Following last year’s Acoustasonic Telecaster acoustic-electric guitar, Fender has announced the new Acoustasonic Stratocaster. Like you, we at Musician's Friend had plenty of questions about the new Acoustasonic Strat, so we reached out to Billy Martinez, Vice President Category Manager (Acoustics and Squier) for some answers.
The HUB: One year on from the Acoustasonic Telecaster, what’s your take on how it was received?
Billy Martinez: The response has been overwhelmingly positive. We not only launched the core line of Acoustasonics, but we saw tremendous success with our Limited-Edition Exotic Wood collection as well. We are extremely excited for this new platform to continue to grow.
The HUB: Did you always know that you’d be making a Strat model?
BM: The Strat was always meant to be the next body shape we would launch to ensure the success and longevity of the new and innovative Acoustasonic guitar. We knew the direction we wanted to go in, but we allowed some flexibility within the series for artist and consumer feedback. We are excited to offer another Acoustasonic body shape that will showcase just how versatile this guitar can be!
The HUB: How did learnings from the Acoustasonic Telecaster inform your development of the Acoustasonic Stratocaster?
BM: When we set out on this journey in 2016, the goal was always “simplicity!” We took a lot of time to study how artist and consumers were using it in live and studio settings. This helped us make the Acoustasonic Stratocaster unique and different from the Telecaster.
The HUB: So, how did those differences manifest themselves?
BM: As I mentioned, we took a lot of time to look at the many different ways that guitar players were using the Tele. We also knew that we wanted the Stratocaster to have more electric options, so we put those options, as well as a Dreadnought Acoustic option available by simply using the switch selector. We also used new tonewoods for a few of the acoustic positions to ensure the Stratocaster had its own unique voice and allow the mod knob to give a whole new set of voices and the players fingertips!
The HUB: Any surprises for how people have been using the Acoustasonic Tele so far?
BM: We learned a lot in this first year. We were often asked, “Who is this guitar for? What kind of player will this cater to?” The answer was simply, “all guitar players.”
What’s exciting is to hear and see all the ways guitar players have incorporated the Acoustasonic into their music style. At this point, nothing is unexpected because of the instrument’s versatility. When you have this many options within one guitar, the inspiration allows you to go in any creative direction you want!
The HUB: What will players experience when they get their hands on these? What might they be surprised by?
BM: I think the Strat will surprise players just simply due to the electric options, as well as how the switching changed for this guitar. When you play the Tele side by side with the Strat, you will hear and see a noticeable difference in the instruments. They are similar and different at the same time!
The HUB: Where do you see the future of Acoustic Electric “hybrid” instruments going?
BM: We believe this is just the beginning and we are excited for what the Acoustic Electric market will become in the near future!
The HUB: Thanks for your time, Billy!