Gibson Les Paul Special
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|Gibson Les Paul Special|
1956 Les Paul Special Singlecut
(reissued model by Epiphone)
1959–1961 (as SG Special)
|Pickup(s)||2 Single-coil, P-90|
|TV Yellow, White, Cherry Red|
The Gibson Les Paul Special is a variation of the Gibson Les Paul guitar. It was introduced in 1955 as a model to be an intermediate between the Gibson Les Paul Junior and the more expensive Gibson Les Paul Standard. Like most of Gibsons other budget models, the Special was produced in a TV Yellow finish, which was made by Gibson as a finish that would look good on black and white television. In 1958, the model received a major change when it was introduced as a doublecut model instead of the traditional singlecut.
In 1961, the Les Paul received a drastic change when it was formed into what we know today as the Gibson SG. Once Les Paul's contract had expired later that year, the Les Paul submodels changed with it. In 1968, when the contract was renewed, the original models were rebooted, and Gibson and Gibson Custom Shop now offer a total of four Les Paul special models: two single cut and two double cut.
1960 SG Special
(renamed from "Les Paul Special Doublecut" in 1959)
- Duchossoir 1998, p. 210
- "The Gibson Les Paul Special". Vintage Guitar (magazine) (June 2007).
When the Les Pauls came back in the 1970s, the Special proved more popular than the Junior. In fact, the Junior was nowhere to be seen until 1987, while the Special reappeared as early as 1972 in a single-cutaway version, one of which became the main axe of reggae legend Bob Marley. The double-cutaway version became a separate model when it was reintroduced in ’76 as the Les Paul Special Double Cutaway.
- Achard, Ken (1989). History and Development of the American Guitar. Bold Strummer Ltd. ISBN 978-0-933224-18-6.
- Hunter, Dave (2006). The Electric Guitar Sourcebook: How to Find the Sounds You Like. Backbeat Books. ISBN 978-0-87930-886-5.
- Duchossoir, A. R. (1998). "Les Paul Special & SG Special". Gibson Electrics: The Classic Years: An Illustrated History of the Electric Guitars Produced by Gibson Up to the Mid-1960s. Musical Instruments Series (revised ed.). Hal Leonard Corporation. p. 210. ISBN 978-0-79359210-4.
The Les Paul Special was introduced in 1955 as an intermediate model between the regular Les Paul guitar and the lower-priced Junior and TV instruments. Like the latter, the Special underwent two successive body redesigns in 1958 and 1961 while the Les Paul affiliation was discontinued in late 1959. The model was then renamed SG Special without any apparent changes in the specification other than the removal of Les Paul marking. Overall four variants of the Special can be distinguished between 1955 and 1965.”, “Les Paul Special (1955-1958) ...”, “Les Paul Special (1959) ...”, “SG Special (1959-1961) ...”, “SG Special (1961-...”