Played a great Les Paul - now I get it

effectsman

Member
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3,698
Yesterday at Guitar Brothers in Brisbane I went in looking to try a Roland Blues Cube. They always have a good selection of Les Pauls and being a sucker for gold tops I asked Dave the salesman to grab the gold top for me.

He said that it was seriously the best of the bunch they currently have by a big margin. And he wasn't kidding. I think I'm getting this right in saying it is a 2016 Gibson Custom Shop reissue based on the 58 or 59 that the head of Gibson owns. It was quite light for a LP but man did it ring. Dave was playing these three note chords and letting every string ring out and it sounded deep, but clear, and the notes had a real pop to them like they jumped out of the guitar. We played it clean through a Bogner ATMA, and then plugged into the 69 channel on a Bogner Goldfinger for some dirt.

Seriously I could not find a bad sound on any string, in any pickup position, or at any combination of volume and tone controls. Everything was useable, clear and musical. No mud, no dullness, no honk in either the high or low strings.

Really amazing example of what a guitar can sound like. I played an ES339 after it that just sounded like rubbish with a wooly honky lows and more brittle highs. Not a bad instrument and on any other day I would just accept it as part of the normal issues with Gibsons. I've played other LPs and 335s and 339s there plenty of times.

Dave was right. It is definitely a special guitar! Now I seriously get what the LP love is about. You could play ANY style of music on that guitar and have it sound great.
 

Geeze

Member
Messages
2,444
It is definitely a special guitar!

Tucky!?! You didn't take it home?!? That one will haunt you.

I have always liked the LP sound but the neck has consistently been a deal killer. Having been ruined with Jackson style necks the thought of playing with a baseball bat has never appealed to me. Then last summer on a 'see what used amps they have' whim visit to a local shop I picked up a 2013 Standard with the asymmetrical neck. Oh crap. Great tone and sustain. Now the Jackson gets sparing use.

Love the LP.

Russ
 

Alex Najarian

Senior Member
Messages
1,074
It's the Stradivarius of guitars for a reason.

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https://soundcloud.com/alex-najarian
 

twoheadedboy

Member
Messages
14,698
Yesterday at Guitar Brothers in Brisbane I went in looking to try a Roland Blues Cube. They always have a good selection of Les Pauls and being a sucker for gold tops I asked Dave the salesman to grab the gold top for me.

He said that it was seriously the best of the bunch they currently have by a big margin. And he wasn't kidding. I think I'm getting this right in saying it is a 2016 Gibson Custom Shop reissue based on the 58 or 59 that the head of Gibson owns. It was quite light for a LP but man did it ring. Dave was playing these three note chords and letting every string ring out and it sounded deep, but clear, and the notes had a real pop to them like they jumped out of the guitar. We played it clean through a Bogner ATMA, and then plugged into the 69 channel on a Bogner Goldfinger for some dirt.

Seriously I could not find a bad sound on any string, in any pickup position, or at any combination of volume and tone controls. Everything was useable, clear and musical. No mud, no dullness, no honk in either the high or low strings.

Really amazing example of what a guitar can sound like. I played an ES339 after it that just sounded like rubbish with a wooly honky lows and more brittle highs. Not a bad instrument and on any other day I would just accept it as part of the normal issues with Gibsons. I've played other LPs and 335s and 339s there plenty of times.

Dave was right. It is definitely a special guitar! Now I seriously get what the LP love is about. You could play ANY style of music on that guitar and have it sound great.

Glad you had that experience. It took me quite a few years of playing to encounter a really good Les Paul. I had written them off as always sounding unclear and not holding tuning in my hands. Playing a good one was a big revelation, so much so that my only electric guitar is now a Les Paul. Not sure how relevant this is to you, but I've found that many of the Les Pauls from the early 1990s seem to work really well for me.
 

effectsman

Member
Messages
3,698
Tucky!?! You didn't take it home?!? That one will haunt you.

I have always liked the LP sound but the neck has consistently been a deal killer. Having been ruined with Jackson style necks the thought of playing with a baseball bat has never appealed to me. Then last summer on a 'see what used amps they have' whim visit to a local shop I picked up a 2013 Standard with the asymmetrical neck. Oh crap. Great tone and sustain. Now the Jackson gets sparing use.

Love the LP.

Russ

Yes it will haunt me I fear. I've never owned or played another guitar that is even close to it.

Here in Australia though Gibsons are quite expensive. It was reduced from $10,999 to $7,999. The standards and traditionals go for about $4.5K here.
 

1941WillysMB

Member
Messages
684
I've never been able to bond with a LP, I really want to like them, but my experience has always been less than satisfactory.

Until my coworker decided to store his 79 custom in the climate controlled server room. Not a particularly coveted year, but anytime he's let me borrow it I absolutely love playing it.

I've shown up at work with a fistful of cash to no avail. It was his dad's guitar and sentiment has doomed that poor guitar to live out it's days in the back of a lonely basement room, only to be played by me on my lunch break.
 

guitarded_1

Member
Messages
1,349
in my personal experience, the historic LPs have positively blown away all of the other LPs I have sampled. My R7 and R8 feel and sound quite different from each other , but they're both simply stellar.
 

Alex Najarian

Senior Member
Messages
1,074
in my personal experience, the historic LPs have positively blown away all of the other LPs I have sampled. My R7 and R8 feel and sound quite different from each other , but they're both simply stellar.
This is absolutely true. The only 2 Les Pauls that I still own, are my Classic Premium Plus and 59 Standard. The reason I still own them, unlike the many which I have sold, is because they sound so much better. Of course, unless you have played one, you might not know that the others are duds.

If he found one of these special Les Pauls, he needs to commit to it and not let it go because of money. Put a deposit on it and milk cows if you have to, in order to covet the money necessary to buy it over time.

I bought my '59 LP, pictured above, many decades ago, without a dollar in my pocket. I borrowed from my friend, put down a deposit and did whatever I had to do, work-wise, in the next month to make enough money to pay it off. I still have it to this day and will not part ways until I die. Yes, I have been offered enormous amounts of money for it but I won't sell it.
 
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MichiganEsquire

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
1,156
To me great Les Pauls convey an unmistakeable and immediate feeling that "this is the one." Glad you got to experience it!

Personally, I'm not a fan of the Historics as I had extremely poor luck with them despite going through about 10 to 15 over the past few years. Anecdotal perhaps, but I've found vintage (even non-golden era guitars) to be better on average and often cheaper too. So, don't lose heart if you don't ultimately buy this particular guitar.
 
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effectsman

Member
Messages
3,698
Was it this model: http://www.gibson.com/Products/Elec...llectors-Choice-12-1957-Les-Paul-Goldtop.aspx

I don't know your financial situation but if you really feel that way about the guitar then maybe try to buy it?

Yes that's it. It was reliced which I don't like, but it just was such a MUSICAL guitar. As I said I've played a couple of good ones from time to time at that shop. A historic and a traditional come to mind. They had a Jimmy Page Custom Shop there as well and Dave said no competition even though the JP was more expensive again.

Can afford $4.5 if I sell some gear. $8 is probably too big a stretch. Got to get a house first. House prices in Australia have become crazy.
 

zeffbeff

Member
Messages
2,336
Totally. I've bought and sold a couple Les Paul's. But I finally wound up with a Special (dual humbucker) and all the pieces fit. It can do no wrong!

Sometimes you just gotta luck upon the right one..
 

Sean French

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
14,725
Can afford $4.5 if I sell some gear. $8 is probably too big a stretch. Got to get a house first. House prices in Australia have become crazy.

You can always find a nice house. A guitar that you immediately bond with that sings to you as the heavens part is extremely rare.
 

majorminor

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
1,819
Fender guy here and my #1 is a 2014 R7. Mostly because I know I can find a good strat or tele pretty easily. I must have went through 8 or 9 solid and chambered historic Les Pauls before I found my gold top. When you click with one its a tough bond to break.
 

HoboMan

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
19,313
I played SGs exclusively for about 30 years. Owned several Les Pauls (including a 50s goldtop) but never got along with the weight or lack of upper register access.

A couple of years ago I saw a local cover band and the guy was playing a Black Les Paul with a creme pickguard and loved the look. Found a used Classic on craiglist. Met the guy it Guitar Center parking lot. When he pulled it out of his trunk and handed it to me I was shocked at how light it was. I bought it on the spot.

After doing some research I found out it is chambered. Weighs 7.6 lbs. I put in a set of Dimarzio 36th Anniversary PUs and had it refretted with SS frets. This is seriously one of the best sounding/playing guitars I've ever owned. Every time I plug it in I am floored by the tone. It just sings, tons of sustain and the tone is crisp, punchy, crunchy, clear, biting and smooth all at the same time.

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