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1972 Gibson showcase brochures
1972 Gibson showcase brochuresIn 1972 Gibson produced a series of 'Guitar of the Month' brochures, each dedicated to one of their high end models, the Les Paul Recording guitar, L5-CES, ES-175D, Super 400-CES, ES-355TD-SV and Byrdland. Each brochure was a single sheet folded into four panels, with details of the instruments themselves, their features, musical purpose, and a little history behind the development of each guitar. Only the Les Paul Recording was a new model; the others were all well established in the Gibson line. Follow the link to see scans and further information on these leaflets and other Gibson guitar catalogues from the CMI and Norlin periods.
1966 Kalamazoo KB-1 bass
Kalamazoo KB-1 bass Gibson assembled these 30 1/2" scale Kalamazoo KB-1 basses in their electronics plant in Kalamazoo, MI - separate from the main Gibson plant. They used the same components and hardware as on the Gibson EB bass series; but with a pre-painted masonite body and a bolt-on maple neck; a very different construction to Gibson's usual output. Initially the KB bass had a Mustang-shaped body (see the 1966 Kalamazoo KB-1, left), which was soon redesigned with the classic SG shape (see the 1967 Kalamazoo KB-1, right). Have a listen to sound clips of this bass here.
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Gibson Les Paul Recording
Low impedance electric solid body

Gibson Les Paul > Les Paul Recording > Schematics

1971 Gibson Les Paul low impedance catalogue
Gibson 1970 Les Paul catalogueThe two precursors to the Les Paul recording (LP professional, and LP personal) were featured in this 1970 Les Paul catalogue



1971 Gibson Les Paul low impedance catalogueThe 1971 Low Impedance brochure was put out to highlight the very different sounds that the new Les Paul recording guitar and Les Paul Triumph bass were capable of producing


1972 Gibson LP recording guitarIn 1972 Gibson launched a flyer devoted to the newly launched LP recording guitar - The Gibson Les Paul Recording Guitar of the Month Showcase. Introduced in 1971, the Les Paul Recording astounded the music world with its extreme versatility and playing performance

1975 Gibson Les Paul catalogueThe Gibson Les Paul Recording Guitar in the 1975 Les Paul catalogue. The materials that make up a Gibson come from the world only

Gibson 1978 full line catalogueThe 1978 Gibson catalogue was the last to feature the Les Paul Recording guitar



The Les Paul Recording guitar evolved from a couple other models, first produced in the late sixties. These were pivotal times for the world guitar markets. Mass production was becoming the norm, and American guitar companies were struggling to compete with their cheaper Japanese rivals. Gibson did not stop experimenting, however, and guitars such as the Les Paul Personal, and Les Paul Professional (with a matching Les Paul Bass) appeared, sporting novel electronics combined with the quality of materials and craftsmanship that Gibson was famous for. These were low impedance instruments designed specifically for recording; 'a guitar that can virtually produce any sound that you would want'. Les Paul describes the thinking behind this series

'For years i've worked to produce a multitude of distinctive guitar sounds. The hang-up was to obtain everything in one guitar, now i'm not talking about gimmickry, i'm talking about the real McCoy; authentic guitar sounds, the type of highs that can rip your ears off, the type of bass response that's clean and clear. Every note must be balanced and offer maximum sustain.'.

Gibson changed hands in December 1969, and number of models changed significantly over the next few years; the Les Paul Bass and Professional guitar were redesigned to become the Les Paul Recording guitar and Les Paul Triumph bass respectively. So in 1971, to launch the newly redesigned models a 4 side low impedance Les Paul catalogue was produced including an interesting flexi-disc demonstrating some of the many sounds possible. The disc was narrated by Les Paul himself, and guitars were played by Bruce Bolen.

Side one featured the Les Paul Recording guitar, whilst side 2 featured a track named Tomorrow, today recorded by Bruce Bolen using both instruments. Have a listen

Controls for the Gibson Les Paul Recording guitar

Controls

Bass, Treble and Volume Self explanetory. The bass and treble have a very wide range.

Decade Control This eleven position switch tunes or alters the treble harmonics. Produce "biting" or "silky" highs with simplicity.

Tone Selector Three settings: 1, 2, and 3.

Phase Control Only works when both pickups are selected.

Impedance Selector Hi for live use or Low for studio use (or live use with a Low-Impedance amplifier).






Vintage advertisements for the Gibson Les Paul Recording

Electric Guitar advertisements originally published from 1972 onwards. Click on the images for larger copies.
Check out other vintage Gibson advertisements

Gibson Les Paul Recording - Say it All With the New Les Paul

Gibson Les Paul Recording - Say it All With the New Les Paul (1972)
Early seventies advertisement for the Gibson Les Paul Recording guitar

Gibson's new Les Paul Recording turns on more guitar sounds than there are guitars! It's...

Gibson Les Paul Recording - If You Ever Lost a Les Paul, You

Gibson Les Paul Recording - If You Ever Lost a Les Paul, You'd Just Have to Buy Another (1972)
Early seventies British advert for the Les Paul Recording guitar, by Selmer, UK Gibson distributors at the time.

A Gibson Les Paul electric guitar is unique. A...

Gibson Les Paul Recording - Show us a man whos too good for a Gibson Les Paul

Gibson Les Paul Recording - Show us a man whos too good for a Gibson Les Paul (1974)
UK ad for the Triumph bass and Les Paul Recording guitar. The add was produced by Selmer who were the British distributors of Gibson Instruments.
...he's flipp...

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There are 1 comments on this article so far. Add your comment
BaddiH Comment left 29th July 2012 19:07:59
Best guitar i've ever played. Great to see all that old literature. Mine has serial number 737189 or maybe 139. I think it is an early 70s model as it has the two post bridge rather than the three post. Can you confirm date at all? Any tone you want. BH

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