The very first Les Paul “Burst”, originally shipped out of the Gibson factory in May of 1958, has come on the market via Carter Vintage Guitars in Nashville, and it could be yours, if you’ve got a spare $625,000.
News 5 has filmed a report on the instrument (see the video clip below), at Carter’s in Nashville. With guitar greats and “Burst” aficionados, Vince Gill and Ed King on hand to give some insight into it’s history, as well as letting us hear the classic instrument in action.
Walter Carter of Carter Vintage Guitars explained that at the time of production, it was simply an experimental piece, stating; “It has a three piece top because it was probably going to be a Goldtop.”
The new “Sunburst” finish was only applied to the Gibson Les Paul between 1958-1960 due to a lack of popularity at the time. However, production later resumed in 1968 after these instruments became the iconic rock guitar thanks to being played by the likes of Keith Richards, Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, Mike Bloomfield, Duane Allman and later Jimmy Page.
Some say it’s the old mahogany wood, the Brazilian board or the hand craftsmanship of the folks at Gibson up in Kalamazoo, Michigan during this era, but whatever the reason, there is no denying that these Les Pauls are pretty special, and with so few made, quite possibly The Holy Grail of electric guitar.