The Best Electric Guitars for Country Music: Evol Elec Guitar Guide

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Country music has been a beloved genre for generations, with its roots in American folk music and its sound evolving over the years. One constant in country music, however, has been the use of the electric guitar. In this article, we’ll explore the history of the electric guitar in country music and how it has shaped the genre into what it is today.

The Early Days of Country Music

Country music, also known as hillbilly music, originated in the Southern United States in the 1920s. It was characterized by its use of acoustic instruments, such as the banjo, fiddle, and acoustic guitar. The sound was raw and unpolished, reflecting the rural roots of the genre.

The Arrival of the Electric Guitar

The electric guitar made its debut in country music in the 1930s. It was initially used as a rhythm instrument, providing a steady beat and chord progression for the other instruments to follow. However, it wasn’t long before musicians began to explore the instrument’s potential for lead playing.

The Evolution of the Electric Guitar in Country Music

Over the years, the electric guitar has become an essential part of country music. It has evolved in both sound and design, with new technologies and techniques shaping its role in the genre.

The Pedal Steel Guitar

One of the most iconic instruments in country music is the pedal steel guitar. It was developed in the 1940s and quickly became a staple in country bands. The pedal steel guitar is unique in that it has a mechanical system that allows the player to change the pitch of the strings while playing. This creates a smooth, gliding sound that is instantly recognizable as country.

The Telecaster

The Telecaster, introduced in 1950, is another iconic instrument in country music. It was designed for country musicians, with its bright, twangy sound and solid body construction. The Telecaster has been used by countless country musicians, including Brad Paisley, Vince Gill, and Keith Urban.

The Stratocaster

The Stratocaster, introduced in 1954, is another popular electric guitar in country music. It has a warmer, more rounded sound than the Telecaster, making it well-suited for smooth, melodic playing. The Stratocaster has been used by country musicians such as Albert Lee, Mark Knopfler, and John 5.

The Solid-Body Electric Guitar

The solid-body electric guitar, such as the Les Paul and the SG, became popular in country music in the 1960s and 1970s. These guitars have a heavier, more aggressive sound, making them well-suited for rock-influenced country music.

Country Music’s Greatest Electric Guitar Players

Country music has been home to some of the greatest electric guitar players of all time. Here are a few of the most notable:

Chet Atkins

Chet Atkins was a pioneer in the use of the electric guitar in country music. He was known for his fingerstyle playing, which combined elements of country, jazz, and pop. Atkins was a prolific session musician, playing on records by artists such as Elvis Presley, the Everly Brothers, and Perry Como.

James Burton

James Burton is a legendary electric guitar player who has worked with some of the biggest names in music, including Elvis Presley, Ricky Nelson, and John Denver. Burton is known for his fast, fluid playing style and his use of effects such as reverb and tremolo.

Brad Paisley

Brad Paisley is a contemporary country musician who is known for his virtuosic electric guitar playing. He is a master of the Telecaster, using its bright, twangy sound to create intricate, melodic solos. Paisley is also known for his use of effects, such as delay and chorus, to create a full, lush sound.

Are you a fan of electric guitars in country music? Explore articles on unique electric guitar styles in country music, dream Les Paul guitars for country music, pros and cons of Koa acoustic guitars, capo hacks for country music, and advanced alternate picking techniques for country guitar to enhance your musical journey!


The electric guitar has played a vital role in the evolution of country music. From its early days as a rhythm instrument to its current status as a lead instrument, the electric guitar has helped shape the sound of country music. Today, the electric guitar remains an essential part of the genre, with new technologies and techniques continuing to push the boundaries of what is possible. Whether you’re a fan of traditional country or modern country-rock, the electric guitar is sure to be a part of the music you love.

About the author

Hi there! I’m Jack Little – an avid country music fan with tons of live country performances in the past. I used to play banjo in a country band with my best friend John Peters, who’s a true country harmonica master. Those were great years and I’m still mastering new banjo playing techniques, writing my own country songs and lyrics, and collecting banjos!

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