The life of Leo Fender can be described as “musical.” Clarence Leonidas Fender was the American Inventor who created Fender Electric Instrument Manufacturing Company who’s now known as Fender Musical Instruments Corporation which later on branched out to create MusicMan and G&L Musical Products. The design he made for guitars, bass and amplifiers in the 1950’s are still amongst the top in terms of design, quality, and sound. Dominating throughout half the century. Most amplifier companies like Marshall use fender instruments for the basis of their products. This makes Fender together with Les Paul the most significant personalities in 20th century electric instruments development.
After World War 2, the big bands became out of fashion and died out. Musicians form small combos or bands playing boogie – woogie, rhythm and blues, western swing and honky – tonk in the United States. Most of these groups welcomed the use of electric guitar for the reason that it could emulate an entire horn section with few players. The dance bands in the late nineteen forties prefer arch tops equipped with pickups. Later on, roadhouses and dancehalls ushered the need for louder but less expensive instruments that are durable. The guitar players also require faster necks and better intonation to play the “take off lead guitar” which is known to country players. This need gave birth to custom made solid body guitars such as Les Paul’s “log” which is home made, and the Bigsby Travis guitar. This is where the idea began in the life of Leo Fender.
Meanwhile, in the life of Leo fender he realized that electric guitars are more efficient. They’re easy to hold, tune and much easier to play because of the way it is built. He also considered the fact that guitar players need guitars with less feedback tendencies at dancehall volume levels. Fender was searching for a specific tone that would stand out the noise inside a bar. 1949 marked the beginning of the development of the Broadcaster, which will later be known as the telecaster. Fender, in most people’s opinion based his design from the Rickenbacker Bakelite. But he never admitted it.
The first guitar they made was the Esquire. It has changeable necks and a single pick up. They later on developed a two pick up model called the Broadcaster. Due to infringement issues with Gretsch they eventually changed the name Broadcaster to Telecaster. This are from the early 51’s to mid 51’s guitars and eventually will be called no – casters by guitar collectors. Instead of making an improvement to the telecaster whom he initially intended when he received suggestions, he instead made a new model which features the improvement that was intended for the telecaster. This will be the Stratocaster which is the most popular guitar model in the whole world along with the Gibson les Paul. This went on until the day Leo died in the year 1991. He left us his legacy, he left us great sounding guitars, and he made a mark on the lives of all musicians throughout the world. This is the life of Leo Fender.