From 1951 the Fender Telecaster quickly became the guitar of its age, propelling the status of the solid-body electric guitar from novelty to the defining instrument of popular music. In 1968 and 1969, Fender produced a short run of the Telecaster (and Telecaster Bass) with a set of floral finishes. They were actually achieved by covering the guitar in wallpaper and applying a clear coat with pink sides and a sunburst-like fade.
These original pink paisley Telecasters are quite special. And this is the real deal, not a reissue. Only made in 1968 and 1969, they are now highly sought after by collectors and Tele enthusiasts alike.
There are lots of Japanese, Mexican and Special Run reissues out there, but very few actual vintage Pink Paisley Teles from the original run of 1968-69. Fender manufacturing records being what they were from this period, it is generally accepted these guitars were produced in the hundreds, not the thousands. This is the first and only one we’ve seen here at PREMIER GUITARS.
The body is solid alder with pink paisley wrap and clear poly finish. Maple neck with maple cap fretboard 1 5/8″ wide nut, black dot inlays, “3 DEC 68 B” neck stamp.
Pickups and hardware are all original, two single-coil pickups (cloth-covered wire throughout), volume and tone controls. Pot codes 3046617 = 1966. There has been a treble bleed capacitor installed at some point.
This is a fine looking guitar. It has some dings, dents and marks consistent with a 50 year old instrument. Many original Paisley Teles have serious lacquer splits and cracks all over each side, but this one has only a few cracks in its clear finish. We have tried to photograph them but it’s tricky.
The print is still quite a bright pink as opposed to many of these old girls whose paisleys turn a little brown. The pink is luminously bright on the sides.
The back of neck is super clean and in excellent condition. The fretboard has some wear through the lacquer but no pitting. There is some fret wear evident and it may require a refret at a subsequent owner’s discretion sometime in the future. But for now this one still plays mighty well, with a medium C neck profile and low action.
Weight is 7.9 lbs
At some point the clear pickguard has had its neck pickup hole widened somewhat – likely to accommodate a Strat pickup. But the original Tele neck pickup is now back in place. There is no extra pickup routing beneath the guard.
There are two shallow semi-circular routings at the base of the neck cavity, one with a small cable hole accessing the neck pickup area. We have shown this to some very experienced Fender collectors and separately and together, we have no idea what this could have been for. We have to assume this was done at some point after it left the Fender factory, and this has been taken into consideration in the pricing of this guitar.
The original bridge, tuners, nut, switch tip and control plate and “ashtray” bridge cover are present and accounted for.
But the payoff on this one is the sound. The neck pickup exudes typical Tele woodiness and clarity, while the bridge pickup is super bright with some serious top end punch. It is a joy to play.
Comes in its original black tolex Fender case in good condition.