Monday, February 25, 2008

2000 Gibson Gary Moore Signature Les Paul

Here we have a very nice Gibson Les Paul. It is a Gary Moore model from the year 2000. It's in a very rare and unique transparent black finish. You'll be hard-pressed to see another one like this anywhere else. I purchased this guitar from my local vintage guitar shop. I saw it hanging on the wall and could not believe it was a Gary Moore model, even though the words "Gary Moore" were engraved on the truss rod cover.

All the Gibson literature I've come across proclaims that this model was only available in a "lemon burst" finish. After I purchased the guitar, however, I contacted Gibson about the unusual color. They wrote me back within 24 hours and informed me that the transparent black finish was not part of normal production. They did acknowledge, however, that mine was a Gary Moore model based on the serial number. With respect to the finish, in their words, "it could have been custom/special ordered, or even just a small run were done this way." If anyone out there owns one like mine, I would love to know. In any event, this is a wonderful guitar that I feel very fortunate to own.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

1986 Fender American Standard Stratocaster

What better way to inaugurate my guitar-related blog than with an American classic. This is my most recent purchase. It is a first-year Fender American Standard Stratocaster. I've wanted a 70s strat for a while, but prices on these appear to be artificially inflated. I've been told that in the 80s it was cheaper to buy a 70s strat than a new American Standard. This situation has apparently reversed itself, so I opted for this 1986 American Standard in Inca Silver. I think these 80s American Standards are of outstanding quality compared to newer strats.
Before I decided on this one, I went to a vintage shop where I tried a number of strats. I tried everything from vintage reissues to custom shop items. I then saw an 80s American Standard in the "cheaper strat section" and I decided to try it. That 80s standard played and sounded better than all the other "$1,000 or more" strats I tried. But I didn't like the color.
Then I saw this one online and the price was right, so I bought it. I am very happy with this guitar. I had never understood why so many guitarists went gaga over strats. I can now say that I finally get it. This humble stratocaster plays, sounds and feels amazing.