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Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar

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A visual and sonic Les Paul powerhouse.Gibson has always been known for the quality of their craftsmanship, and the Custom Shop '57 Custom Les Paul B...Click To Read More About This Product

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OVERVIEW

The choice of many star performers.

A visual and sonic Les Paul powerhouse.Gibson has always been known for the quality of their craftsmanship, and the Custom Shop '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty embodies that tradition through and through. Originally introduced in 1957, the Les Paul Custom Black Beauty featured Gibson' then-new humbucker pickups that revolutionized the sound of electric guitars. This Custom Shop masterpiece is loaded with three BurstBucker pickups for greater tonal variety than the traditional dual-humbucker setup. Also features the classic Les Paul carved mahogany top and solid mahogany body, one-piece set mahogany neck with 22-fret ebony fingerboard, ABR-1 Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece, and binding on the body, neck and headstock. Using only the finest materials and electrical components, Gibson's highly skilled Custom Shop luthiers create guitars that rise to the level of fine art, for players and collectors with an appreciation for unsurpassed craftsmanship and unequalled tone. NOTE: optional gold Bigsby tailpiece may vary with Bigsby script over gold background or over black background. Use the drop-down menu above to choose your options.

FEATURES
  • 3 BurstBuckers
  • Carved mahogany top and solid mahogany body
  • One-piece mahogany neck
  • 22-fret ebony fretboard
  • ABR-1 Tune-O-Matic bridge with stopbar tailpiece (optional Bigsby tremolo)
  • Body, neck, and headstock binding
  • Long neck tenon
  • Gold hardware
  • Classic ebony finish
  • Includes hardshell case, and certificate of authenticity
SPECIFICATIONS
  • Top wood: Carved mahogany
  • Back wood: Solid mahogany
  • Binding: Multi-ply white/black on top and back
  • Neck construction: 1-piece mahogany
  • Fingerboard wood: 22 fret ebony
  • Inlays: Pearl block
  • Binding: Single-ply white
  • Profile: Rounded
  • Scale length/Nut width: 24-3/4"; 1-11/16"
  • Pickups: BurstBucker 1 (rhythm) and 2 (treble); BurstBucker 1 in middle position on 3 pickup configuration
  • Other: CTS pots and bumblebee caps
  • Controls: 2 volume, 2 tone, 3-way switch
  • Hardware color: Gold
  • Bridge/Tailpiece: ABR-1/Bigsby tremolo or aluminum stopbar
  • Other: Thin, original-style toggle switch washer and jackplate
  • Tuner style: Kluson vintage tulip tuners
  • Strings: Brite Wires .010-.046
Reviews
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Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews
Gibson Custom'57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar
 
5.0

(based on 31 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

  • 5 Stars

     

    (30)

  • 4 Stars

     

    (1)

  • 3 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 2 Stars

     

    (0)

  • 1 Stars

     

    (0)

Reviewed by 31 customers

Displaying reviews 1-20

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(5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

It's my Holy Grail

By MetalheadEd

from In my house

See all my reviews

Ask me a question

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

Ive been playing this guitar for a year, so I think that my opinion has leveled out a bit. Everyone else is correct when they say that the different tones are great. Im not crazy about the burstbukers in mine but besides their extreme brightness, they articulate well. The third pickup just make this thing sound awesome. The neck is fatter than the newer spec models, but I have to admit, I get a growl out of this thing that is unbelievable. I plugged it into my 74 Marshall Lead and its like playing a hammer strong, thick punches of sound. My 87 Les Paul Standard with Bare Knuckle pickups doesnt growl like this thing. It weighs a ton so get a thick strap. I thought the low, flat frets would bother me, but I actually like them. They almost compensate the fat neck for ease-of-playing. I really like it for playing blues and classic rock. I wanted to make it my number one, but everyone said that its not good for metal or heavy stuff. I put a SD pickup booster on the front of my chain and ran it through a Mesa Dual Rec. and it sounds metal. Im still on the fence about making her my No. 1, but she does sound good. I have zero complaints about the quality, but I didnt go for the bigsby. Its strong, well built, and beautiful.
This isn't action packed with features, but what's there is good. The three pickups allow for a nice combo of tones, but one can argue that a five way switch would provide more tonal opportunities.
No quality issues. I didn't get the bigsby, but this thing seems to be built like a tank. I haven't had to make any big adjustments, it stays in tune and it plays great
It's a Gibson, so it's expensive. In terms of value, consider this: It's a production guitar with a custom shop price.

(5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Review

By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I was lucky enough to buy one used for 3 g's when it still cost 3700 new instead of the crazy 4800 they are now, without the Bigsby. It's my dream guitar though...great fat, smooth tones for clean, and warm, crunchy tones when played through an overdriven amp. The "fretless wonder" low profile frets and 24 3/4 inch scale make playing easy, and the ebony 'board provides a nice feel. Great instrument, and investment. However, I don't think Gibson should have raised the price so high.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
4.0

A must-have for studio guitarists

By FartTickled

from Dallas, TX

About Me Professional Musician

Pros

  • Extremely Versatile
  • Fullest Sounding Les Paul
  • Good Pick Up
  • Good Tone
  • Most Beautiful Guitar
  • Retains Value Very Well
  • Solid Electronics

Cons

  • Bigsby Not Ideal
  • Expensive Luxury
  • Extremely Heavy
  • Gold Hardware Fades Quick
  • Middle Pu Can Get In Way
  • Overly-thick Neck

Best Uses

  • Jamming
  • Practicing
  • Recording
  • Rock Concerts
  • Small Venues

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

Let me start by saying that this guitar is not for everybody. I think some of the glamour this guitar gets is because people write reviews before they play it for hours, gig, record, rehearse, jam, etc. over a number of years. It is also possible that someone who just laid $5000 on a guitar is likely to give a glowing recommendation so they don't feel shortchanged. Don't get me wrong. This is a fantastic guitar, but it doesn't cater to everyone. I have owned this guitar for about 10 years and I know the ins and outs of this thing. You will not play this standing up for extended periods of time. It is heavy, and I am fairly young. Chances are you are over 40 if you are interested in this thing, so you probably won't be able to gig with this without a lighter backup guitar. It also has a very thick neck: which is great if you are sitting down or playing slow, but can be a burden if you are playing for extended periods of time. Middle Pickup does take some getting used to if you play rhythm. I went the bigsby route and again, not for everyone. It is a hassle to restring this thing and has tuning problems if I don't use a thicker gauge of strings. The gold hardware fades fairly quickly but that doesn't bother me too much. This is just my opinion, but I feel like I have to single this guitar out over my others. I am not the type to ever let a guitar sit in its case or behind glass, but it is a historical reissue, very expensive, and can potentially be worth 10 times what I paid for it in 50 years if I take care of it. So when I gig with it I have to take extra precautions to make sure it stays in perfect condition. I can bang a strat up any day but I feel like I have to baby this thing to preserve its virtue. Now if you can see past most of that then this may be the guitar for you. It is extremely versatile, and you can't really pin a specific style that it is made for because it does them all very well. With a good set of flat wounds, you would think this thing was born to play jazz as well as a gibson super 400. The good thing is that most jazz players are sitting down, so you don't have to worry about its weight. This is almost mil-spec to the les paul jimmy paige played so you know it can play rock. Blues is a no-brainer and it does surprisingly well in country. It also handles most modern effects very well. The only styles I wouldn't recommend are most types of metal. This is a must-have for all studio guitarists.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Amazing Guitar

By gibbofan

from Trenton, IL

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

This is an absolutely amazing guitar. Quality and featues are just great, so many tones can be achieve with this instrument, from Blues, Rock, Country and Alternative. The cleanest tones I've heard and endless sustain, going to crunch and dirty tones it just takes a bite out of you. A definitely must have to every serious guitar player. You can't go wrong with this guitar.

(3 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

The Best Money Can Buy!

By gibsonguy91-TEIFh

from St. Louis, MO

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I have always loved playing Gibson guitars. I also love the Les Paul. This guitar is the king of all the Pauls. It has a warm low end paired with a brilliant shimmering treble. The look of the guitar is stunning. It is something that will last through the ages!

(3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

GREATGUITAR, AWESOMETONES

By LPguy-JQl7w

from Ca

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I've seen a guy play an original '59 Black Beauty with 3 PU's, and the sounds are awesome, good for jazz, blues, rock, alternatives. Haighly recommend this one from quality to sweet tones, must have for a guitar lovers.

(3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

The ultimate Les Paul

By racewiththedeviloncoastalhighway

from Monterey Bay, CA

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

This guitar is just phenomenal! I've played it at a local guitar shop and just fell in love with it till I saw the price. The neck is pretty slick and the frets are great IMO. The 3 pickups really gives the guitar character and the bibsy worked really well. Of course, this is NOT a metal guitar (unless of course you do some mods) but in probably every other genre of music, this will not let you down.The price is a tad high and is NOT recommended for beginners. It is tempting to buy it straight away but make sure you look at EVERYTHING ELSE before making a huge decision like this one.Used: Marshall JVM410 amp, no effect pedals, straight to guitar. Played on clean, dirty, and everything else you can think of setting on amp.

(3 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Um....Pretty Good

By DeanFREAK107

from Haleyville, Alabama

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I have played this guitar once, and personally, I love the sound of it. I wouldn't really recommend it if you play metal (slipknot, mudvayne, devil driver, etc.) but for ANY other type, this guitar is perfect! It has a slick neck for fast playing and "not too big of frets" for jazz-type chords. I would recommend this guitar if you play jazz, rock, emo, blues, etc. I hope this helps with your decision making in choosing a guitar. PEACE!

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Incredible guitar.

By zildjian player

from australia

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I worked for so long for this guitar. It was all worth it too. The bigsby hardware is wonderful. The quality is perfect, the only thing it is expensive. But I love this guitar.

(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A Guitar Lover's Dream

By MJCBass21@Hotmail.com

from Rockford, IL

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

2/1/05The '57 Gibson Les Paul Custom Black Beauty (w/Gold Bigsby Hardware) is the most magnificent guitar a player could ever acquire. Any arsenal is crowned with this musical masterpiece. Fine art meets music. It?s the guitarist?s version of the classical violinist and his Stradivarius. This guitar turns heads everywhere, every time, even before a note is played or a chord is struck. It's solid body sings that it is THE Heavyweight Guitar of the World. It is capable of soft, soothing clear sounds of a fine concert acoustic. With a change in attack, volume, setting, or stomp, it is a blazing rock guitar that Pete, Keith, Jimmy, Jimmy and all great players would be proud of. Have you seen the great photo of the late Jimmy playing one? It plays itself and takes one off on a musical journey guided by mortal hands. I wonder if Jimmy would agree. It is sheer beauty. Everyone stops and stares. Young children approach and those in their sunset years take notice coolly from afar. All notice that the Gibson Les Paul Custom Black Beauty is magnificent. I love playing it and know how fortunate I am. It will be passed down, honored, and played through the generations, as a musical masterpiece should be.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Truely a Beauty

By greater vison

from western New York

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I've been playing guitar for 30 years, and this guitar is the finest I've ever owned. Just to let you know I'm comparing it to an Eric Clapton Strat, a Telecaster Elite, and a 1980's Les Paul Custom. This is the best sounding and playable

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Sound Like No Other

By ZipRocks

from St. Louis, MO

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I've owned several guitars, but never a Gibson Les Paul. A guitar that was always beyond my budget, but when I finally was able to afford one, I decided to go all the way and get the Holy Grail of Gibsons - the 3 pickup, gold hardware, 1957 Black Beauty. I've played many guitars through my Marshall amp: Fender, Ibanez, Washburn, etc. and when I plugged the Black Beauty in, it was instantly a match made in heaven. And that was just the clean channel. Smoky mellow low end or bright, clear high end - it masters the WHOLE tonal range. This guitar can create almost any sound you want. Switching to Channel B on my Marshall, I put the volume on "8" and I struck a smooth stroke of an E chord and let it ride. My clothes were vibrating from the bone crunching (but yet yet totally smooth) distortion that only a quality Les Paul can produce. Like that quote in Spinal Tap, the sustain is so perfect, you can "You could go and have a bite an'...aaaaaaaaa...you'd still be hearin' that one." Versatile and absolutely BEAUTIFUL. An instrument or artwork? Both! It hangs on the wall in my office because it is simply too breathtaking to store away in a case.

(1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Super great buy for the advanced musician.

By the_rock137

from Pikeville, KY

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

If you are into the classic rock sounds heard on any 1970's or 1980's rock or southern rock album then this is a must-have item. The rhythm switch allows for very bass-like tones, which are great for playing distorted riffs and bring out the beauty of chorus effects. The middle switch gives a half-bass half-treble tone which is great for any musical mountain that you must climb. The treble switch allows for screaming lead tones (my personal favorite to use). With the triple humbucker setup, you really don't even need your right hand. Hammer-ons and pull-offs are as easy as Em7! I highly suggest the Gibson Black Beauty to anyone, the collector or the active musician.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Would be suprising from anyone BUT Gibson

By TheDeeJ11

from Oakland, CA

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

This guitar blows any competition out of the water. When I first saw it played, I absolutely fell in love with it, the tone, the beauty! Has a completely different tone for each pickup, and using the treble-cutting tone knobs, you can get the thick, dark, and fat Les Paul sound from the neck pup, to a bright, warm, and elegant SG sound from the neck pup. There's also a thinner, twangier stratty-tele sound from the middle pup with some tweaking and eq'ing. The finish is mirror smooth, and just as shiny, and the gold hardware is an awesome finishing touch to the most elegant and sonically dynamic Les Paul ever. They simply don't come any better, and if you're thinking about forking over twice as much for a signature guitar, think about this; Jimmy Page, Zakk Wylde, Peter Frampton all chose Les Pauls and made them their own, they didn't buy a signature series, they bought a stock Les Paul, and I can say, I'm as satisfied as they are.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

Amazing Guitar

By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I just bought this guitar about two weeks ago and it is the most amazing sounding guitar i have ever heard. It looks amazing as well. I first thought the price was a little steep, but i now realize that it was worth every penny i payed for it.

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

An amazing guitar

By Anonymous

from Undisclosed

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

I love this guitar.Screams when distorted, but very surprised at it's clean sound.Humbucking pickups aren't generally known for having a nice clean sound. However, this guitar sounds like it says it does in the copy.It is sparkling and resonant. Workmanship is flawless; Gibson did a great job.A very pricey guitar . Plus the guitar comes new from the factory with none of the scratches, smudges or dust you usually find on off the rack instruments.If you have the money, get one. If you don't, charge it and get one anyway!

(1 of 1 customers found this review helpful)

 
5.0

A master piece

By greater vison

from western New York

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

Wow what a guitar, this thing plays like a dream and the workmanship is flawless. Yes it's expensive but it will hold it's value. It has a great sound also, the three pickup model can get three different sounds which is unusual for a Les Paul. Go ahead, buy it.

 
5.0

one of the best

By Bill D

from Ashton, IL

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

This guitar compares directly to my original 59 Custom with a Bigsby. I did not get the Bigsby on this one and can hear the difference in the sustain. I have had a Les Paul since 1952, having owned a 52 (supposedly one of the first 50 made), my 59 Custom and an 82 Standard. This one is right up there with the 59. Wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to anyone who wants to own a very fine guitar.

 
5.0

the perfect guitar

By thalia

from montreal, canada

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

Simply the best sounding and most beautiful guitar I have ever had the pleasure of playing. It put me in debt to get it but it's worth every penny.

 
5.0

Gibson Les Paul Custom Black Beauty: AWESOME!!

By Part Time Musician: Full time guitar nut!

from Oshkosh, WI

See all my reviews

Comments about Gibson Custom '57 Custom Les Paul Black Beauty Electric Guitar:

This guitar is a beast. I've owned mine for about two years now. It's actually the second best sounding guitar in my collection of 14. My Gibson SG standard actually sounds better but not by much. The Black Beauty is absolutely stunning visually. It's very heavy so I don't play it for more than one set at a time. The SG is a workhorse and she's my pampered pet!

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