Still Leading the Way
Gibson has always been known for its pioneering ways. All you have to do is look at the company’s rich history of legendary guitars to see that it’s never been afraid to take a risk. Look at the Les Paul. The Flying V. Or the Explorer and the SG. All were guitars way ahead of their time. The point is this: Gibson has never backed away from taking chances, and the newest guitar of the 2009 Limited Run Series – the Les Paul Florentine with Bigsby Tailpiece – is simply another example of Gibson’s dedication to keep defying the norm, and building on its exclusive guitar heritage.
Practical, Innovative, and True to Tradition
The new 2009 Limited Run Series Les Paul Florentine with Bigsby Tailpiece is a masterpiece in form and functionality. Using Gibson’s iconic Les Paul Standard as its base design, the new Limited Run Series model combines the Les Paul’s legendary characteristics with avant-garde features to keep it one step ahead of everything else. This new Les Paul Florentine with Bigsby Tailpiece guitar from Gibson USA combines the classic appointments of the Les Paul with a few of Gibson’s most functional and practical attributes. First and foremost, the standard Les Paul cutaway gives way to the wider and deeper Florentine Cutaway. First used in 1902 on Gibson’s O-style guitars, and normally found on such legendary Gibson models as the Byrdland, the ES-175 and the ES-295, the Florentine Cutaway design comfortably enhances a player’s reach to the higher register of notes. The elegant, sharply pointed form also adds another dimension to the already classic look of the Les Paul.
The Bigsby Vibrato Tailpiece
The second – and most prominent – feature of the new 2009 Limited Run Series Les Paul Florentine is the addition of the legendary chrome Bigsby vibrato tailpiece. Essentially the same design as when it was introduced in the mid 1940s, the Bigsby vibrato tailpiece model B7 allows players the ability to bend the pitch of notes or entire chords for vintage-style vibrato. It has been a fixture on many legendary Gibson guitars, and was named after its late inventor, Paul A. Bigsby, who sold his Bigsby Guitar company to legendary former Gibson President Ted McCarty in 1966. This classic piece of guitar hardware performs flawlessly thanks to several added enhancements such as a white graphite nut for smooth string action, a set of locking Grover tuners to help keep the strings in tune, and a Schaller roller bridge to help the strings go back to the original tuning after using the Bigsby vibrato.
Gibson’s BurstBucker Pro™ Pickups
Gibson’s drive to recapture the magic of the original “Patent Applied For” humbucker pickups of the 1950s culminated with the introduction of the BurstBucker™ line in the early 1990s. Those BurstBuckers™ — Types 1, 2, and 3 — successfully captured the subtle variations of true, classic humbucker tone with historically “unmatched” bobbin windings and Alnico II magnets. In 2002, Gibson followed up this innovative accomplishment with yet another breakthrough in pickup design — the BurstBucker Pro™, designed specifically for the new Les Paul Standards. The BurstBucker Pro™ features an Alnico V magnet (instead of the Alnico II), which offers slightly higher output and allows preamps to be driven a little harder to achieve a more natural break-up. Like all BurstBuckers™, the BurstBucker Pro™ has asymmetrical coils — true to the original PAFs — which supply a more open sound. The BurstBucker Pro™ Neck is wound slightly less than the original PAFs, while the BurstBucker Pro™ Bridge is slightly overwound for increased output. The BurstBucker Pro™ pickups are also wax potted to allow loud volume pressures with minimal feedback.
The Rest is Traditional Les Paul
Of course, the rest of the Les Paul Florentine with Bigsby Tailpiece is a traditional Les Paul. The classic body consists of a solid mahogany back topped by a AA-grade maple top with single-ply antique crème binding. The Les Paul Florentine also sports one of Gibson most traditional finishes, Vintage Sunburst. The neck is the standard Les Paul mahogany neck with Gibson’s new asymmetrical profile and rosewood fingerboard. Like all the guitars from this special series, only 350 of these unique Les Pauls will be produced and distributed. Each one will come with a black Gibson hardshell case and special Limited Run Series certificate of authenticity.