Buddy 9-0423 1959 Les Paul Standard

cnote

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This one is not mine anymore, but I have some pictures from when I owned it. Just sharing for those that may be interested. Notable about this guitar:

-Neck is not big, even though it was an earlier 1959 Standard. At about 0.86-0.95, with no shoulder. Everyone that played it commented on how much they were surprised by and liked the neck. The current 2018 59 reissues I think are nailing the shape and size of the neck of this old Burst.
- The bridge did not sit very low against the body - the neck angle was a little steeper than some.
- Well-worn, but no checking. Was in Texas its whole life.
- The original owner Buddy, who had the Bigsby installed, had put stickers spelling his name on the pickguard, and the sticker shadow has branded the guitar "Buddy" forevermore.
- Weight was average at about 8.75 lbs
- Flatsawn back and flitch matched flatsawn/riftsawn top with riftsawn neck
- Original electronics and PAFs, covers never removed - Bumblebees are PIO
- I bought it from Eric Johnson, who had the guitar refretted with his special wire. Otherwise, the guitar is all original.
- When Steve Miller played it live, he told me it sounded like Dickie Betts to him, and Steve would then discuss the guitar later in a September 2010 Vintage Guitar article, saying:

"We were doing a tribute for (late bandmate) Norton Buffalo at the Fox Theater in Oakland in January; he graciously brought all 3 - the '59 was formerly Eric Johnson's, with 'Buddy' written on the pickguard. It was great to play the real deal and see what it really sounded like 'cuz I hadn't played a real '59 in so long, you know? And it was this lovely, sweet, clear-sounding guitar. It had all the stuff you wanted, and its lower strings had a clearer tone. You had to crank the amp up a little more, but once you did, the thing started to sing. It wasn't as hot as a Burstbucker pickup but it was clearer-sounding and a little sweeter, more musical. That's why I started looking at Les Pauls again. I thought "Okay, I get it."

Enjoy!




Cathedral grain flatsawn back.


Note the oblique orientation of the cathedral grain in the neck.


Note the bite mark in the upper left - a consecutive series of guitars in this serial number range in early 1959 had this feature.
Note the PIO Bumblebee caps - not all Bursts had PIO caps.

This is one of those bursts where the truss rod cover is originally very close to the nut - some are more widely spaced.


That's a 2009 50th Anni Gold Certificate reissue in the background.

Here it is on stage with a 1955 Strat and 1953 GT, waiting for Steve Miller. It was a thrill listening from the floor as my guitars got played at stage volume by Steve. Great guy.

Eric Johnson owned it before me, and had it refretted.


Eric had bought it from the original owner, Buddy, a preacher who had a Bigsby installed at the store.
 

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RAG7890

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Awesome C, thanks heaps for posting Buddy. You remembered. :thumbs: :applause: :applause: :applause:

Great to see some interesting Vintage Guitars being posted in the Vintage Section for all the Members to enjoy. :)

Will follow up with the ‘57 GT in the next weekend or so. ;)

Cheers, Rudi.
 
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dc007

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Don't know how a vintage buyer would think about the pickguard on this one but to me it is very cool just because its such a cool story.
 

Red Pharoah

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Thanks for the great pics C note! I think Eric used this guitar for some songs on his "Bloom" CD. EJ is one of my favorite guitarists and has his own great unique sound. Always has great tone and technique no matter what guitar he plays. And also a talented piano player, singer and songwriter. He is a "Alien Love Child" much like myself!
 

bblooz

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Thanks for sharing this cool story about "Buddy". I hope the new caretaker loves her as much as you obviously did.
 

joeh77

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Thanks for sharing!

Just saw EJ a few weeks ago on his Ah Via Musicom tour. No humbucker guitars for EJ on this tour, but plenty of tone anyway!

I actually saw EJ open for Steve Miller way back when. They played a few numbers together at the end. It just happened that the show I was at was also Eric's birthday. We all sang HB to Eric and Steve bought out a Fender CS Strat to give to EJ as a present. He coaxed EJ into playing the next number with the new guitar, which Eric definitely did not want to do!

Joe
 
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cnote

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Yes, EJ told me he has had six bursts, and Buddy was the last one, the one he liked best for recording some songs, as mentioned in this thread. I didn't get the impression an LP - even a 1959 Burst- overall is one of his favorite guitars. I think he liked this one because it is such a clear sounding, lower output Burst that worked well with his effects. When he sold it to me, he told me he was selling stuff to fund work on a house or to buy a house - something like that. He's a really nice unpretentious guy. Lots of respect.
 

bulletproof

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Really cool story,brother and one beautiful guitar!
 

Paul.S

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Thanks for sharing. Great insight into a great guitar and awesome player.
 

Doc Holliday

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Thanks so much for posting very nice story about this instrument.Why did you end up selling it? and what did you replace it with?
 

cnote

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Ultimately, I moved it along through Rumble Seat. The tuners were replaced with vintage ones with intact buttons before the sale.
This was the ad pic that Rumble Seat had up - it sold quickly.



For me, there was some stress in owning and playing these types of instruments, and over time, I just decided to player more modern, less highly valued guitars.
Not that any do exactly what this guitar does. It is a special Les Paul.

Oh, and there is a Little Buddy. In 2010, I asked Gibson to save 9 0423 for me, and to make a 59 Reissue that is like Buddy. They did! Below is Buddy and Lil Buddy, both 9 0423.

 
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