Do you need Tele maple f/board to get "twang"?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by journo, Jul 31, 2006.


  1. journo

    journo Member

    Messages:
    5,668
    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2004
    Location:
    Sweden
    Hi,

    I would like to get a Telecaster type guitar as I'm getting into chicken picking a bit. I really like the sounds Brad Paisly and Vince Gill get out of their Telecasters. I also love a lot of rock sounds that people get out of their Teles as well.

    Now my problem is that I have a hard time playing maple fingerboards and thus pose the question to the tone gurus here at TGP. Is it neccessary to have a maple board to get "the twang" or can I get it with a rosewood finger board? Next problem is that most rosewood boards come on guitars with alder bodies while quite a few of the maple board Teles come with an ash body. So my real query is probably is if I can get "the twang" with an alder body and rosewood board.

    Please also suggest a few good Tele style guitars. There's absolutely no need for it to say Fender on the headstock or have the Fender Tele headstock either. I play the sound, not the looks.

    Cheers,

    Mats N
     
  2. ES350

    ES350 Member

    Messages:
    571
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2006
    A lot of it is in the hands---but lots of people use rosewood board Teles and get plenty of twang (Pete Anderson, Ray Flacke, etc etc). My twangliest guitar is not even a Tele---it's a 350T with P90's.
     
  3. Gas-man

    Gas-man Unrepentant Massaganist

    Messages:
    18,667
    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2006
    Location:
    Dude Ranch Above The Sea
    The answer is no.

    The biggest thing is to master hybrid or thumb-pick fingering. You will NEVER get the serious twang going playing with just a pick.

    Most of the snap you hear from Vince and Brad is their fingers plucking the string again' the fretboard.

    Personally, I don't know why ALL players don't use the hybrid technique regardless of genre. Why would you let your right hand just sit there when it can be doing so much more for you?
     
  4. dzrati

    dzrati Member

    Messages:
    63
    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2006
    Back in the late 80's I picked up a audio instructional tape from Albert Lee. I had always loved his style and wanted to know how he did it. It was my first experience with hybrid picking which I must admit was overwhelming at first. I listened to the tape and looked at the booklet to see how you actually play the licks and said to myself.....I'll never be able to do this! Well I did stick with it and now it is very difficult for me to only use a flat pick without using my fingers. As far as f/boards go I had always favored maple to rosewood even before I started the hybrid picking, but I can get just as much pluck and spank from a rosewood. Don't let that be a concern to you Journo.....just find a nice tele style guitar you like and let her rip!
     
  5. shallbe

    shallbe Deputy Plankspanker Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    10,180
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2002
    Location:
    Gulf Coast, AL
    An alder Tele with a rosewood board can get as much spank as you want. I've have the ash/maple and the alder/rosewood Tele types. I prefer the rosewood for feel and because Suhr makes such a killer T-style. If I were to buy yet another Tele--it would be a Suhr. Just outstanding guitars, and I recommend the 9-12" radius, medium SS frets, 60's vintage neck. Plus, John Suhr NAILS the old Fender colors and uses the superior Wilkinson compensated bridge.
     
  6. mrfjones

    mrfjones Member

    Messages:
    1,009
    Joined:
    Dec 21, 2004
    Location:
    the mid west
    mine has lots of twang and it has a rosewood board. I have also found that the higher output pickups hide some of the twang where a more vintage wind lets that sound come though better
     
  7. Dana Olsen

    Dana Olsen Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,614
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2002
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, Marin, Chico, CA
    Brent Mason, one of the twangiest 'mo 'fo's EVER plays a '68 parts Tele w/ a rosewood fretboard.

    Bill Kirchen plays pretty dang twangy - HE'S got a rosewood board.

    Twang is in your spirit, not your fretboard, IMHO. I have a maple neck Tele and a rosewood board Tele - both twang like crazy if you want 'em too.

    I agree with Steve Hall. When I visited John Suhr guitars earlier this year, John's basic Tele compared VERY FAVORABLY with my '56 Esquire, and played a lot better too.

    Dana O.
     
  8. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    35,834
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    Location:
    Northern VA
    No, you don't need it ... but you'll love yourself in the morning if you have it. :)

    [​IMG]
     
  9. Dana Olsen

    Dana Olsen Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,614
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2002
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, Marin, Chico, CA
    Pretty SWEET Tele Jon!

    Dana O.
     
  10. Jon Silberman

    Jon Silberman 10Q Jerry & Dickey Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    35,834
    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2002
    Location:
    Northern VA
    What I especially dig about it is how balanced it feels in every way. If you look closely at the grain, you can see that whoever put the guitar together ignored cosmetic/grain-matching considerations but when you play the guitar you know he or she nailed it on weight and tone. I played 13 '52 RIs before jumping on this one even though it came out of the box from Fender to WMC with a half-a-dime size ding right down to the wood. I wouldn't let Brian Meader send it back, I knew this one was The One.
     
  11. Gas-man

    Gas-man Unrepentant Massaganist

    Messages:
    18,667
    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2006
    Location:
    Dude Ranch Above The Sea
    Hate to be technical, but Brent's 68 is a maple fretboard.

    Kirchen usually plays maple too.

    I agree that it isn't necessary, but those guys twang maple.
     
  12. go7

    go7 Member

    Messages:
    2,503
    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2006
    Location:
    Vancouver Isl.
    Gas Man ;Right on The twang is in the fingers. G+L makes a rosewood board with swamp ash option if you`d like it. Plenty of twang there.I prefer a rosewood board but thought the twang was in the maple .Now all 5 of my Tele`s are rosewood boards,most ash some alder.Like Em all...Is there a bad Tele?...
     
  13. Dana Olsen

    Dana Olsen Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,614
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2002
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, Marin, Chico, CA
    Oops - I have Brent's instructional video and remembered his Tele as a rosewood board. Haven't watched it for a while ....

    Guess I remembered wrong. Sorry 'bout that ....

    Dana O.
     
  14. urizen

    urizen Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    9,831
    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2006
    Location:
    SoCal
  15. RvChevron

    RvChevron Member

    Messages:
    2,467
    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2002
    Location:
    Hong Kong, China
    Well, first of all, it really depends on the player.

    But, Swamp ash DOES have more pops and snaps and maple DOES response much faster (read:punchier NOT brighter) than RW which has looser bottom end, relatively speaking.
     
  16. Bryan T

    Bryan T Guitar Owner Silver Supporting Member

    Messages:
    16,425
    Joined:
    Aug 22, 2002
    Is this because of the finish that some maple necks have? If it is, track down a maple neck that doesn't have gloss finish all over it. Good candidates would be a G&L with the satin finished neck or a Fender without the glossy finish.

    Bryan
     
  17. Gradinger

    Gradinger Member

    Messages:
    96
    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2006
    Location:
    Memphis, TN
    One ingredient in the traditional Tele "bite" is that the frets are basically glued to the fingerboard with the finish on the neck. It doesn't matter a bit if that finish is gloss or satin in appearance.
     
  18. Dana Olsen

    Dana Olsen Gold Supporting Member

    Messages:
    7,614
    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2002
    Location:
    Santa Barbara, Marin, Chico, CA
    How Embarassing!

    Now I'm home, looking through albums and pics, and I found 1 pic of Bill Kirchen playing a rosewood fretboard Tele - the rest are all maple necks, as are all the pics I found of Brent Mason and that grey Tele he usually plays.

    DOH!

    Bad memory, really bad. I sit and stand way corrected.

    I still think the 'twang' is in your fingers though (GRIN)

    Dana O.
     
  19. teleking36

    teleking36 Supporting Member

    Messages:
    3,790
    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2005
    Location:
    Boston
    Twang is definitely in the fingers. Brad Paisley's "The Nervous Breakdown" was the song that turned me onto hybrid picking, and now that I've learned to use it well, I cant get away from it! I use it in almost every style of music I play now. I get this amazingly organic and percussive sound by picking with the flesh on top of my thumb, middle, and ring fingers. I can't come close to reproducing it with just a pick.

    I've got a USA Ash tele with a RW fingerboard and I can pull as much spank as I want out of it. I prefer the feel of RW over maple, but a nice ash body is the way to go for some good response, brightness, and SPANK. I can't stop saying spank!!!
     
  20. Chris Rice

    Chris Rice Member

    Messages:
    2,263
    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2005
    Location:
    Chicagoland
    Rosewood can both twang and snap. I have a (modded) '78 telecaster with rosewood that can twang with the best of them. Although the majority of that is in the way you attack the instrument, a good tele will easily do Jimmy Page through Brad Paisley though James Burton.

    I'd recommend a guitar-builder, but I'm fairly biased. ;)
     

Share This Page