lapse into telecaster style playing, mostly blues oriented (Im not much into country twang).

    Same goes for stratocasters.

    I jazz have better luck with a les Paul, but finally gave up and got a couple of arch tops. One is fat and chunky, and one is more airy like JS. They feel a lot better to me, and I play better too.

    One thing about telecasters, you can and almost have to set them up for jazz, and it is easy to do: flatter fingerboard, more appropriate pickups, heavier strings etc. You can build the whole thing with parts so it can be done cheaply. You can put in two hum buckers, and still call it a telecaster! But if you do that, it is less useful (to me anyway) for more traditional telecaster duties. So I just keep mine for that.

  19. #43

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    There is another aspect, which may seem a trifle, but given the (supposedly) utilitarian mindset of your traditional Tele player, perhaps it does play a role and may not be entirely unimportant after all. In daily practice, that is.

    Case in point: earlier this year I butchered an old no-name T-style which I had bought on ebay 15 years back for 150 bucks or so. Fret sprout, noisy electronics, to name just a few issues I wasn't prepared to deal with, so I had it shelved close to the ceiling for what must have been _at least_ three years.

    When I took it down, it was _in tune_. A few cents off, but uniformly so. Made me shake my head in disbelief.

    Can any of your Les Pauls do that? (And this guitar of mine was a cheap piece of C, but with all the construction features of a Tele.)

  20. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by palindrome
    There is another aspect, which may seem a trifle, but given the (supposedly) utilitarian mindset of your traditional Tele player, perhaps it does play a role and may not be entirely unimportant after all. In daily practice, that is.

    Case in point: earlier this year I butchered an old no-name T-style which I had bought on ebay 15 years back for 150 bucks or so. Fret sprout, noisy electronics, to name just a few issues I wasn't prepared to deal with, so I had it shelved close to the ceiling for what must have been _at least_ three years.

    When I took it down, it was _in tune_. A few cents off, but uniformly so. Made me shake my head in disbelief.

    Can any of your Les Pauls do that? (And this guitar of mine was a cheap piece of C, but with all the construction features of a Tele.)
    My Yamaha Pacifica 012 Strat copy, their lowest end instrument, stays perfectly in tune. I have the floating bridge tightened all the way and I took off the bar.

    My Comins GCS-1 needs to be tuned (a little) after every song. I think it's binding at the nut. Nut sauce didn't help. Eventually, I bring it in to a luthier and see if it can be improved.

  21. #45

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    My Les Paul and my Tele stay in tune, but I have flatwounds on each (12s on the LP, 11s on the Tele) and that helps. I love them both, but the LP (with P90s) gets a slightly better jazz sound and I bought it with that in mind. That said, I do love my Tele.

    I agree with Clint55 that the Tele seems to have become THE jazz solid (perhaps due to the combined influence of Bill Frisell, Ed Bickert, Ted Greene, Julian Lage and Tim Lerch); the size of the “Telecaster Love” thread rather illustrates the point.

    Thing is, the Les Paul is every bit as good for jazz. For that matter, so is the SG. But it’s relatively rare to hear either of those guitars played with clean tone whether dark or bright. Yes, Les Paul, Clint Strong, and Joe Morris are counter examples (and if you go back far enough, Jim Hall); but since at least Freddie King and, later, Eric Clapton and his successors, Gibson solid bodies have been associated with high volume and an overdriven tone.

    This is a great sound, but it obscures the glorious clean tones available with these guitars. Joe Morris gets some wonderful, bell-like clarity out of his LP Custom (check out the albums Antennae, Symbolic Gesture, or Underthru), for example. And the clip up thread with Phillip Catherine is excellent as well.
    But you really have to hunt to hear an LP played clean without effects. Ergonomics and price aside, this is the reason jazz players avoid the LP. There are few examples to inspire imitation.

    I also agree with Clint55 that we seem to be getting examples of the other extreme from that “no treble” jazz tone to much brighter, crispier tones. I put that down to the Frisell/Lage Tele influence being abroad in the land as much as anything else, especially since Julian has been quoted to the effect that he likes a trebly tone.

  22. #46

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    Some jazz on a Les Paul from Don Mock:

  23. #47

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    Teles feel great to play. Why complicate “playing”?

    It’s paradoxical, for some, to see someone playing a Tele and hearing a classic jazz sound. That’s novel, to me. I like that it’s surprising. You can make a grilled cheese sandwich with an iron. If you like how it tastes, mission accomplished.

  24. #48
    Yeah, I know it's a novelty that sounds cool. But why is it the standard? Lol. Lots of guitars can work. I use hardtail strats.

  25. #49

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    Is there any doubt that Bickert started the tele jazz thing? He was born in '32 in Manitoba. Almost old enough to be Ted Greene's dada.

    At 8 years old he was playing country gigs with his parents in Vernon BC. Pretty close to Calgary, home of one of the biggest cowpoke festivals in the world. You play what's available, and I imagine that some years later the tele kinda felt like home to him.

    Personally I've never been happy with the look, feel or sound of any fender when it was in my hands. I did play a Rick for a few years though. All's fair in love and music. I've jammed with a jazz bagpipe player for chrissakes!

  26. #50

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    From the beginning, with Jimmy Bryant, the Tele’s jazz pedigree was clear.

    I find it interesting that the guitars Leo Fender intended to surpass the Tele - the Strat and the Jazzmaster - only partially succeeded in that goal. For jazz, at least for non-fusion styles, I think the Tele has a fuller tone than the Strat, probably because of the trem and its springs.

    A hard tail Strat solves that issue but immediately raises the question: If you’re going Fender hard tail, why don’t you just get a Tele? Of course, that objection ignores the sounds the various pickup settings can give you on a Strat, but still the hard tail Strat sounds a lot like a Tele.

    The Jazzmaster intrigues me. Roy Lanham and Neil LaVang are the only two guys I have heard that didn’t go into rock sounds with it.