As the only lyricist and composer in my group, I'm starting to feel the need to buy a guitar. I've been playing bass for roughly 3 years, and I'm pretty competent on my crappy 60's Crestwood classical guitar in the way of chords, melody, technique, etc. However, while my guitarist is very technically-capable, he can't write or create much in the way of guitar parts, leaving the job in my hands. So, I need a decent electric, but I know almost nothing about what's out there.

My stuff is quite mellow, trippy, ambient, etc. My influences are mostly jazz (mainly bebop) and acts like Yes, The Alan Parsons Project, Jaco Pastorius, and many others you can see in my profile. I'm mainly looking for a good, solid, general purpose guitar in the $400-$500 price range. I play Fender basses, but I don't know much about their guitars.

A hollow body agile would be good probally.
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i too am a bass player who has ben playing for roughly that amount of time and i know where your comming form becasuse i write guitar parts for my band aswell. a strat is a really good all purpose guitar but you could get an epiphone dot (whihc is a hollow body) for your price range
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Ah yes I forgot to mention- about 2 months ago I ran out a bought a vintage 1963 Aria archtop jazz guitar (having fallen in love with Steve Howe's playing and sound), only to have my ideas and intentions dashed to pieces. It just didn't suit me. The hollow body generated a howling feedback, and the sound of the guitar was almost too muddy and bassy. To sum it up, a hollow body just didn't fit me. I sold it to a friend of mine who was beginning jazz guitar lessons, and he plays it 5-6 hours a day. It's much better off with him.

I'm not saying I want a super-trebly and twangy instrument, it's just that I think I should try some type of solid-body guitar this time around.
errrrr... maybe strat? can do almost anything with a strat, imo. Not sure about prices where you live, but here in vancouver I can go to a music store and buy a strat today, with choice of paint, fretboard wood, trem/hardtail, for $500 CAD. And most likely would not need a pup replacement for what you would be playing.

Ofc, please try one out at a music store before buying... Always wanna know what your getting for your money.
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err, how about the Telecaster?
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