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Black Beauty


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  • 3 weeks later...

Ignore my previous but 1 post, he does want it back

just to clarify, there was a slight mix up with a photo of a dodgy looking man with some guitars, which Jimmy was informed was the owner of the BB, hence why he didnt want it back as he thought the man may have ..ahem ...done things with it

Of course the picture had nothing to do with it, he now really does want it back, and is anticipating it going to auction so he can step in and intercept it.

I have tracked down the owner, and forward details to Jimmy, lets hope he does get it back.. then he can play it when he gets up off his harris and starts touring


Jimmy is very pissed with the whole thing, lets hope it gets returned to the rightful owner.... watch this space

Jimmy used the Telecaster I think he got from Jeff Beck for great numbers.If this guitar is the right one and will return into his hands we are hungry

to wait for the sounds he will produce with this instrument.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I really don't believe this guitar is the 1 any news if the serial numbers match?? The sad thing is the guitar was stolen and will probally never be found if it was busted down and sold for it's parts which is what happens to most stolen guitars.

Pretty sad to say the least what happens. Especially, if this happened to this one, which is legendary in the performances it was involved it. Always hope I guess.

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Don't know if this has been posted before but here is a great Page (no pun intended) full of pictures of Jimmy and his guitars including a few of him with his Black Beauty. The Page Chronicles all of his guitars. There are lots of pics, far to many to post here so if you want to see them all click the link.


Fender Telecaster "Dragon Tele"

Believed to be a 1959 or 1960 model Telecaster. Easiest way to tell is the fact his has a top loader bridge yet the body still has holes on the back to put the string through, this was common on '59 and '60 Teles. The guitar was a gift from Jeff Beck in 1966 and it's believed to have originally belonged to John Owen (a bandmate of Jeff Beck) who bought it new in 1961. It was originally painted white, Page added 8 reflective circles around spring 1967. Later in '67 the guitar was stripped down and repainted with the Dragon theme by Page himself.

Well known for being the guitar responsible for the first album and likely the same Tele used on the Stairway to Heaven solo, it's studio use possibly extended further than that. Used live with Zeppelin from 1968 to May '69. Pickups are assumed to be stock. The middle position is believed to have been out of phase which can be heard on the You Shook Me solo.

The guitar still exists today, to an extent. In the 70's a friend of Page's "repainted" ruining the original paint work and sound of the guitar. The guitar was stored away by Page with the neck later being used on the brown B-Bender Tele. The body of the Dragon Tele is not the same as the brown B-Bender Tele despite popular belief.

Jimmy Page Guitar World Interview in 1998:
"I still have it (referring to the Dragon Tele), but it’s a tragic story. I went on tour with the ’59 Les Paul that I bought from Joe Walsh, and when I got back, a friend of mine had kindly painted over my paint job. He said, "I’ve got a present for you.” He thought he had done me a real favor. As you can guess, I wasn't real happy about that. His paint job totally screwed up the sound and the wiring, so only the neck pickup worked. I salvaged the neck and put it on my brown Tele string bender that I used in the Firm. As for the body… it will never be seen again! (laughs)"

Late 1966 with The Yardbirds

April 1967, the reflective circles have been added

Late 1967 w/ the Yardbirds - now repainted with the Dragon theme

September 7th, 1968 - first New Yardbirds/Zep gig.

January 1969 - Fillmore East

March 1969 - England (Supershow performance, clear shot of the top loader bridge)

The string holes on the back

May 1969 - Rose Palace, the last known live appearance of it based on photos.

Edited by juxtiphi
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The Black Beauty

1960 Gibson Les Paul Custom

Purhcased by Page in the early 60's in England. This gutiar is NOT from Keith Richards as mentioned in the Richard Cole book. Used for his session work in mid 60's. The guitar didn't make an appearance during Led Zeppelin until the 1970 UK tour and would be stolen in April 1970 between Boston and Montreal Canada according to Page. It was never returned and it's whereabouts remain unknown to this day. A missing ad was placed Rolling Stone Magazine.

The middle position on the pickup selector has a distinct honk/nasally quality to it. It's almost out of phase sounding but it's still technically in phase. The proximity of the middle and bridge pickup causes certain frequencies to be canceled out leaving you with that nasally/honky tone very similar to an out of phase sound. If you listen to the middle section of Bring it On Homefrom Royal Albert Hall you'll hear the honky/nasally tone I'm talking about. Sometime between February and March 1970 two extra switches were added. No word on what they actually did. Assumed just to be for extra pickup combos, not split, series/parallel, or any of that. It would make sense for them just to be for extra combinations too as he favored the typical in phase middle position of his #1 a lot even early on. With the stock Black Beauty set up he couldn't get that unless he had the ability to take some of the pickups out of the mix, hence the extra switches. The switches are also mentioned in the missing ad. The wiring mods were believed to have been performed by Joe Jammer.

As far as studio use goes during Led Zeppelin, there has been some talk about it being used on the second album. Page himself has said #1 was the main guitar for II, however in one interview he's taken as saying the Black Beauty was used for Whole Lotta Love, you can't really tell what he meant though.

Guitar World January 1991: "Which guitar did you use on Whole Lotta Love?
Page: The Les Paul. I had been using a Black Beauty, which got nicked (stolen) in the States. It disappeared in airports, somewhere between Boston and Montreal. A lot of my studio work had been done with that guitar. I didn't want to take it out of the house. Funny that once I did take it out, it got nicked!

The two known dates for Whole Lotta Love sessions is early May at Mirror Sound in LA which would have been during the second American tour and Olmypic Studios in June '69 which is what the album notes say. He didn't take the Custom on the 2nd American tour, so that would seem to rule out anything done in April/May '69 since they were in the US. As far as June goes, it's certainly more plausible as they were home. There's a studio picture from Olympic in June '69 though showing #1 in view, the Custom could have been lurking around, hard to say. Interestingly enough, recording engineer Eddie Kramer once claimed the Black Beauty was used for LZII as well.

Mid 1960's from an article on his session work.


January 9th 1970 - Royal Albert Hall


January 24th, 1970 - Leeds


March 31st, 1970 - Philadelphia


April 10th, 1970 - Miami



The missing ad in Rolling Stone


Edited by juxtiphi
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From Henry Smith Q & A on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Henry-The-Horse-Smith-a-Q-and-A-1674831679457966/?fref=ts&hc_location=ufi

Q: With regards to Jimmy Page's black beauty that was stolen, have you ever heard any rumours / had suspicions as to who lifted his guitar? Or, is it a complete mystery?

HS: Glade to announce the Black Beauty is now back in the hands of Jimmy thanks in part to Perry Margouleff. This happened just a few months ago. It was a happy day for me to see Jimmy get this back.

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