When John Mayer released his album Battle Studies, he played a televised album release show at the Beacon Theatre in New York. On the track “Perfectly Lonely”, Mayer played a Telecaster that I had never seen before. I later found out that it was a Fender Custom Shop La Cabronita Especial. At the time, no regular production model of the guitar was available. Fender heard the requests for an affordable version of this guitar, and they have introduced a Mexican-made Cabronita Telecaster:
A guitar with a lot more attitude, the Cabronita Telecaster rocks a highly distinctive take on a classic design and spits out fiery, full-voiced Tele tone from two sharp new Fideli’Tron™ humbucking pickups. Other premium features include an alder body (ash on White Blonde model), comfortable modern C-shaped maple neck with a 9.5” radius and 21 medium jumbo frets, single-ply pickguard and single control knob (volume), and a string-through-body hardtail bridge with six cast saddles. Available in Three-color-Sunburst, Black and White Blonde.
The black one looks pretty nice to me:
I love the bare bones design, but no tone knob? It needs at least one tone knob!
John, I didn’t even notice that. I agree…a tone knob would be a necessity.
Ed Pauley says
I know several serious guitarists that don’t like tone knobs but I just don’t get it. Tone knobs add dimension and if used wisely, can produce a dynamic range of sounds from sharp cut-through to soft warm tones. A great guitarist can work a tone knob as well as he/she can play a riff.
While I certainly wouldn’t be considered a great guitarist, I tend to use my tone knob all the time, as well as my volume knob. I like to tweak either or both depending on what I’m playing.
Interesting minimalist idea. No tone knob is certainly an interesting exclusion. Perhaps you could go totally ‘knob-less’ and remove the volume too…but instead use a foot pedal. That might be pretty cool.
Dr D says
Bought one of these about a month ago and love it.
I may upgrade to real TV Jones pickups, but the stock ones are pretty amazing.
Regarding concerns over no tone controls, I am not sure that many players realize that the standard wiring on all vintage and many modern production Strats includes no tone circuit on the lead pickup; this allows a more direct and rich signal from the pickup.
Vintage Telecasters also do not have the tone circuit wired into the neck pickup, allowing for a very deep, rich tone.
Most of Eddie van Halen’s homebuilt and signature series production guitars had no tone circuit, only volume; in fact, he used to put a knob labeled “Tone” on the volume control….
While the tone circuit can add color, most players that multitask (lead, rhythm, sing) use the volume control more frequently to “clean up” or drive their signal… The volume knob on the Cabronita is excellent for this.
I use mine with a Matchless Lightning and the vintage handbuilt reissue Ibanez Tubesreamer and the tone and response is stellar. Slight adjustments to the volume knob in conjuction with the pickup selection yield fairly incredible rock, rootsy, alternative, and country sounds.
The pickups are very crisp and clear, provide signature Telecaster “Spank”, “Snark”, and “Snarl” without the 60 cycle hum.
For the money, this is one of the best guitars a player can have for alt-country, country, alt-rock, and roots playing.
Hope this helps….
Thanks for the review, Dr D. I still haven’t had a chance to play one of these yet, but I’m glad to hear that you like it.