Gibson Custom Shop Mike Ness 1976 Les Paul Deluxe Aged Gold

AJK1

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Incredible...even if this release isn't for you (and NO one is forcing anybody to buy one) people have to crap on about price??? Y'all must be fun at museums.

Unbelievable.
Yep, the price is obscene
 

AJK1

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I'd buy a clean original for 1/2 the price but that's not what this about.

Gibson has found another way to increase profits per unit which is good for Gibson. This is what business is about.

If there are 100 people that appreciate Mr Ness enough to pony up. Good for Mike and good for Gibson.

Nothing to deride here. Mr Ness is happy. Gibson is happy and my guess is that 100 new owners will be happy too.

No reason to piss in their Cheerios. No one is holding a gun to your head forcing you to buy one.

If it raises the price of originals then that's good for those who own one now. The fact that the Signature is double the cost is a non starter.

I can buy many reissues that resemble a Clapton but without the signature provenance it's just a regular R model and priced appropriately.

These collectible runs have done well by their original owners in 10 years time.

It'll be interesting to see how these recent sigs fair in ten years.
Yep, in this modern world you are not allowed to criticise, condemn or complain or have a different opinion
 

fretout

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I like to think of this signature guitar as honoring an artist that made a difference in music, more so than trying to cop the tones of SD.

However, the price throws that notion right out the window…

…then through the neighbors window X 9.

But I think this will be interesting, and here’s why. Both Mike Ness’s Signature and Jerry Cantrell’s signature models don’t bring any “special” specs to the table. It’s not like there’s a focus on top carves, tenon length, or accurately wound PAFs like the Custom Shop Historic models, or any of the CC models.

Hell, Gibson doesn’t care if these new signature models are accurate at all! Jerry’s original Wino had a SHORT TENON, and SEYMOUR DUNCAN JB/59 pickups (later switched to MCPs), but Gibson made his signature Wino with a long tenon, and Gibson pickups. Cool features I prefer, but they are NOT what Jerry had in his guitar, and isn’t that the entire purpose of a signature model?

So take the new Mike Ness signature. Gibson went to the length of copying the sandwich body, and the 3 piece neck, but a Gibson once again substitutes out the pickups for some Gibson pickups that the artist did NOT have in the very guitar Gibson is copying!

So here’s my point. These latest signature models are NOT made for people that care about being accurate, or having the closest possible copy of what the artist plays. If this was the case, we would see no compromises in the exact specs.

What we see are super high, nigh preventative prices on guitars that could routinely be purchased on the used market. And the Gibson you bought used and swapped pickups into would be more accurately spec’d than what Gibson released…all while saving around $6K.

No, these signature guitars (and you can throw the Adam Jones guitars in this category as well) are made to cater to investors. Period. The investors may be fans, but these are made for the investment, with zero care given to musicians. Slap a famous artist’s name on a guitar, make it “limited edition”, make the guitar 95% accurate, and then overprice the living hell out of it…then watch as a mix of investors and collectors (and a few die hard fans) spend an unreasonable amount of money on each and every one…until they sell out.

Personally, I am a huge fan of all these artists. I’d list Jerry Cantrell and Adam Jones as major influences, and some of the main reasons why I play guitar in the first place. So they hold some special prominence with me personally. And while Mike Ness wasn’t as big of an influence, anytime I hear a Social Distortion song, I instantly remember my 90s youth, and listening to the Edge here in Phoenix while speeding down the desert highway!

When these guitars were first announced, I thought “cool! About time”! And when I started reading the specs, I said “that isn’t correct”.

Who else here saw the Adam Jones announcement and thought “I can buy a Norlin LP Custom for $3K, swap in a JB/Jazz (or maybe a Distortion) for $250, and I have a more accurate, vintage-correct copy of Adam’s guitar?

Who here read the Jerry Cantrell announcement and thought “I can buy a 90s LP Custom for $2,200 to $2,800, swap in another SD JB/59 pickup set for $250, maybe buy a fishman piezo for $100, and I’ll have Jerry’s exact set up”? And I’ll still have enough left over to copy the next a Gibson Signature model!

Did anyone else have the same thought?

Norlin era Gibsons don’t command prices like the 50s/60s Gibsons do. Instead of the signature models inspiring guitar players, they’ve caused every idiot selling a Les Paul to think that their LP they have for sale is worth $5K-$9K. And maybe that was Gibson’s plan all along. Why buy a $9K LP when we found buy a Custom Shop LP on the used market for $3,500? Gibson found a way to destroy the value buys in the market by selling Les Pauls with non-Historic specs (Nashville Bridge, Short Tenon, aftermarket electronics, non-flametops, ect.) at unreasonable, unjustified prices…

…and it seems like in the short term, it worked.

It was less than two years ago that you could buy a Les Paul made in the 70s/80s/90s/00s for around $2,500. I bought more than 12 Gibson LP Customs UNDER this number. Both Reissues and normal Customs. Both “vintage” and later made guitars.

If it wasn’t for the Limited availability of these models, I don’t think they would be as popular as they are. I personally do not see the value in these last few years of signature Les Pauls. From a player’s perspective, I can find Norlin and Henry era LPs in the used market for far less money…and they are authentic. From a fan’s perspective, these signature Les Pauls are not exactly like what _______ played.

So, while I think it’s cool some of my favorite guitarists are finally being honored by my favorite guitar brand, unfortunately, I don’t see the value in it.
 

greatmutah

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No I think @fretout got the business side well. Collectors and investors buy these up and Gibson and said artist profit. Which is good for them. He points that out.

But I agree with what he’s saying especially about the guitars being 95% there. As well as over inflating prices on the existing used market. I don’t think these instruments alone solely caused that huge price jump as Covid caused price increases as people were home and buying more gear than selling. So used gear availability is at a low compared to pre Covid. That definitely didn’t help prices either. And I can see how these sig guitars didn’t help either. Norlin era Silverbursts we’re always expensive but now they’ve jumped from $3K - $5K into people asking $7K - $9K for them because they’re the real deal the Adam Jones model is based off of. And hey people can ask whatever they want for their gear. The used gear market is a free market. But some of these reissues didn’t help the price increases.

And back to the point about the specs: I think that’s the one thing that boggled my mind about the Wino LP at the least. Jerry’s actual Wino has MCPs in it, not the 490R/498T combo. At the price they’re asking, would it really have been that much more expensive to call Wade at MCP and commission a run of 2nd Degree Black Belts and/or AFWAYUs to go with these? I’m sure Wade would have jumped at the chance to do pickups for these guitars. And I don’t dislike Gibson pickups at all but for the sake of completeness, why not just do the whole thing 100% instead of 95%?

All the same, I’m clearly not in the intended market for these and that’s ok. Kudos to those who are and I hope you enjoy your instruments.
 
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I like to think of this signature guitar as honoring an artist that made a difference in music, more so than trying to cop the tones of SD.

However, the price throws that notion right out the window…

…then through the neighbors window X 9.

But I think this will be interesting, and here’s why. Both Mike Ness’s Signature and Jerry Cantrell’s signature models don’t bring any “special” specs to the table. It’s not like there’s a focus on top carves, tenon length, or accurately wound PAFs like the Custom Shop Historic models, or any of the CC models.

Hell, Gibson doesn’t care if these new signature models are accurate at all! Jerry’s original Wino had a SHORT TENON, and SEYMOUR DUNCAN JB/59 pickups (later switched to MCPs), but Gibson made his signature Wino with a long tenon, and Gibson pickups. Cool features I prefer, but they are NOT what Jerry had in his guitar, and isn’t that the entire purpose of a signature model?

So take the new Mike Ness signature. Gibson went to the length of copying the sandwich body, and the 3 piece neck, but a Gibson once again substitutes out the pickups for some Gibson pickups that the artist did NOT have in the very guitar Gibson is copying!

So here’s my point. These latest signature models are NOT made for people that care about being accurate, or having the closest possible copy of what the artist plays. If this was the case, we would see no compromises in the exact specs.

What we see are super high, nigh preventative prices on guitars that could routinely be purchased on the used market. And the Gibson you bought used and swapped pickups into would be more accurately spec’d than what Gibson released…all while saving around $6K.

No, these signature guitars (and you can throw the Adam Jones guitars in this category as well) are made to cater to investors. Period. The investors may be fans, but these are made for the investment, with zero care given to musicians. Slap a famous artist’s name on a guitar, make it “limited edition”, make the guitar 95% accurate, and then overprice the living hell out of it…then watch as a mix of investors and collectors (and a few die hard fans) spend an unreasonable amount of money on each and every one…until they sell out.

Personally, I am a huge fan of all these artists. I’d list Jerry Cantrell and Adam Jones as major influences, and some of the main reasons why I play guitar in the first place. So they hold some special prominence with me personally. And while Mike Ness wasn’t as big of an influence, anytime I hear a Social Distortion song, I instantly remember my 90s youth, and listening to the Edge here in Phoenix while speeding down the desert highway!

When these guitars were first announced, I thought “cool! About time”! And when I started reading the specs, I said “that isn’t correct”.

Who else here saw the Adam Jones announcement and thought “I can buy a Norlin LP Custom for $3K, swap in a JB/Jazz (or maybe a Distortion) for $250, and I have a more accurate, vintage-correct copy of Adam’s guitar?

Who here read the Jerry Cantrell announcement and thought “I can buy a 90s LP Custom for $2,200 to $2,800, swap in another SD JB/59 pickup set for $250, maybe buy a fishman piezo for $100, and I’ll have Jerry’s exact set up”? And I’ll still have enough left over to copy the next a Gibson Signature model!

Did anyone else have the same thought?

Norlin era Gibsons don’t command prices like the 50s/60s Gibsons do. Instead of the signature models inspiring guitar players, they’ve caused every idiot selling a Les Paul to think that their LP they have for sale is worth $5K-$9K. And maybe that was Gibson’s plan all along. Why buy a $9K LP when we found buy a Custom Shop LP on the used market for $3,500? Gibson found a way to destroy the value buys in the market by selling Les Pauls with non-Historic specs (Nashville Bridge, Short Tenon, aftermarket electronics, non-flametops, ect.) at unreasonable, unjustified prices…

…and it seems like in the short term, it worked.

It was less than two years ago that you could buy a Les Paul made in the 70s/80s/90s/00s for around $2,500. I bought more than 12 Gibson LP Customs UNDER this number. Both Reissues and normal Customs. Both “vintage” and later made guitars.

If it wasn’t for the Limited availability of these models, I don’t think they would be as popular as they are. I personally do not see the value in these last few years of signature Les Pauls. From a player’s perspective, I can find Norlin and Henry era LPs in the used market for far less money…and they are authentic. From a fan’s perspective, these signature Les Pauls are not exactly like what _______ played.

So, while I think it’s cool some of my favorite guitarists are finally being honored by my favorite guitar brand, unfortunately, I don’t see the value in it.
I've got 3 questions for you..

1) why do you assume that a "partnership" deal isn't the foundation for a signature guitar release? As opposed to a signature release acting in some way or form as a recognition of the musician? I get that there's a romanticism behind the idea, but sometimes a "collaboration" can just be that.

2) With the other options for the Deluxe model (for example) available for ANYONE to choose (New stock, assorted vintage) why is creating a reproduction of an artist's main instrument with a certain asking price not a value? IF someone appreciates a particular artist and wishes to own something "akin" to what tones they produce, who are we to say that "they missed the market" or "I don't see any value in it". I understand your point about current Norlin era values, but the Ness release (and for that matter the Gibson signature releases) this particular range of "Artist Guitars" are modern day reproductions.

3) With all the options I mentioned earlier that are avail to any buyer, why can't a company produce a limited edition item that may have interests from a collector's perspective? Esp. when all three options (signature, stock, vintage) all exist at the same time? A buyer has three options to choose from that suit their budget...not just one.
 

BadMongo

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When these guitars were first announced, I thought “cool! About time”! And when I started reading the specs, I said “that isn’t correct”.

Who else here saw the Adam Jones announcement and thought “I can buy a Norlin LP Custom for $3K, swap in a JB/Jazz (or maybe a Distortion) for $250, and I have a more accurate, vintage-correct copy of Adam’s guitar?

Who here read the Jerry Cantrell announcement and thought “I can buy a 90s LP Custom for $2,200 to $2,800, swap in another SD JB/59 pickup set for $250, maybe buy a fishman piezo for $100, and I’ll have Jerry’s exact set up”? And I’ll still have enough left over to copy the next a Gibson Signature model!

Did anyone else have the same thought?
My thoughts exactly. Why pay $9k for a new copy of something that can be had authentically in good condition for less?
Also I guess I'm old school but I sure mostly associate Jerry Cantrell with the blue dress guitar.
 

Malchik

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I'm going to call up my dealer and see if Gibson will make one of these for me NOS without all the Mike Ness affiliations. I'd like to see a Deluxe reissue that is not another R6 rebranding.
 

Radbloke McShreddington

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When you are targeting "punks" , even us aging and better off ones, with a $9k collector's item, you can eat a dick.
I don't think I'd be going out on a limb to say that a $9k signature guitar is about as punk rock as the time Dexter Holland bought a jet. For that amount I could buy an SG Special and about 8,000 cans of Rolling Rock.
 

BadMongo

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I don't think I'd be going out on a limb to say that a $9k signature guitar is about as punk rock as the time Dexter Holland bought a jet. For that amount I could buy an SG Special and about 8,000 cans of Rolling Rock.
I mean sure but hasn't Mike Ness had helpers on stage come take his jacket off for him for like... decades now? Seems pretty on brand. :laugh2:
 

greatmutah

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I don't think I'd be going out on a limb to say that a $9k signature guitar is about as punk rock as the time Dexter Holland bought a jet. For that amount I could buy an SG Special and about 8,000 cans of Rolling Rock.

Man, I ain’t had rolling rock in a LONG time. I need to fix that. That was a go to beer for me for a while. Rolling Rock and Motor City Ghetto Blaster were my jams.
 

Malchik

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Our favorite guitar flipper Trogly did a complete teardown of a Mike Ness reissue. Really nice specs. They did rout the body for P-90's only without modification, however.
 

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