The evolution of the late-‘60s Gibson Les Paul Custom – a near “exact duplicate of the original” that has become a holy grail for collectors

Gibson Les Paul Custom
(Image credit: Future / Joseph Branston)

Gibson’s debut solidbody electric guitar line was introduced in 1952 with the Les Paul model (dubbed the ‘Goldtop’ on account of its gold finish). 

The range was expanded in 1954 with the Les Paul TV and Junior student guitars along with the price-list-topping, Ebony-finished Les Paul Custom. The mid-priced Les Paul Special was added the following year. 

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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.