Shedding some of the low-midrange muscle for bright and powerful top end, this '55 Junior would give any vintage Esquire a run for its money.
What To Know
This 1955 Gibson Les Paul Junior is one of those great early examples that maintains some of the quirks of a vintage wraptail Gibson while still delivering on top-level tone and playability.
One thing we noticed right out of the gate is the tone that the original dogear P90 brings to the table. It's decidedly brighter and clearer sounding than others we've heard, with a really strong fundamental presence that surrounds each note/string and an overall steeliness to the tone. It sounds absolutely heavenly into a clean or slightly broken-up tube amp, and sizzles with a butter-cutting voice with more gain behind it. Coupled with the ultra-responsive volume and tone controls, there's no shortage of tonal nuance and sweet spots to be found.
The full C neck is just lovely - a deep C carve with lean shoulders and a soft taper make it very comfortable to play while also filling out the hand. The original small frets maintain most of their metal to allow for continued ease of play, and the Brazilian Rosewood fingerboard is so rich and dark looking it could almost pass as Ebony.
With just a repro set of tuners to replace the original Klusons that have suffered the fate of many a vintage tuner set - deteriorating buttons - the guitar remains about as original as you'll come across, including the short stud bushings, wraparound bridge/tailpiece, wiring harness, and plastics. Even the original alligator chipboard case has survived!
All in all, it's a great second-year Junior that would satiate collectors and players alike.
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