Gibson Collectors Choice No8 Bernie Marsden 1959 Les Paul
Gibson Custom’s Collector’s Choice™ series is devoted to painstaking replication of choice original vintage Les Pauls. As a result, these guitars bring players and collectors closer to owning a specific, existing vintage Les Paul than anything else available on the market. The latest in the series—Collector’s Choice™ #8 1959 Les Paul “The Beast”—embodies everything that made the 1959 Les Paul legendary in the first place, in the exacting image of a true workhorse ’Burst that has toured the stages and studios of the world in the hands of a legendary rocker. British guitarist Bernie Marsden is one of rock’s true road warriors. As a founding member of Whitesnake and guitarist with several other bands, projects, and notable solo artists, Bernie has laid down some of rock’s hottest riffs for more than five decades, and his prized 1959 Les Paul, serial number 9–1914, has been there through it all. Through the collaboration between the craftspeople at Gibson Custom and the generous cooperation of owner/artist Bernie Marsden himself, this hallowed ’Burst now comes to life in a strictly Limited Edition with a maximum of 300 guitars, all representing every detail of this road-tested veteran, from its faded “Dirty Lemon” finish, to its patina and playing wear—and most of all, its feel and tone.
The process of creating a Collector’s Choice™ guitar involves detailed hands-on analysis of the original, along with intimate digital scanning and precise measurement of every output and specification. The exceptional accuracy used to craft Collector’s Choice™ #8 1959 Les Paul “The Beast” includes attaining similar lightweight, one-piece mahogany bodies and similarly figured carved maple tops, recreating the precise beefy ’50s neck to match the original’s distinctive and individual profile, and developing a custom-wound set of pickups that includes a Burstbucker #2 in the neck and a Burstbucker #3 in the bridge to recreate The Beast’s unique chimey-to-throaty tone range. To take it all further, Gibson Custom accurately matches every nuance of the finish aging and playing wear found on the original, with the result that the final guitars have been thoroughly approved by Bernie himself for adherence to the original’s look, feel, and tone.
In addition to being an uncannily accurate recreation of a legendary guitar, Collector’s Choice™ #8 1959 Les Paul “The Beast” also features Gibson Custom’s 20th Anniversary Historic Specifications, which bring the Custom Shop reproductions closer to the real thing than ever before. These specifications, introduced for 2013, include a single-layer rosewood fingerboard, hot hide glue neck joint, accurate fingerboard and body binding color, historically accurate truss rod assembly, and genuine aniline dye for the guitar’s back, neck, and sides. Further period-correct details are found in the neck’s nylon 6/6 nut, holly headstock veneer with pearl Gibson logo, reissue Kluson™ Deluxe tuners, ABR-1 bridge with lightweight aluminum stopbar tailpiece, Bumble Bee tone caps, and more. For player’s and collector’s seeking the look, feel, and tone of an exceptional original 1959 Les Paul Model guitar played and loved by a respected artist, Collector’s Choice™ #8 1959 Les Paul “The Beast” represents a rare opportunity.
The guitar will be produced in no fewer than 25 and no more than 300 examples, depending on the availability of suitable materials, and each will include a silkscreened brown Custom Shop hardshell case and owner’s manual and a Custom Shop Collector’s Choice™ #8 Artist Certificate of Authenticity.