Friday, January 27, 2012
Perhaps Gibson’s most unexpected release at NAMM 2012 is the new Les Paul Junior Special with; yes that’s right, B-Bender. Turning a guitar infamous for its rock ‘n’ roll contributions and making it a little bit country, we can safely say we didn’t see this coming! However it could prove a quite promising concept and has already got people talking about it.
The junior has been played by names such as John Lennon, Johnny Thunders and Bob Marley so judging by its impressive credentials there is no compromise in sound for its size. The new Les Paul Special has a second pickup but keeps its pared-back ethic. So clearly adding a B-Bender was a bold and surprising move; and to those of you unsure of what it is, basically it is a device, usually a spring-loaded strap-button, that is used to bend the ‘B’ string via a lever mechanism within the guitar. Therefore when the guitar is angle towards the floor the button moves and bends the guitar to a full semitone. The effect is very similar to a lap-steel hence its popularity with country music. This feature can also be change to the ‘G’ string so a fair bit of experimentation can be done with this guitar.
The thing I like about the Gibson Les Paul Junior Special is it takes two aspects from very different styles of music and combines them in one instrument. With its versatile p90 pickups it can be used for both genres of music and it is capable of really unique things and will appeal to fans of both types. The guitar is expected to be on sale in summer 2012 so if you’re interested check out this site for more information or sign up to the newsletter and be kept posted.