What Is The 1959 Les Paul Sound?

lpfan1980

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Now if I had a burst Id make sure to make a video called Does this 250000 dollar guitar smash better than a $125 Glarry. :p :laugh2:.
 

OBX351

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I am not sure if this adds to the conversation but:
1) what is the sound - for me, listen to any LP recorded in the mid/late 60s and 70s and part of that sound is the plexi Marshall and pulsonic speakers.
2) playing a burst and I've played several, was like when I got in a Porsche Turbo on the track. Not too many people get to do it and when I did, it was a "wholly $hit", never forget moment. As stupid as this might sound, that's what it was.

Not all bursts are the top 1%'ers of the best sounding guitars. Some are busts. But the ones that aren't are magical.

Lastly, playing a burst has killed me for guitars and I do not agree that most people can get a RI, play it through a reissue Marshall get 90% of the sound/tone of a burst. It's not close. It takes a TON of effort and $s to get to 90% of the sound/tone of a burst.
 

decoy205

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To me that reedy, vocal/vowelly hollow neck pickup thing is absolutely key to PAF Les Paul/Burst tone, and Peter Green is my personal pinnacle for that, with Mike Bloomfield close behind.

Here’s my ‘56/‘59 PAF conversion:

http://instagr.am/p/CKNAT5FAKvb/

I’m no expert but that’s what I hear as “burst” sound as well. That video sounds great and has whatever “it” is.
 

Fillmore

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I'm the guy that doesn't taste blue berries, licorice and Sage in a glass of wine. It's the same with hi-end guitars, I can't seem to tell them apart, but I do know what Dickey Betts sounds like.
 

Thomas/Sweden

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Such wonderful sustain in the laminated fretboard of my 2012 R9. I'm happy with that.
 

zdoggie

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I think that it is as broad asit is long and shallow as it is deep the pursuit of tone is endless I really dont have any really solid advise this is a type of addiction for a while everyone was hot on robben fords tone but he has a secret weapon
skill I believe he would sound the same with any gear he would choose ,I think that all of the accomplished players would be the same ,for instance I heard billy gibbon playing an acoustic dobro on a clip on you tube and it unmistakeably billy igot a huge enlightment at that point I say use quality equipment and practice ,just think of how many hours that billy duane dickey the skynyrd gang had guitars in their hands I see this as a reality check zdog
 

Phil W

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Les Pauls were ideally suited to stage performances of Rock music because they handle volume well without feedback. THAT'S why they were used 60s/70s on by major bands and that's why they are revered by association!
 

korus

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To me that reedy, vocal/vowelly hollow neck pickup thing is absolutely key to PAF Les Paul/Burst tone, and Peter Green is my personal pinnacle for that, with Mike Bloomfield close behind.

Here’s my ‘56/‘59 PAF conversion:

http://instagr.am/p/CKNAT5FAKvb/
Absolutely correct. Many demos of 'Bursts' deliberately AVOID and IGNORE neck pickup position. Neck position/pickup tone is an ultimate test - cause it reveals in first 5 seconds if the guitar does indeed have the original tone or not . By 'Bursts' I mean all of them - makeovers, conversions, replicas, 'near mint' originals, whichever the guitar pretends it has the original tone but it has not.

Bridge pickup demoed is easier to sound similar to original tone, esp with higher gain/drive levels - to all the ears who do not hear treble well enough and who simply cannot recognize it is fake, that it is not the original tone. They say - oh it is the same tone maybe a bit more 'aggressive' and I like it more aggressive. Which is completely missing the point of having the original LP tone, missing the essence of original tone. That is why these ears are perfectly content with Rx guitars and other versions of poorly faked original tone.

Here is the demo played with more gain/drive than in your clip. But Joey Landreth (just like Ian Bairnson) as a player understands the tone he has in hands,he knows what it is there for and this glorious and unavoidable flutey neck tone is there for all ears to hear, I mean - for all ears able to recognize it. And just like Ian - he uses it to make stellar guitar talk and sing - like we are listening to a human being, a human voice - and not some metal and wood vibrating inducing some tiny electric current.

Funny, that flutey/vowelly/hollow/honky (nasal?) ('haunting mids' anyone?) quality is present even in middle and bridge position. The Original tone ia all it's glory, but sadly - only for those able to hear it / recognize it. Others call it meh or muddy. Can't hear treble well enough - that's why. And they cannot know it.
 
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janalex

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Take into consideration Pretty much every burst reference tone mentioned on this thread had grovers. The tone is changed particularly the clarity that most are referring to (Bloomfield). Those recorded tones without grovers were in the minority.
 

dc007

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Listen to Duane and Dickey on At Fillmore East. Listen to Dickey on Wipe the Windows, Check the Oil, Dollar Gas.
download Gary Moore live at Montreux 2010! That's Classic Les Paul tone!
Eric Clapton playing in John Mayalls Bluesbrakers on the "Beano" album
or Mike Bloomfield playing anywhere!
if you want to know what a Les Paul should sound like you need to listen to Dickey Betts.
Common denominator is a cranked amp
 

Uncle Vinnie

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Keep the '59. Give me that '54 GT in the background!
 

Uncle Vinnie

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The pickups in Duane Allman's '59 burst were from his '57 GT.

At Duane's direction they were swapped between the deal being made and the guitars changing hands.
 

kakerlak

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I think I said somewhere that a good LP should sound like a piano in the neck, a cello in the middle and a telecaster in the bridge, lol.
 

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