The Fender Telecaster is the sine qua non of electrified American music — the workingman's axe, at once the simplest guitar to play and the hardest instrument to make one's own. To quote Bill Kirchen, one of country music's mightiest guitarists, the "hammer of the honky tonk gods [was] forged at the junction of form and function." In St. Louis the Tele hero to beat has long been Gary Hunt, the former co-leader of the Rockhouse Ramblers and current co-leader of Colonel Ford. Hunt is a great acoustic guitar picker, but when he straps on his cobbled-together Telecaster, the well-honed soul of his country and rockabilly licks can boggle even the advanced musical minds of the John Hortons of the world. Hunt doesn't just make that hammer ring; he makes it sing.
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