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MusicRadar’s gallery of 28 Telecaster legends tips a hat to Leo Fender’s pioneering debut solidbody and the Tele-playing stars who helped to create and nurture the guitar’s iconic status. But what about the unsung heroes who’ve been bearing that Tele-shaped torch without the recognition they deserve?
Pixies frontman and prolific solo artist and producer Frank Black (sometimes known as Black Francis, only known to Wikipedia as Charles Michael Kittridge Thompson IV) is as much an alternative rock icon as he is a Telecaster-wielding legend. Even if he is a reluctant endorsee of the latter: “I ended up at a Tele and it’s probably appropriate but I don’t know if I gave it much thought,” Black told MusicRadar from a darkened tour bus in 2009.
In fact, he only chose a Tele in the first place because “I found a Telecaster for $400… a Japanese-made Fender Telecaster from the early 1980s that had [modified] humbuckers. I tend to play vintage guitars now - I have these piezo pickups that create a faux acoustic sound.”
Regardless, anyone capable of making some of the best albums of all time (and inspiring Kurt Cobain to write Smells Like Teen Spirit in the process) is more than welcome in this list. Even if we do have to drag him in kicking and screaming…
You can listen to MusicRadar's podcast with frank Black here.
"My suggestion would be Frank Black (Pixies)." (Thanks, jfarrar)
"What? No Frank Black? What? Am I missing something? (Thanks, loftandlost)
"There's also Frank Black. Reinvented alt-rock. How he's not in the original list is beyond me." (Thanks, loftandlost)
"Frank Black. His pixies and solo records have Telecasters all over them." (Thanks, jtc720)