Les Paul celebration will commence in 2013 and will last throughout the year. In honor of these events, Gibson is refreshing and updating the catalog with new color options, hardware options and finally, new models. One of new models is the fantastic Les Paul `70s tribute dedicated to Les Paul`s work and innovations introduced back in the `70s. Thus, this model comes with a tested and tried set of appointments. Body is made of mahogany back and maple top. Mahogany is strategically chambered to make it easier on player`s shoulders and to improve the resonance. Maple top is carved and made of two pieces of wood. This type of top is still installed on modern Les Paul models. There is no binding around the top and pickguard is left out of the specs list, as well. Bridge section of this model is equipped with Les Paul`s faithful tune-o-matic bridge and stoptail bar combo. These come with chrome plating and represent the best non-locking top-load bridge option available on the market. Pickups on original Les Paul models from the 1970s were hot, heavy and had unbelievable sustain for that period. Dirty Fingers humbuckers are installed on this tribute model in an attempt to recreate that ferocity and Gibson nailed it perfectly. These open-coil bad boys are controlled with separate volume and tone knobs. Switching is done through a three-way toggle switch. Neck is made of solid mahogany and it features period correct mid `70s contour on the back. It is set-in and topped with a rosewood fingerboard. 22 medium jumbo frets, acrylic trapezoid inlays, 12" radius and 1-11/16" corian nut are featured on the fingerboard. Standard set of color options is assigned to this model and it includes options available on other Les Paul Tribute models made for 2013: Gold Top, Wine Red, Vintage Sunburst and Ebony. They are all finished in satin. Grover supplies kidney bean tuners for this model, as well, though Gibson offers the robotic tuners alternative. The MSRP for this model is set at standard $1,599.
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In about 1990, I sold my 1979 Gibson "The Paul". Biggest mistake I ever made, and soon after, I stopped playing guitar altogether. Not just because I did not have that guitar anymore, but that was at least a part of it. Ever since, I have been trying to find a guitar that felt as good. Google "The Paul", and you will see that quite a few people hold them as one of the best playing guitars Gibson ever made. I have tried Standards, Customs and historic reissues, and never found anything that felt like my old guitar...until I picked this up. It is a little heavier, and it is arch-topped like a proper Les Paul (The Paul is slab topped), but the neck on this guitar made me instantly feel at home, and instantly fall in love. It is slim, but not thin, and maybe a touch wider than most. The radius feels great, the angle of the neck to the body is bang on. It feels as close to my The Paul as I can not tell any difference. The pups are Dirty Fingers, and these are the hottest pups Gibson have produced, and hotter than anything else I have played. I was plugged into some Roland amp in the shop, on the clean channel, but with the guitar volume on 10, it forced the amp into some gorgeous blues crunch overdrive. I had to back the volume on the pups to about 7 to get a truly clean tone! The crunch as deliciously gritty and gnarly, and very responsive to right hand input. The neck pickup was very warm, but did not appreciably loose definition - every string was audible. The bridge was a little bright for me with full tone, but rolling it off a bit brought it into line. The cleans were lovely as well, also very warm sounding, but without too much muddiness that you might expect from such high output pups. It is 20 years nearly since I played, and in that time I met my wife, so she did not even know I used to play. Now I have to convince her I need to spend this amount on my "first guitar" (even tough I used to indulge in a bit of "play along with Randy"), but I am not going to compromise, because after years of waiting, I believe Gibson have just produced their first perfect guitar since they stopped production of the first The Paul in 1982.
I should just have mentioned the fret ends. They are not finished, and to my hands, felt trike they just need a little extra rolling off at the edges of the board. They were not sharp, as I found them to be on the LPJ, they just need 5 minutes with a file, and an hour or so with some 0000wire wool.
Gibson Les Paul `70s Tribute 4.50 out of 5 based on 1 ratings
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