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Gibson Melody Maker Electric Guitar   

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Introduced in 1959 and priced for the beginning player, the Gibson Melody Maker Electric Guitar features a Mahogany body with a lightweight '60s-styl...Click To Read More About This Product

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A lean and mean rockin' machine.

Introduced in 1959 and priced for the beginning player, the Gibson Melody Maker Electric Guitar features a Mahogany body with a lightweight '60s-style slim-tapered neck and rosewood fingerboard with dot inlays. The single dog-ear P-90 pickup emits classic vintage growl perfect for everything from roots to punk to blues. The Melody Maker has a Tune-o-matic bridge and chrome hardware.

  • Body: Mahogany
  • Neck: Mahogany
  • Profile: 1960 Slim-tapered
  • Peghead Pitch: 17 degrees
  • Thickness at 1st fret: 0.820"
  • Thickness at 12th fret: 0.900"
  • Heel Length: 0.500"
  • Neck Joint Location: 16th fret
  • Fretboard: Rosewood
  • Scale length: 24-3/4"
  • Total Length: 18.062"
  • Nut Width: 1-11/16"
  • Width at 12th fret: 2.062"
  • Frets: 22
  • Inlays: Pearloid dot
  • Plating Finish: Chrome
  • Bridge: Tune-o-matic
  • Tailpiece: Stopbar
  • Knobs: Black Top Hat
  • Tuners: White Button
  • Bridge Pickup: Single vintage P-90
  • Controls: One volume, One tone
  • CASE
  • Exterior: Black Gig bag
  • Interior: Black Padded
  • Silkscreen: White 'Gibson USA' logo

Review Snapshot

by PowerReviews

(based on 52 reviews)

Ratings Distribution

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  • 1 Stars



Most Liked Positive Review


Lovely Melody Maker!

Gibson has issued Melody Makers since '50s eraand it always has been very affordable goodquality, well-made nice-toned simple prettyGibson for the beginners. This newest versionof Melody Maker came out a few years ago...Read complete review

Gibson has issued Melody Makers since '50s eraand it always has been very affordable goodquality, well-made nice-toned simple prettyGibson for the beginners. This newest versionof Melody Maker came out a few years ago andI consider of it as the one of very good Gibsons available now. If you take a look at any Melody Makers from any era, you'llunderstand that it's just made to be so simple. Simple and made with Gibson's lowerquality wood, that's why it was possible to be so affordable. It isn't fancy like otherGibsons but made by the same craftmanship ofGibson. People might think of this guitar not so good because they compare this guitar with Les Paul Standard or something else.Those people are wrong, Melody Maker and these other Gibsons are made for differentpurpose. It's like compering Cadillac andFord Escort, the both are very good carsmade by Americans but with different cost,price, and purpose. People look up so muchif it's a custom shop Les Paul or something saying those guitars are superb and look down so much if it's a regular Les Paul Jror a Melody Maker, those people are damn right! Excuse me! The Custom shop ones cost at least a few thousands of dollars when those regular Jr and Melody are around $500 bucks! I am a guitar collector and a player and I have so many guitars at home which people cant believe my collectionincludes from Vintage to New, 1959 Les Paul Std's to this new Melody Maker and Fender HWY-1 Strat.I have and play so many guitars in my life and I think I know somehow better about guitars than those people who laugh on Melody Maker. So take my advise before you take theiradvise for bad impression. I only tell the truth about it.New Melody Maker is well- constructed and uses all good hardwares. It has a good-sounding genuine P-90 pickup and Shaller-made Nashvill tune o' matic bridge and a stopbartailpiece. Good Gotoh-made tunersand other small regular Gibson hardwares.The price is about fare and it comes insatin lacquer finish which is cool andactually better resonant than say,,, the polyester finish. It comes with a Gibsongig bag and in three colors. Black,Red,Yellow. Gibson uses genuinemahogany for the body and rosewood for a fingerboard, but sadly here they use othercheap available wood for the neck ratherthan mohogany. This is the only complainI have for Melody Maker, it's not that muchbig deal for Gibson to use a little piece of mahogany for the neck since all the past historical Melodies had them. Gibson shouldnot be cheap for this kind of small matter. Melody Maker is just good affordablelovely small Gibson. It is good for Punk,Rock'n Roll, Blues, and your kid's firstguitar. It's well-made, still all made inUSA by American people. So pick one up, andsee it without a prejudice. You will see then that something warm and good and coolis in your hands. Thank you very much and behappy with your Melody!


Most Liked Negative Review


Don't waste your money!

I'm sorry but I'm just distgusted at Gibson's feeble attempt to creat an affordable Gibson Les Paul. Now I'm not a Gibson hater, I can just tell this is completely and utterly lame....Read complete review

I'm sorry but I'm just distgusted at Gibson's feeble attempt to creat an affordable Gibson Les Paul. Now I'm not a Gibson hater, I can just tell this is completely and utterly lame. What annoys me most of all is there isn't anything special about this guitar for example it has a plain finish, basic woods and plain stylings. I also feel one P-90 pickup can't give any player the versitility a Gibson usually gives. Now I haven't played one yet so I can't give an accuarate judgement on the sound or playability. In my opinion, dont just buy this because it's a Gibson! Save your money and buy a better one or get a nice Epiphone!

Reviewed by 52 customers

Displaying reviews 1-10

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More than a one trick pony ...

By Fret Tech

from NJ

See all my reviews

This is as simple and effective an electric guitar that can be had - there are no more or less "features" needed, it is what is and it struts it's stuff very well indeed (at least for me). Good materials and build, silky smooth tuners with vintage small button vibe, Tusq nut that's cut right on, TOM bridge for easy intonation (unlike the limited tweakability of the LP Jr's wraparound bridge), nice neck shape that's not really all that thin, good fret work, screamingly delicious P90, quality pots and jack. I dunno what wood they're using (mahogany, cedar, whatever) but this guitar is Extremely resonant, with struck notes lingering far longer than normal - and it's a FIVE piece, 1-3/8" thick body. I can race the single P90 for *Screaming* beat-yer-head-in rock/thrash/metal tones without icepick in the ear screetch, or throttle back for thick slightly overdriven blues, and pull further back still for clean jazz and ragtime fingerstyle. Only one bridge pup. Really. The key is in the P90 and the body - combined, they've got The Tone. As soon as I got the MM, I restrung with 11's, adjusted the truss rod and bridge/saddles, set the action and intonation, tunes up, plugged straight into a small boutique Champ clone w/12" speaker and got lost in the playing for an hour. I dunno that it's really worth it in comparison to similar Pac Rim offerings, but this guitar just exudes good vibrations in every sense of the word. Glad I got it. You probably would be, too.


Gibson's best kept secret.....

By Mauvehead

from Danville, IL

See all my reviews

I just bought one of these and absolutely love it. The neck is wonderful (60's slim taper style) and wicked fast. The tone is excellent as is, partly due to the great sounding Gibson P-90 and the wood tones. And my favorite part about this guitar is the feel of the aged paint job and the overall "vibe-y-ness" of it all. I own several guitars (including a Gibson Les Paul Classic) and this one ranks as one of the funnest to play with one of my favorite tones for lead playing and rowdy rhythm. I can't believe Gibson doesn't charge more for these guitars. Wow!


keep it simple

By M-Dub

from Pittsburgh

See all my reviews

Get some grover tuners and new strings to upgrade it.. Then Id recomend it for anyone and all syles of music. The one pickup is all you need and it has an awesome tone. So get it cause is worth it.


Zen guitar!

By Iggy Wikkid

from Texas

Well, let's face facts: It's ugly as sin with its unfilled wood grain and thin sprayed-on paint, its tiny little headstock and skinny white button tuners. The input jack is mounted on the face of the guitar so they could only cut one route in the back for the jack, vol, and tone pots, and it's got one black plastic dog-ear P-90 at the bridge. If this thing was a puppy at the dog pound, nobody would adopt it!HOWEVER, once you pick it up, something amazing happens. You realize that the tone knob can actually be used to - get this - change the tone! You realize that the volume knob can take it from crystal clear to low-down and nasty with a simple twist. You start to wonder why you need that neck pickup on all your other guitars. Or the trem bar, or the locking tuners, or eight pounds of wood around your neck, or that quilted maple birdseye flame ten-top that you're so scared of scratching. And after a few weeks, you think to yourself, "Hey, I sure haven't been playing those other guitars in the closet much," and you promise that you will ... tomorrow ... or the day after that ... really ... just as soon as I put this ugly little Gibson down ... no, seriously ... next week for sure ...Give it a month and you'll be hooked. I know I am.


Decent chunk o' wood.

By Yomama-AAT3V

from Cleveland

See all my reviews

This is a great little guitar for not a lot of money. In my opinion, just about everything is overpriced these days, but looked at objectively, it's really hard to find a decent american made guitar in this price range. Thanks to Gibson for making it happen. Tone is absolutely fantastic, playability is more than adequate for an instrument found in this price point. Mine had a bad nut straight out of the box, the high "e" slot was cut too deep, and the string fretted out all the way up the board. I filled the slot and re-cut it though, and aside from that, I haven't had a single problem with the guitar. I for one am a huge fan of single pick-up guitars. Magnets are magnets, and even if you don't have a guitar's neck pick-up turned on, it is still exerting string pull. With nothing but a bridge pick-up, you get overtones, harmonics, and sustain, that are much more musical, and string to string definition that is much more articulate. In my opinion, a single P-90 guitar exibits the quintessential bridge pick-up tone, and this guitar excels at it. As far as tonal differentiation, experimenting with your picking technique and the tone control can unveil myriad tonal possibilities. One cool axe for stage or studio, and with a beginner guitar price tag to boot. Getcha one.


Great for what it is

By The weather is nice

from Chattanooga, TN

See all my reviews

Ok, so here's the deal. It's Les Paul. Period. The feel (minus the weight) is all there. Its a great sounding guitar with tone galore. Hook it up to a Fender Pro Jr or other simple tube amp and you're set. For the guy who gave this guitar crap ratings by saying, " I'd suggest getting something like a PRS instead-more pickups and better action. but a decent guitar I suppose", I suggest you compare a Les Paul custom shop to that PRS. I mean, a $600 LP vs a $3,000 PRS. What are you thinking!


An LP for the non-LP player

By toneman1-WMwWX

from Florence MA

See all my reviews

I bought this gouitar to round out my performance rig (which now consists of a Telecaster w/Fishman piezos in the saddles, a Tex-Mex Strat, an Ibanez Artcore w/TV Jones replacement pickups, and the LP Melody Maker). I tend to use it quite a bit during the night, because my band is a power-pop trio backing a lead singer,and the P90 is big-sounding enough to create real fullness, but this may not be the guitar for a "one-guitar" player. That said, it feels like late 50's-early 60's Gibsons, and looks oh so rock-and-roll! (You do need to buy a Les Paul Jr pickguard, though, or it just looks goofy.) I can't think of another guitar available that gives you this much quality and variability for so little money. A great addition to a multi-guitar rig!


I love it.

By mrfries

from WI

I bought this guitar about six months ago with some money that I got from selling my grandfather's nazi medals that he traded cigarettes for while he was in germany after world war 2. I'm only in high school so I really cannot afford to buy nice guitars, but then again I dont really need very nice guitars to play good old punk rock. But about the guitar, I love it, the red color is so frickin awesome, and after you play it a few hours a day for six months straight the neck gets really really fast, I can play this guitar so well and smoothly now, it is amazing. I only wish it had another pickup, but whatever, I can chop a hole in it and screw in a new one, no big deal. but yeah, buy this guitar if you cant spend 1000 dollars on a guitar.


Melody Maker

By APublicOutcry212

from Elmora, PA

I have this guitar. It is very smooth and ultra-light. It has sweet action and even better tone. Enough fuzz to make you never want any other guitar. Perfect for screamo music or new metal.


Very unique, great guitar

By Mojohand41

from Va

I've had mine for about 8 months. I consider it one of the best guitars I've ever owned. It looks a little cheap, almost like something you would make in highschool shop class. The finish on the body looks like rustoleum..but..plug it in, start to play and the thing just oozes mojo. For reference, I've been playing for over twenty five years, my other main guitar is a American made 1952 reissue Fender Telecaster. Anyway, the finish seems to be a turn off for some folks, but after playing it a lot, the neck smooths out real nice. I honestly beleive this thing will age really well. The hardware is fine, the vintage tuners aren't the best money an buy, but they do work. The fretwork and neck is nice.I love the sound of the p90. Believe it or not, just this single pup and tone knob create a lot of variation in sound. I'm leaving this thing completly stock as it's too good to risk screwing with.When it comes to "twang" and "snap" and "ice pick" kind of playing, this guitar will out telecaster a telecaster, only with more sustain. Fingerpicked, raunchy blues (i.e. Lightning Hopkins) stuff shines on this baby as does rockabilly style leads. In some respects, not exactly the most versatile, do everything guitar out there (it won't replace my Tele), but it has a unique enough vibe and sound that makes it a keeper. I currently have narrowed my electrics down to to four, and even after nearly a year of owning it, the Melody Maker still seems to get playe the most. Try one before you buy though, as I think this will be a real "love it or hate it" kind of guitar.

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