Lovely 2015 Gibson Collectors Choice #29 ’59 Les Paul Standard wonderfully replicated by the talented staff at the Gibson Custom Shop. Unlike the year specific reissues it builds, the Collectors Choice series recreates an individual specific instrument in a limited run providing players and collectors the opportunity to experience the precise look, feel, and tone of some of the rarest original examples.
Based on the original 1959 Les Paul Standard owned by Japanese rock star Tamio Okuda, serial number 9-1165, Collectors Choice #29 was released in a limited run of Aged and VOS instruments, a rare option for the Collectors Choice range. Close analysis of the original instrument has enabled Gibson to recreate details of the original such as the light figuring of the guitar's plain maple top, its distinctive dish carve, the neck profile, a historic truss-rod assembly with no tubing, and its gently faded Sunburst finish.
Other features include a weight selected, non-weight relieved Mahogany back, one piece Mahogany neck with a replicated one of a kind 9-1165 neck carve measuring 2.26 cm /.900 at the 1st fret and 2.54 cm / 1.0" the the 12th. Solid indian Rosewood Fingerboard with aged celluloid Trapezoid inlays and tortoiseshell inlays. Hot hide glue neck body joint just like the original with a 4º neck angle. Hand aged VOS Nitrocellulose finish in a gently faded Sunburst. Electronics comprise of Tamio's choice of ’57 Classic humbuckers with Alnico II magnets, #42 guage enamel wire with True Historic Replica VOS Nickel covers and an medium output of 7.5k with two ‘Bumblebee’ capacitors linked to independent volume and tone controls. Tuning is handled by a set of Reissue Kluson Deluxe w/single ring green buttons and a no-wire nickel ABR-1 bridge w/ lightweight Aluminium tailpiece. Historic gold top hat knobs, ’59 spec pickguard, input jack and pickup surrounds complete the period correct plastics.
This guitar is a number 7 in the run of VOS aged instruments and weighs in at a scant 8.5lbs, right on the sweet spot for a lot of Les Paul players. The ’57 Classic humbuckers are a real bonus in this guitar, the bridge pickup has presence without sounding toppy are a real growl to the lows and lower mids, The neck pickup is warm and articulate with plenty of definition clean and overdriven. The slightly under-wound coils in combination with the Alnico II magnets balance nicely with such a lightweight Les Paul and sound excellent in the middle position.
The guitar is in excellent condition with little fret wear, the finish is as it left the factory with only one or two slight marks from playing. The Gibson case is in equally good condition and the guitar comes with its Collectors Choice trifold certificate and warranty card.
The Collectors Choice instruments we have been lucky enough to have in the shop have never failed to impress and this is a particularly nice example, lightweight and with a distinctive sunburst finish, interesting top with a nice amount of figure, a limited edition appeal and two excellent sounding pickups.