Jason Isbell knows a thing or two about guitar riffs, and so it’s maybe not a huge surprise to hear that he’s officially channelling his passion for the instrument into the launch of a Jason Isbell custom Telecaster courtesy of Fender.
It’s his first collaboration with the iconic guitar company; to recreate his signature chocolate-coloured Telecaster, he worked closely with them on the design, adding all of the same road-worn markings to it. If you’re feeling flush, it’s available to purchase now on Fender’s website here.
From @drivebytruckers and @the400Unit to his GRAMMY®-winning solo work, @JasonIsbell has emerged as a leading voice in the Americana movement. Watch Jason talk songwriting and his new Signature ‘59-style Tele Custom here: https://t.co/OQxF9wqLD4 pic.twitter.com/vr0ArupE6T
— Fender (@Fender) May 11, 2021
“I’ve played Fender since I was a little kid,” Isbell told Billboard. “I have a whole bunch of guitars and I’m very lucky to have all those guitars, so I could go for a particular tool any time I need to. I tried to think about that in this situation, if I had to have one guitar that would suit all of my needs, which one would do it? I think the Telecaster would do it.”
“I didn’t want to just make a guitar for people like me, because I’ve had a lot of success and I try to think about myself 10 or 15 years ago,” he adds. “What did I need then? If I could only travel with one guitar – if I were in a band and didn’t have a whole lot of space and couldn’t afford a bunch of guitars, what would suit my needs the best? Telecaster definitely does that. They stay in tune and if you drop one, it usually doesn’t damage it. You can still pick it up and finish the show. It rides well if you’re touring over long distances, it’s not going to be in bad shape when you get it out of the van. It sounds great and plays great. It just makes sense for somebody who wants just one guitar.”
“The Telecaster was the first, mass-produced, successful, solid body guitar,” he explains. “Miraculously, I think it has held up as really the most effective for all the different types of music. I could play modern R&B with a Telecaster and nothing would be lost. I could play pop records or I could make country music. I could make rock n’ roll. Buck Owens, Merle Haggard and Keith Richards all played Telecasters and their music was so very different.”
You can read more about the guitar over at Billboard here.
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