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Thread: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Lewguitar's Avatar
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    Default How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    According to Seymour:

    Q: Why did Roy Buchanan put a penny under the middle saddle of his 53' Telecaster Bridge. Kevin Loftus, Kensington, MD

    A: I grew up in Southern, New Jersey and I first saw Roy playing in a Club called Dick Lee's near Camden, New Jersey. Roy was born on September 23, 1939 in Ozark, Arkansas and grew up in Pixley, California. Pixley is North of Bakersfield, California and Roy listened to a guitarist that played with Merle Haggard named Roy Nichols. Later during the early 60's Roy played with a group called Bob Moore and the Temtations (The Temps). Roy was my biggest influence and I learned all that I could from him. He taught me about Volume Swells, Wah Wah with the Tone Control and most of all he taught me about "Tone and a Telecaster". He helped me find my first 56' Fender Telecaster and right away I knew my tone was different from his. He would let me play his 53' Telecaster as we often sat talking about guitars. We sat in a room in Dayton, Ohio in the early 70's just after his release of his first album titled "Roy Buchanan" and we talked about the "penny" under the bridge saddle. Roy's action was high and by raising the height screws on the middle bridge saddle made the sound thinner as the extended screws radiated the string vibration. By placing a penny under the middle saddle, the two height screws could be lowered giving the strings more thickness and sustain. For all you young blues players, you should try and find Roy's early albums to listen too. The recordings I like best are when Roy was recording for Polydor Records. He was playing his 53' Telecaster and playing what he liked to play.

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    Slam Dunk da Funk Funkfingers's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Roy was taught steel guitar before he moved on to regular "electric Spanish". He found ways to emulate many of the sounds of a steel guitar on the Fender Telecaster.

    For what it is worth, on the DVD Roy Buchanan Live At Rockpalast, RB plays a refinished CBS/Fender Tele with a rosewood fingerboard and a decovered neck/Rhythm pickup. I am not sure whether this guitar belonged to Roy or was hired for a tour but, even on the "wrong" Tele, Roy still sounds like Roy.

    Hence, the only surefire way to make a Telecaster sound like RB is to be RB.

    Another steel guitar to Telecaster convert worth checking out is Speedy West.

    Remember that recent thread about Jeff Beck in which his guitar tech explains how JB is doing four or five things at once with his right hand? Roy Buchanan and Speed West are the guys by whom the young JB was inspired.

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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    I'd love to have a Tele to try that but all I have is pesos to put under the saddles!

    This thread reminded me of this page I found on gbase a few months ago:
    http://www.gbase.com/gear/fender-roy...r-1952-natural

    Dunno if it's the same guitar they're talking about but there's no penny on the pictures

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Lewguitar's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Quote Originally Posted by PonyKiller View Post
    I'd love to have a Tele to try that but all I have is pesos to put under the saddles!

    This thread reminded me of this page I found on gbase a few months ago:
    http://www.gbase.com/gear/fender-roy...r-1952-natural

    Dunno if it's the same guitar they're talking about but there's no penny on the pictures
    I always thought it was a nickel Roy used but Seymour says it was a penny.

    The guitar in the Gear Page listing isn't Roy's famous '53 Tele, Nancy.

    They say when Roy was in the room with his old '53 you'd smell it before you'd hear it...Roy was a big fan of Lemon Pledge!

    He'd grease up the neck with it and probably the whole guitar...or so they say.

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    Fuzzy. Guitars the guy who invented fire's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Lots of folks tend to chase Roy's sound but if you don't have a Fender Vibrolux Reverb you ain't gonna get there...

    There are a lot of parts to Roy's sound but the 2 keys are a Telecaster and a Vibrolux Reverb amp...if you got those 2 things you have 90%+ of the sound...after that it all comes down to can you play like Roy!?
    Proudly Klon free!

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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Quote Originally Posted by Lewguitar View Post
    The guitar in the Gear Page listing isn't Roy's famous '53 Tele, Nancy.
    Oh, yea. Just noticed the guitar listed there is a '52 Tele.


    I'm just getting into Roy's music. Any recommended albums?

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    Fuzzy. Guitars the guy who invented fire's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Quote Originally Posted by PonyKiller View Post
    Oh, yea. Just noticed the guitar listed there is a '52 Tele.


    I'm just getting into Roy's music. Any recommended albums?
    Start with the first 2...if you look around you can find them both on one CD...

    Great starting point!

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/ROY-BUCHANAN...item589a5b84d5

    I also have a like "Loading Zone" but it's rather different from his early stuff...
    Proudly Klon free!

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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    That seems legit. I'm very close to picking up a tele after I've been gasing for one for two years. One thing I've found that sets most of todays teles apart are the brass saddles. They just sound right to me. One of the best I've played was an American special with texas special pups and brass saddles. It sounded and resonated so much better than the US standards with the six strat style saddles. Who needs intonation? I can see that raising the saddle would loose a bit of contact from the string to the bridge, it seems fit that the penny under the saddle would fix that.

    Roy is totally the reason I want a tele so bad. His one tune Cajun basically drove me insane. I could never find a tab for it so one day I hunkered down on the couch and went to work for HOURS trying to nail this song that's not even two minutes long. Now, whenever I pickup a tele it's the first song I play. I got a copy of his album Loading Zone on vinyl for like 5 bucks, listening to this thread made me wanna listen to it. Sounds great. This record actually resides over the entrance to my bedroom.
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Quote Originally Posted by the guy who invented fire View Post
    Start with the first 2...if you look around you can find them both on one CD...

    Great starting point!

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/ROY-BUCHANAN...item589a5b84d5

    I also have a like "Loading Zone" but it's rather different from his early stuff...
    Thanks!! I'll look for that double record CD next time I go to the record store.

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    Ultimate Tone Slacker Lake Placid Blues's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Quote Originally Posted by the guy who invented fire View Post
    Lots of folks tend to chase Roy's sound but if you don't have a Fender Vibrolux Reverb you ain't gonna get there...

    There are a lot of parts to Roy's sound but the 2 keys are a Telecaster and a Vibrolux Reverb amp...if you got those 2 things you have 90%+ of the sound...after that it all comes down to can you play like Roy!?
    And he also played them very loud. He was old school. You won't get there at today's keep the club owner and sound guy happy volume levels. I used to hear him in Northern Virginia in a small resturant/pub just off Route 50. He would often walk home after jamming in the wee hours, so he wasn't driving buzzed. The last time he was walking home he got picked up by the cops. Lets just say I don't believe the official findings.

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    Toneologist Inkstained's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    Great info.

    Brass saddles, microphonic pickups and monster talent all help.


    Quote Originally Posted by nedcronin View Post
    Pretty much what you suggested Ink.
    Quote Originally Posted by metalmachine View Post
    dont worry about it bro. even if we dont like it...... were just internet ppl. not real ppl. more like a hulicination of a mythical forest creature.

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    Mojo's Minions ItsaBass's Avatar
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    Default Re: How to make your Tele sound like Roy Buchanan's......

    90% of sounding like anyone in particular is playing like that person. Yet we all obsess over that 10% that is made up by the gear used. If anyone could actually play like him, I truly believe that they could get their tone to sound almost exactly like his with any reasonably versatile guitar and amp.
    Quote Originally Posted by LesStrat View Post
    Yogi Berra was correct.
    Quote Originally Posted by JOLLY View Post
    I do a few chord things, some crappy lead stuff, and then some rhythm stuff.

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