A natural relic that has been acquired from regular use, is one way to describe this used Gibson Les Paul Deluxe, with a classic cherry sunburst finish and a date of birth from 1981 – Most of us know that you can now buy a used guitar with that aged finish, to replicate a few years of use in smokey gin joints – This Les Paul has acquired all its played in character thanks to the traditional method of sheer hard work – Granted it may look to worn for many, but despite the condition of the nitro finish, the guitar is self is in fine fettle and will be fine to work hard in any environment for many many more years
A few key details :-
- The whole guitar comes in at 10lbs and 2oz – not the lightest LP, but a common feature on many 70’s, 80’s and 90’s model
- One piece mahogany body with a 3 piece maple top
- 3 piece maple neck with a dark chocolate rosewood fingerboard – medium plus C profile that measures .859″ around the top nut end and .997″ around the 12th fret
- Re-fret with a set of medium jumbo frets – more on this below
- All original chrome hardware through out including a set of Kluson style machine heads with metal tulip buttons
- Includes a pair of original Gibson mini-humbuckers that only just measure 6k
- Includes a non-original but still a Gibson black Les Paul case
Condition wise and the pics don’t lie but maybe they tell a story that looks worse than it is – There are no defects with regards to the guitars ability to perform – New frets – Clean pots and all the tuners function correctly – So plenty of played in wear and character
Playing performance :- The neck has a comfortable and rounded C profile – Certainly not as chunky as those vintage 50’s replica models, yet neither can it be called slim – Medium plus depth in my opinion with just enough meat to add substance without hindering the paying performance – The lacquer on the rear of the neck has been cut back to bare wood, through regular use and as such it feels totally played in – The neck feels very smooth – The re-fret to me is what makes this guitar perform so much better – Medium jumbo size frets that are now extend to over the fingerboard binding, so no nibs – Slick playing action and effortless plus controlled string bending, hence so much better than the original spec thanks to this re-fret – The original frets would tend to have had a lower/fat profile, with flatter tops to the frets itself – Such a professional refret eliminates this ‘old style’ feel and allows for a playing experience that is overall nice and slick – I’ve sold and seen many Gibson Guitars from the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s that have under gone such work and as such totally revitalised the actual playing performance – Re-strung and set-up with a set of 10’s
Tonal character :- I suppose Pete Townshend and Scott Gorham are two of the most well known users of a Les Paul Deluxe – Overall the LP Deluxe tone, compared to a Standard or Custom, is a lot more spanky, crisp and lively, with far less in the way of fat mids – The mini humbuckers are actually quite low powered, certainly compared to most conventional humbuckers and these two barely measure 6K – Yet maybe un-known to many is that the mini humbucker on an LP Deluxe is totally different to that found on a Firebird, certainly with regards to spec, windings and magnets – Yes they look similar until you look ‘under the bonnet’ – It doesn’t sound like a Strat or a Tele but it does possess a similar attack, response, snap , bite and clarity – As such it ensures that chords have great definition, be you choosing to play them through a clean or overdriven amp setting – Think of those Doobie Brothers style introductions – Regarding its use as a rock overdriven guitar, then don’t expect it to sound like Gary Moore or Joe Bonamassa as it is far less fat, smooth and moody, yet it has its own place and character – You can load the amp with loads of gain if required, but somehow I feel it works better with less gain – Maybe it is more about melodic and simplistic licks, as against the classic whailling blues licks that are played on many vintage based Les Paul’s – Maybe more suitable in an Indie style band, or a Tom Petty, Paul Weller style band were melody and licks are more the order of the day – Maybe I’m explaining more about what it isn’t or doesn’t do, as against what it does and maybe that is because as a reference point to an LP Standard, it is easier to explain – The neck pick-up is rich but again with far more almost single coil clarity – The bridge pick-up is bright with attack and again more of a Tele bite character to it – It is a Les Paul but in a different way and certainly brings its own unique voice to the table
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