It was in 1982 that Fender launched the Squier brand name. They had bought the company originally in 1965 when it produced guitars and other instrument strings. But, Fender preferring to market their own brand name of guitar string let the company slide and eventually it failed.
When Fender decided to introduce a budget range of guitars the Squier name was chosen for these lower priced guitars that bore the Fender style.
Before 1982 Fender was already making cheaper guitars but on a limited basis but the comfortable exclusive world of the Fender guitar was about to change.
Before the CBS buy-out in the mid-60s, Fender was recognized as being the big player. Even today, Fenders in all the ranges that belong to the pre-1964 period are treasured and sought after guitars.
But the next twenty or so years saw fluctuations in the quality of the instrument and Fenders position in the marketplace.
It came to a head when what originally started in the late 70s, exploded in the 80s with various ‘copies’ of the Strat and the Telecaster coming from Japan. There seemed endless versions with the vast majority being terrible things and mostly unplayable.
They weren’t particularly good guitars, but they looked identical and were a fraction of the cost. And for some, that was reason enough to buy. Especially those that either did not have access to a ‘real’ Fender or who simply could not afford one.
Fender had to do something, and Squier arrived very soon after, based initially in Japan, as their answer to a cheaper version of their ‘real’ thing.
The brand name Squier though has established itself from those early days as being a guitar worth considering in its own right. At times it has been manufactured in a variety of Asian centers but is now established and producing quality guitars.
We are going to look at one of the guitars from these premium ranges, the Squier Affinity Telecaster.
The Classic Shape
The Telecaster is possibly the most recognizable guitar body shape in the world. Some might disagree, but it is a total icon and says ‘rock n roll’ rather loudly in your face.
A simple design, single cutaway, nothing has changed with this guitar since its introduction in the 50s. Why would you need to change it?
The Affinity range from Squier is a second run up the ladder of Fender Squier guitars. It is a level up from the basic version but below the ‘Vintage’ versions.
The Squier Affinity Telecaster is a good guitar and with a price tag that screams come and get me. More about pricing later.