The rise of the Gibson Les Paul/SG Standard

Gibson Les Paul/SG
(Image credit: Future / Joby Sessions)

Gibson’s debut solidbody electric guitar line got off to a great start following the release of the Les Paul Model/Goldtop in 1952. By 1957, however, Les Paul sales had tailed off significantly. 

Facing stiff competition from Fender, company president Ted McCarty and his design team doubled down on their efforts to come up with exciting, innovative products. Diving deep for new ideas, Gibson surfaced with a plethora of now iconic designs in 1958. 

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Rod Brakes

Rod Brakes is a music journalist with an expertise in guitars. Having spent many years at the coalface as a guitar dealer and tech, Rod's more recent work as a writer covering artists, industry pros and gear includes contributions for leading publications and websites such as Guitarist, Total Guitar, Guitar WorldGuitar Player and MusicRadar in addition to specialist music books, blogs and social media. He is also a lifelong musician.