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Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: thomas guitar ()
Date: January 5, 2007 13:14

I think Keith use the pickup on the bridge for most of his songs in open g,
but on which songs he use the humbucker pickup (neckposition) or use both pickups

best regards
Thomas

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Haristone ()
Date: January 5, 2007 15:07

keith almost never use the neck pick-up with his telecasters.

that gibson type humbucker is here oly because it looks good.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Haristone ()
Date: January 5, 2007 15:10

he sometimes use both pick-up with his black custom telecaster, in this case the humbucker is a real fender pick-up, not a gibson or a seymour duncan. you can see that on 81/82 tours.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: gwen ()
Date: January 5, 2007 15:55

Keith said in an interview that he doesn't like the "kind of out of phase" sound he gets with both pick-ups on. This of course applies to the modified Teles, not the Telecaster Custom.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: January 5, 2007 16:11

gwen Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Keith said in an interview that he doesn't like
> the "kind of out of phase" sound he gets with both
> pick-ups on. This of course applies to the
> modified Teles, not the Telecaster Custom.

That's really strange, as the only reason you want to pupt a humbucker in the neck is because of the sounds it gives in the middle position. He used this position quite a lot in the 70's, on tracks like Tumbling dice and YCAGWY. He like it so much that he even started to play the Custom tele more and more, and about half the songs in '81 he played on the Custom with both pickups on.

I guess Keith meant that he didn't like the sound of the humbucker alone, as that would make much more sense: it sounds way too dark.

Mathijs

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: gwen ()
Date: January 5, 2007 16:53

Mathijs, I have asked this question here before but never got an answer. And I forgot to ask Dave Rouze when I met him. Are Keith Teles wired the usual way ? I read somewhere that early Telecasters were not wired the way they are wired now and that the tone button was used as a fader mixing the signal from both pickups when the switch was is what is now the "bridge" position.

As for Keith's answer - it may be a translation error as it was a (around Main Offender time) translation in french. I recall he said something like "I used mainly the bridge position, or the neck position when I really want to get dirty, but not so much the middle position".

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: January 5, 2007 19:03

IMHO keith uses mainly the humbucker position alone.

I just discussed the matter with my dear friend Marco, a fine guitar assembler & great expert of Keith's guitars who reassured me. Pics are be confusing: actually you see the pu selector always in the bridge position, but on keith's guitars the thing works the opposite way: back is the neck position.

Of course, open to discussion.


C

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: January 5, 2007 19:52

liddas Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> IMHO keith uses mainly the humbucker position
> alone.
>
> I just discussed the matter with my dear friend
> Marco, a fine guitar assembler & great expert of
> Keith's guitars who reassured me. Pics are be
> confusing: actually you see the pu selector always
> in the bridge position, but on keith's guitars the
> thing works the opposite way: back is the neck
> position.
>
> Of course, open to discussion.
>
>
> C


Please name one song where you can hear a humbucker alone.

Mathijs

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: January 5, 2007 20:32

Just any of the open g's!

I wouldn't bet my balls, but I am quite sure: this is what my ears say and close up pics of the selector seem to confirm.

Again: open for discussion.

1. after years of high volume I can't tell the difference between a trumpet and a fog horn

2. when i play a tele with the humb + single combination (I don't have one, yet) when you strum an open G in the hb alone setting, well, that's it!

C



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2007-01-05 20:32 by liddas.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: malcolm ()
Date: January 5, 2007 20:47

Hi guys,
as far as I know keith's using just the humbucker alone on most of open G tuned songs. the trick is just to invert the soldiering. on my malcolm clone, assembled with the help and suggestions of pierre (I'm not a luthier just an enthusiast ...) I've mounted a pre-CBS PAF at the neck and I've left a fender stock '52 reissue and I think it works and sounds very very close ... apart my poor guitarism skills.
ciao
marco

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: January 5, 2007 21:00

malcolm Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I've mounted a pre-CBS PAF at the neck and I've
> left a fender stock '52 reissue and I think it
> works and sounds very very close ...

GiĆ  sai ...

YOU BET IT SOUNDS CLOSE!!!!

Play it loooooooooooouuuuuuuuuuddddddddddddd

C

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: gwen ()
Date: January 5, 2007 22:03

Here is a description of the wiring I mentionned :

[www.themusicxchange.com]

For the first two years the twin-pickup guitars, regardless of name, did not have a tone control but had a "blend" control that allowed the neck pickup to be mixed with the bridge pickup when the selector switch was in the bridge position. In other regards, the controls were as shown in the following image for early Telecasters. In 1952 the tone control featured on the single-pickup guitar replaced the blend control.

This site states it only applied to Esquire/Nocaster/Broadcaster - I have read elsewhere some early '52 Telecaster featured this wiring.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: January 5, 2007 23:49

I don't think he uses a Hunmbucker alone.
It sounds way to dark.
I don't think I've seen a picture of Keith with Malcolm where the switch is not in the bridge position.
so, the blend option instead of tone control makes perfect sense to me.

it's the the mix of the humbucker and bridge pickup that make the distinctive Keith sound - but you all ready mentioned that.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: gwen ()
Date: January 6, 2007 00:09

The Blend wiring is detailed here :

[www.seymourduncan.com]

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: January 6, 2007 00:47

ah, thanx - if I find the right resistor I'll be soldering soon.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: malcolm ()
Date: January 6, 2007 10:53

Open G
you're dead right saying you always had seen keith playing malcolm with the switch in position 3 (bridge).
the 3 way switch mounted on 50's telly should work like this: position 1 (neck) / position 2 (both pu's) / position 3 (bridge).
if You invert the soldiering position 3 should work for neck pick up, just where the humbucker is on malcolm.
ciao
marco

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: gwen ()
Date: January 6, 2007 12:13

50's Telecaster wiring does not combine the two pick ups at all.

Once again from [www.themusicxchange.com] :

This version of the Telecaster controls, shown above, did not combine the two pickups. The switch selected the bridge pickup only, the neck pickup only, and the neck pickup with a .1 microfarad capacitor in parallel to ground. The .1 microfarad cap knocked off highs and some upper midrange, producing what Fender literature referred to as "deep rhythm" sound, allowing the guitar to make a muddy imitation of a thin-sounding bass (remember, this was before electric basses were in common use). The volume and tone controls were both 250 k ohm audio taper potentiometers and the tone circuit used a .5 microfarad cap as a high-pass filter to ground allowing a very dark, but still clear, sound.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: January 6, 2007 19:48

malcolm Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Open G
> you're dead right saying you always had seen keith
> playing malcolm with the switch in position 3
> (bridge).
> the 3 way switch mounted on 50's telly should work
> like this: position 1 (neck) / position 2 (both
> pu's) / position 3 (bridge).
> if You invert the soldiering position 3 should
> work for neck pick up, just where the humbucker is
> on malcolm.
> ciao
> marco

Yes, that's what I said - the switch in pictures always seen at bridge position (3)
but I also said, I doubt that he plays with only the humbucker - it's just too dark.
So I guess Gwen is right, position 3 is the blend position.
the (ex) tone pot works as a panorama control. 50% is both pickups working.

Gwen, I'm trying to figure out what value of a resistor I need.
It's a 15k resistor with a 250k ohm potentiometer - ok.
but I have a 500k pot, so I guess the value for the resistor must be different, no?
any thoughts on that?
thanx in advance

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: January 7, 2007 18:12

Simply put: Keith has never ever played with the humbucker alone. It's just way too dark and muddy. The only reason why people installed humbuckers on a Tele is because the middle position sounds great.

The reason why Fender asked Seth Lover to design a humbucker for Tele's in 1971 was because regular humbuckers sound too dark. Lover designed the Wide Range humbucker, which has less bass and way more highs than the Gibson PAF. the WR humbucker is usefull, but still is quite dark sounding. Keith has used this sound a couple of times: Shattered and Imagination from Hampton, the intro and rythm guitar of Had it With You, and several outtakes like the '78 version of Back in the USA.

Mathijs

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Spud ()
Date: January 8, 2007 10:06

Marketing drove it mostly I reckon. Humbuckers were perceived to sell guitars at the time... so Fender wanted humbucker equipped models in the Tele range.
They also launched the horrible and now enexplicably trendy Deluxe... with two of the sodding things !]
A P90 would have have been a good alternative choice if they wanted a beefier unit in the neck position...but wouldn't have looked so good to the marketing boys.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2007-01-08 15:47 by Spud.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: January 8, 2007 11:19

Still not 100% convinced.

I know I can't trust my ears. 1995 and 1997: yes, Keith's tele's sounded somehow sharper, and "tawngier" for what it means. Wouldn't be surprised if the hb was paired with a single. BUT 2006, JJF, THAT, to me, sounds absolutely like a hb alone.

Now, all the pics show that Keith had the selector in the bridge position, and we know that this means neck. So, if you hear a single, we need to conclude that his teles equipped with the blender as gwen noted

(by the way I have a blender on my strato and it works great

[www.kinman.com] ).

Overall, I LOVE the HB alone sound on a telecaster (provided it is a good hb and not those shitty pu fender puts on its mexican teles these days!), I love fenders sounding "dark". Never was a great fan of the twang ...

C

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: January 8, 2007 12:29

liddas Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Still not 100% convinced.
>
> I know I can't trust my ears. 1995 and 1997: yes,
> Keith's tele's sounded somehow sharper, and
> "tawngier" for what it means. Wouldn't be
> surprised if the hb was paired with a single. BUT
> 2006, JJF, THAT, to me, sounds absolutely like a
> hb alone.
>
> Now, all the pics show that Keith had the selector
> in the bridge position, and we know that this
> means neck. So, if you hear a single, we need to
> conclude that his teles equipped with the blender
> as gwen noted
>
> (by the way I have a blender on my strato and it
> works great
>
> [www.kinman.com]
> selections.pdf ).
>
> Overall, I LOVE the HB alone sound on a telecaster
> (provided it is a good hb and not those shitty pu
> fender puts on its mexican teles these days!), I
> love fenders sounding "dark". Never was a great
> fan of the twang ...
>
> C

Sorry my dear friend Liddas, but it is total crap what you're saying here.

First, all this talk about "blending pots"on Tele's: yes this was true for the very first two years of the Broadcaster. Fender wanted that the guitarist could play bass lines, so they installed a blender pot with a very dark and muddy sound. As soon as the tele was released, it wasn't the jazz players whom liked the Tele, but it were the mid-west cowboys who picked up on it, as the tele had all the treble they needed to pierce through a mix in a crowded jukejoint. By 1952, Fender recognized this and changed the circuitry so that you could select both pickups seperately. Still, the neck pickup sounded muddy, and most guitarists started clipping the 5 mfd capacitor between the switch and the volume pot from the circuit. Fender changed the circuit again in 1967, when they didn't install that 5 mfd cap anymore.

With all Tele's: the switch pointed towards the volume pot means BRIDGE position, not neck. It has been this way since the earliest 1949 Broadcaster and never has changed. This is the way it works on all of Keith's Tele's. The signature Keith sound -aggressive, biting, loud, rough- is THE typical sound of a very good Telecaster bridge pickup. Many people think that Tele bridge pickups sound weak and trebly, but then they never heard of played a good one. A good Tele pickup is as strong as a P90, and can be just as loud as any good PAF (which is a low output humbucker by itself). JJF in 2006: that's the sound of a very good, aggressive bridge pickup through a cranked Fender Twin. By the way, he used the black Custom Tele for JJF in 2006, and this guitar has always sounded more aggressive than his regular Tele's. Micabre has a hollow, phase-like quality to the sound (typical of light weight '50's Tele's), the black Custom sounds more aggresive with more mids, more like a good P90.

But really: in the 70's Keith only used the middle position on tracks like Tumbling Dice, YCAGWYW, sometimes Happy, and one time Wild Horses (Knebworth). If he wanted a darker sound he never switched to the humbucker, but he would play his Zemaitis, or played his black Custom Tele with the better Wide Range Humbucker. It simply is a known fact: neck pickups on tele's just don't sound that good. It is due to the fysics of the guitar. You can improve it by installing a low output humbucker, but still: you play a Tele for its bridge pickup, and sometimes the middle position, not for the neck position. If you want a great neck position sound, take a Strat.

Mathijs

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: January 8, 2007 12:54

Mathijs Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------

> Sorry my dear friend Liddas, but it is total crap
> what you're saying here.
>


LOL! Fair enough! I'm here to learn!

Marco: what the hell was Pierre raving about then?

C

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Spud ()
Date: January 8, 2007 15:53

Mathijs,
You mean you don't like the sweet liquid voice of a good standard Tele neck pickup either ? .
It's hardly a Rock N Roll voice...but it has a beautiful sound of its own for certain things. A little Jazzier than that wide open Strat neck voicing.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: January 8, 2007 16:03

Spud Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Mathijs,
> You mean you don't like the sweet liquid voice of
> a good standard Tele neck pickup either ? .
> It's hardly a Rock N Roll voice...but it has a
> beautiful sound of its own for certain things. A
> little Jazzier than that wide open Strat neck
> voicing.

I must admit I never fully liked it (I thought it was o.k., but not something special), but lately I am thinking about buying a Japanese '62 Custom with bigsby and install some really good Lollar or Fralin pickups. I guess any guitarist just must have at least one stock Tele!

Mathijs

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Spud ()
Date: January 8, 2007 16:08

LOL,
Yeah, quite agree. but not with original 50's wiring eh !
[One theory has it that the original idea was for the neck pickup to sort of stand in for a bass sound when required]

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Stones Blah ()
Date: January 9, 2007 03:02

I'm sure he uses the Tele neck position pick-up on TD and YCAGWYW towards the end of these songs when he starts noodling around and then changes back to the bridge pick-up for the end of the song. Listen on Miss you when playing his STRAT he does the opposite. Starts with the the neck pick-up and then switches to the bridge pick-up. Glasgow 06 around the 4:10 mark!

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: vedran ()
Date: January 10, 2007 01:34

> Many people think that Tele bridge pickups sound
> weak and trebly, but then they never heard of
> played a good one.

Wich would you recommend? I play MIM standard Tele trough Blues Junior.

Thx.

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: Mathijs ()
Date: January 10, 2007 15:31

vedran Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> > Many people think that Tele bridge pickups
> sound
> > weak and trebly, but then they never heard of
> > played a good one.
>
> Wich would you recommend? I play MIM standard Tele
> trough Blues Junior.
>
> Thx.


My all-time favourite's are the Seymour Duncan 1954 Antiquity's (with staggered polepieces), to me they're the best since original '50's pickups. Lindy Fralin has some really good pickups as well, and Lollar has a great slightly overwound version of a early 60's pickup. But to me, the SD's nail the tone I want. This pickup together with an original Fender Wide Range Humbucker is my all tame favourite tone.

Come to speak of it: I stated somewhere that keith used the neck humbucker on his Tele Custom for Shattered in the Stones best ever concert: Hampton '81. I was wrong: I tried it at home and there was a missing bite. I checked with the video, and Keith never plays the neck humbucker alone. He uses both pickups on Under My Thumb, Shattered, Black Limo, Imagination, Going to a Go Go, parts of Let Me Go, Beast of Burden, Miss You and Hang Fire.

And surely Hampton is the Stones finest two hours ever. Bill Wyman is sorely missed.

Mathijs

Re: Telecaster pickup question
Posted by: liddas ()
Date: January 10, 2007 16:20

Mathijs Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
>
> My all-time favourite's are the Seymour Duncan
> 1954 Antiquity's (with staggered polepieces), to
> me they're the best since original '50's pickups.
> Lindy Fralin has some really good pickups as well,
> and Lollar has a great slightly overwound version
> of a early 60's pickup. But to me, the SD's nail
> the tone I want. This pickup together with an
> original Fender Wide Range Humbucker is my all
> tame favourite tone.
>

I am not a Tele man, as you might have noticed in parallel threads, but a friend of mine has equipped his thinline with joe burden's pu, and they do sound wonderful! He has also a tele with the SD, but, of course, being two different guitars it was hard to compare.

Not easy to find, they say, and they cost a lot, too.

C

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