I have a weakness for odd guitars I can’t play very well, and while I can’t really indulge it like I used to – purchases such as my much-missed 12-string Fender Strat were in the days of carefree credit card abuse, and I’m more responsible / have less available credit now – I’ll still find the odd irresistible thing on eBay.
My most recent daft purchase was a Fender Telecoustic, which looks very much like the one on the right.
The Telecoustic is a very odd guitar. It takes everything that’s great about a Fender Telecaster – the solid body electric guitar bit – and replaces it with a fibre glass-y electro-acoustic body. As a result it sounds quite tinny and it’s desperately nose-heavy. But it’s still a fun wee guitar, especially for songwriting: sometimes you want something that’s a little louder than an electric, but that isn’t as loud as a proper acoustic. It plays more like an electric than an acoustic too, so it’s nice and quick.
This one was horrible to play, though. The strings were far too heavy and old, the action so high up you had to stand on the fretboard to play a note. But thanks to a few online tutorials and some guitar discussion groups I’ve found better strings and lowered the action to make it playable. It’s still horrible, but it’s less horrible than before.
I suspect the Telecoustic is going to be rather like my much-loved million-mile Saab estate: absolutely terrible by any objective standard, and oddly lovable as a result.