Les Paul Personal Guitars

1969 Gibson Les Paul Personal

Color: Walnut, Rating: 8.75, Sold (ID# 00087)
Call to Inquire: (818) 222-4113

The Earliest Les Paul Personal!

The earliest Les Paul Personal, one of only two guitars made in 1969, out of a total run of 370 guitars. This very rare guitar weighs 12.20 lbs. and has a nice, fat nut width of 1 11/16 inches and a standard Gibson scale length of 24 3/4 inches. Solid mahogany body with carved top and contoured back, mahogany neck, and bound ebony fretboard with 22 frets and inlaid pearl block position markers. Inlaid pearl "Gibson" headstock logo and pearl five-piece split-diamond inlay. "Les Paul Personal" on truss-rod cover. Individual Grover Roto-Matic tuners with half-moon metal buttons (this guitar has had the tuners replaced). Two oblong low-impedance humbucker pickups mounted at an angle with "Gibson" embossed on the plastic pickup covers. Black laminated plastic pickguard. Four controls (volume, bass, treble, decade) on lower treble bout. Phase slide switch and three-way tone selector on small panel on lower treble bout. Microphone volume control knob and one selector switch on upper bass bout. Black plastic knobs with white markings and metal tops. Microphone input jack on side of upper bass bout. Guitar input jack on side of lower treble bout. Tune-O-Matic bridge and separate stud tailpiece. All hardware gold-plated. The pots are dated 1969. This guitar is in excellent plus condition. Housed in the original Gibson black hardshell case with red plush lining (9.00).

"Most Les Paul low-impedance models have different body dimensions than other Les Paul models" (Gruhn's Guide to Vintage Guitars, p. 218). The Les Paul Person is 14 inches wide, 18 1/4 inches long, and 2 inches deep.

"In 1969 along came the first wave of Les Paul models with low-impedance pickups -- the Les Paul Professional, the Les Paul Personal, and the Les Paul Bass. The Personal was, as the name implied, in keeping with one of Paul's own modified Les Paul guitars, even copying the odd feature of a microphone socket on the top edge of the guitar. The Personal and Professional had a complex array of controls, and Gibson's instruction leaflet reinforced the impression that they were built with recording engineers rather than guitarists in mind. Familiar volume, bass, treble and pickup selector were augmented by an 11-position Decade control, 'to tune high frequencies', a three-position tone selector to create various in and out-of-circuit mixes, and a pickup phase in/out switch. The Personal also provided a volume control for that handy on-board microphone input. Both guitars required connection using the special cord (lead) supplied, which had a built-in transformer to boost the output from the low-impedance stacked-coil humbucking pickups up to a level suitable for use with normal high-impedance amplifiers. Predictably, with hindsight, the guitars were not a great success, and did not last long in the Gibson line" (Tony Bacon, 50 Years of the Gibson Les Paul, p. 60).

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