2011 Gibson Custom Shop Eric Clapton 1960 VOS Les Paul Standard
2011 Gibson Custom Eric Clapton 1960 Les Paul Standard. VOS
A legendary guitar for a legendary guitarist, and arguably the player that brought the Les Paul model back into popularity. Known affectionately as the ‘Beano Burst’ due to Clapton's incendiary playing on John Mayall and the Bluesbreakers' Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton album of 1966 (forever to be known as "The Beano Album" because Clapton himself was reading a Beano comic book in the LP's cover photo). The sound of the guitar plugged into a cranked Marshall Bluesbreaker amplifier would leave a lasting effect on the sound of blues and rock for years to come, the once under appreciated Les Paul Standard of 1958-1960 was now firmly back in the spotlight. This groundbreaking guitars fate was sealed when stolen in 1966 whilst rehearsing with his new group Cream and never recovered.
With close cooperation with Eric Clapton the Gibson Custom team set out to reproduce this iconic instrument in limited numbers as the Gibson Custom Eric Clapton 1960 Les Paul Standard. This would lead to its own challenges with no original instrument to analyse but through collaboration with Clapton, the examination of photographs of the original instrument and several prototypes the final 500 guitars were released with 350 guitars finished with Gibson's proprietary Vintage Original Spec (VOS) treatment, 95 guitars were hand aged by Gibsons In house finish specialist Tom Murphy with a final 55 not only aged by Tom Murphy but hand-signed by Clapton himself. 5 of these were kept by Eric himself.
The guitar is in excellent+ condition and has only been played occasionally to check it over, this particular guitar (number 200 of 350) has a very pleasing maple top, the figuring is present from all angles with the natural looking flame set off perfectly by the hand applied nitrocellulose Antiquity Burst replicating the softened Cherry Sunburst finish of an original Sunburst Les Paul. The neck is a thinner neck profile and although smaller than the profile of a ’59 neck it feels considerably larger than the later 60’s ‘Blade’ necks. The profile is very comfortable with the 1 11/16th nut width giving you the instantly familiar Gibson feel. The one piece lightweight mahogany body joins the neck at a period correct angle of 4º with the desired long-tenon joint. The guitar holds tune well thanks in part to the nickel Grover Rotomatic tuners (a common mod) that Clapton added to his original and the nickel-plated ABR-1 Tune-O-Matic bridge and lightweight aluminium stopbar tailpiece. The guitar sounds outstanding, featuring two custom designed 'Custom Bucker' Humbucker pickups that feature slightly mismatched coils wound with accurate turns of 42 AWG enamel-coated wire, just like original PAFs from the era, and are made with genuine Alnico III magnets. Into a cranked valve amp with (or without) a Rangemaster the classic “Bluesbreakers” sound is there.
The Guitar comes with it’s original Custom Shop hardshell case with Clapton's signature silk-screened on the exterior, an engraved leather Certificate of Authenticity, hang tags, warranty card and an unopened copy of John Mayall Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton on CD.