The rise, fall and rebirth of Fender’s Rosewood Telecaster – the solidbody beloved by George Harrison

Fender's Rosewood Telecaster
(Image credit: Future)

Rosewood Telecasters have been in and out of regular Fender production several times since 1969. 

A reworking of Fender’s seminal solidbody electric guitar design by craftsmen Roger Rossmeisl and Philip Kubicki, the prototype guitar was custom-built for George Harrison in 1968 alongside an equivalent-style rosewood Stratocaster intended for Jimi Hendrix. While Hendrix sadly never received this Strat, Harrison famously used his Rosewood Tele for The Beatles’ historic rooftop concert on 30 January 1969.

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Rod Brakes

Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Guitar WorldGuitar Player and MusicRadar in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.