Muddy Waters - Red Telecaster

His mainstay from the late 1950s until his death in 1983. Distinguished by the amplifier control knobs with which he replaced his guitar’s original volume and tone controls, and the extra screws that he added to the thin plastic pickguard to prevent it from buckling, Muddy Waters’ Telecaster is one of the most distinctive guitars in the blues world.

Thought of more as a country or early rock and roll instrument, the basic, slab-bodied Tele isn’t associated with the blues as much today as instruments such as the Fender Stratocaster and Gibson Les Paul, but in the hands of Muddy Waters this simple, two-pickup, bolt-neck guitar with ash body finished in candy apple red with an added maple neck with rosewood fingerboard epitomized the raw, wiry, and emotive voice of this Muddy's music.

Late 1950s Fender Telecaster - Candy Apple Red


  1. Actually Muddy's red Tele was a 'partscaster': the '50s ash body and electronics of his former Tele were refinished in red and a '60s 'Custom Telecaster' neck with rosewood fretboardwas added. Other distinctive features included additional screws on the single-ply pickguard ('50s style) and blackface amp-style control knobs. Muddy switched to an all-brass bridge in later years.

  2. Thanks Jonathon and Muddy. Noted and updated to an ash body and added neck.