The 4 Best Electric Guitars for Singer Songwriters – Reviews 2023

best electric guitar for singer songwriter

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The singer/songwriter with an electric guitar—not exactly the stereotypical image, which usually has the person holding an acoustic instrument. However, there are a lot of good reasons to go electric instead. The various effects and settings on your amp give you a lot more tonal options to play with. Even if you choose not to use distortion, the extra output from a clean tone can help balance a mic’ed voice.

If you’re looking for the right electric guitar for a singer/songwriter, we’ve rounded up four of our favorites on the list below. Whatever your style or genre, you’re sure to find something here that will suit your needs.

These are our recommendations for the 4 best electric guitars for singer/songwriters on the market:

Electric Guitar for Singer/Songwriter 1: Epiphone Century Hollow-Body

Hollow-body guitars are a great choice if you’re looking for an electric that still has an acoustic sound and feel. This Epiphone Hollow-Body is especially great for strummers, pairing a rounded C neck with the hollow-body construction.

The pickup on this Epiphone guitar is inspired by the classic 1960s Century model. It’s a P-90 style single-coil, in many ways the perfect pickup for a singer/songwriter. It gives you the bright output of a single-coil but with a warmth that’s more compatible with a human voice.

This guitar is also a great choice for a singer/songwriter because it’s relatively lightweight. At under ten pounds, it’s easy to play while you’re standing. The hollow-body construction helps here, as well, and gives the instrument a balance that will feel more familiar if you usually play acoustic.

Epiphone Century 1966 - one great guitar...

Electric Guitar for Singer/Songwriter 2: Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin

Another great option if you’re looking for a hollow-body guitar is the Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin. Like the Epiphone above, it uses a P-90 pickup. It also features a vintage-inspired archtop construction, a throwback to the hollow-body guitars popular in the 1950s.

The pups on this guitar strike a nice balance between power and precision. They’re especially impressive in the low- and mid-range, making it a great accompanying instrument for a singer. Since it’s a hollow-body, you’ll get a lot of tonal depth from the tonewoods, as well. It uses wild cherry for the top, back, and sides, a unique choice among modern guitars that’s a bit softer than spruce without losing that sharp articulation.

Design-wise, the Godin 5th Avenue is both beautiful and practical. The arched top and back are more comfortable to play standing than many body shapes. The dark stain and f-holes give it an almost classical look. It’s lightweight, too, so it won’t strain your back. From headstock to bridge, this is an easy-playing instrument designed to complement the human voice beautifully, easily making this one of the best electric guitars for singer/songwriters around.

Jim Soloway demoing a Godin 5th Avenue CW Kingpin ii

Electric Guitar for Singer/Songwriter 3: PRS SE Custom 24

You don’t have to use a hollow-body electric as a singer/songwriter. This SE Custom 24 from Paul Reed Smith is an easy to play and versatile instrument. The wide thin neck is good for strumming, and it has a lot of modern features that make it ideal for singer/songwriters.

The PRS Custom 24 uses dual humbucker pickups with a 3-way switch. Both positions are wired for easy coil-splitting if you want to simulate a single-coil sound, though many singers prefer the humbucker sound, especially in genres like folk or jazz.

Another unique feature of this guitar is the tremolo bridge. You don’t find this on many models other than Strats, and it can be a fun effect to play with, adding more movement to your music. The overall versatility of this guitar is what earned it a spot on our list.

The SE Custom 24 Zebrawood | PRS Guitars

Electric Guitar for Singer/Songwriter 4: Squier by Fender Affinity Telecaster

If you’re looking for something on the cheaper end of the spectrum, the Telecaster makes an excellent guitar for a singer-songwriter. When played clean, it has a clear, relatively transparent tone that can be suited to nearly any vocal style. It also gives you a three-way pickup selector, putting a variety of tones right at your fingertips.

The Squier Telecaster is an easy-playing guitar, too. It uses a modern C neck, one that’s easy to adjust to whether you normally play acoustic or electric. The top-loaded bridge is designed to make changing the strings easy, and it holds intonation well while you’re playing.

Squier instruments are an excellent affordable alternative to their Fender counterparts. They’re well-built instruments made with high-quality components, and that makes them an excellent value. Telecasters are the chameleons of the electric guitar world, found in nearly every style and genre. For a singer/songwriter, this versatility makes it a great choice.

Squier by Fender Affinity Telecaster Competition Orange - Review Demo

Electric Guitar for Singer/Songwriter: What About the Amp?

The guitar itself is only half the equation when it comes to an electric set-up. While you might choose to use amplification for an acoustic, for an electric guitar, it’s an integral part of the sound. Which amp you choose can be just as important for getting the right tone as the instrument itself.

If you’re mostly playing solo gigs, you won’t need a very big amp to get the job done. A 1X12” amp (see a bunch here) or even a 1X10” one (a ton here) amplifier can give you the perfect output to balance well with a human voice. Look for an amp that’s designed to play well clean. While valve amplifiers tend to have a more vocal quality, the array of effects and models available on many solid state amps can give you more colors to work with.

Don’t forget about the amp when you’re planning your budget. You’ll want to leave yourself at least a couple hundred dollars for an amp that’s worth taking out to gigs. Keep this in mind when you’re deciding how much you can afford to spend on your guitar.

So What’s the Best Electric Guitar for Singer/Songwriters?

In our opinion, you can’t go wrong with the Godin 5th Avenue Kingpin. It’s beautiful both to listen to and look at, and is easy to play no matter what your guitar background. The hollow-body construction gives it an acoustic-like sound, with just the right amount of electric edge from the pickups.

These are all great options for a singer/songwriter, though. Think about what styles you normally play in and whether you want a brighter or a darker overall tone. Listening to the guitars above can help you decide which one will suit your needs best. Best of luck in your search!

  • Micah Johnson started playing music in high school, when he taught himself the bass to join his friend’s band. He added guitar and drums during his twenties playing in local clubs, and along the way, he picked up unique, hands-on experience from hand drums to studio mixers. On Song Simian, he aims to share this knowledge from 20+ years playing and recording music. When not in gearhead mode, he enjoys photography and travel.

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