“The power is in your hands”: You don’t have to be a muscle-bound ’80s action hero to wield Jared James Nichols’ new signature Blues Power Les Paul Custom, but we imagine it helps

Epiphone Jared James Nichols Blues Power Les Paul Custom
(Image credit: Epiphone)

Following an early teaser way back in March, which frankly feels like a lifetime ago, Jared James Nichols has finally lifted the lid on his third Epiphone signature guitar, the Blues Power Les Paul Custom.

The latest iteration is based on the same central construction of its predecessors – Old Glory and Gold Glory – occupying the unique space between a Les Paul Custom and Les Paul Junior.

As such, you get a 1955-style Les Paul mahogany body with seven-ply binding. That’s paired with a ’50s profile neck with an ebony fingerboard, plus custom-style pearloid block fret markers and split-diamond headstock inlay.

The LP Junior juju comes courtesy of the single-pickup setup, which for the first time features Nichols’ own signature design, the Seymour Duncan Silencer JJN P-90B – an upgrade from the regular Seymour Duncan P-90 of his previous models.

Nichols rolled that unit out in August, with the manufacturer promising “all the tone of the classic P-90 pickup without the hum”.

On the control front, you get volume and tone (both using CTS pots), albeit in an offset Les Paul Standard-style position – as opposed to the two-in-a-row positioning of the Junior.

Finally, it’s equipped with Grover Locking Rotomatic tuners, brushed nickel hardware and a Wraparound Lightning Bar tailpiece. 

The finish (Gibson’s classic Pelham Blue) looks particularly stunning on this unobscured canvas and nods to Nichols’ ‘Blues Power’ branding – his preferred description of his beefed-up, flame-grilled take on contemporary blues rock. 

Speaking of which, Epiphone’s promo clip is essential viewing for fans of both Nichols’ tonal gunshow and dramatic ’80s-style action-fantasy footage.

It sees the guitarist cruising down the highway in search of his tonal excalibur, only to discover the Blues Power axe in a mystical desert setting.

What follows is a blues-shred workout complete with fret slides, vitriolic bending and prodigious amounts of lightning. It is the He-Man meets Highlander of guitar promos. 

Even Epiphone’s tagline sounds like something of an ’80s movie poster: “Play it loud and proud; the power is in your hands.”

The price of all this Blues Power? Well, that will be $999. 

For an even better showcase of his playing prowess, check out Nichol’s star-studded live cover of Lynyrd Skynyrd classic Freebird, using Paul Kossoff’s 1959 Les Paul Burst.

For more information on the Jared James Nichols Blues Power Les Paul Custom, head to Epiphone.

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Matt Parker

Matt is a staff writer for GuitarWorld.com. Before that he spent 10 years as a freelance music journalist, interviewing artists for the likes of Total Guitar, Guitarist, Guitar World, MusicRadar, NME.com, DJ Mag and Electronic Sound. In 2020, he launched CreativeMoney.co.uk, which aims to share the ideas that make creative lifestyles more sustainable. He plays guitar, but should not be allowed near your delay pedals.