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The 1977 Acoustic Set

History of Jimmy's #1 Les Paul w/Joe Walsh

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I don't know if I'm putting this question in the right spot, but here goes. Does anyone know if Joe Walsh used the 1959 Les Paul he gave/sold to Jimmy on record or live with the James Gang before he gave it to Jimmy? It would be interesting to hear how the guitar sounded in Joe's hands before it made it's way to Jimmy's.

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I don't know if I'm putting this question in the right spot, but here goes. Does anyone know if Joe Walsh used the 1959 Les Paul he gave/sold to Jimmy on record or live with the James Gang before he gave it to Jimmy? It would be interesting to hear how the guitar sounded in Joe's hands before it made it's way to Jimmy's.

Good question. I'm not sure. If I recall correctly, the guitar was given to him in Apr '69.

I'll see what I can find out.

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Not to be pedantic, but the anoracks on the Les Paul forum have determined it is in fact a 1958. It was always a question, even to Jimmy, as the serial number was removed when the neck was modified. I too will see what I can find out about its pre-Page life.

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I'm told it was Joe's "main guitar". I take that to mean it was undoubtedly used live and in the studio. You'd have to further examine Joe's recording career to for the extent of those

activities.

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That one doesn't look like Jimmy's though. Too much flame. In fact, after looking through dozeds upon dozens of James Gang pics, I only see him with Strats. Funk #49 is certainly a Strat. My guess is the LP would have been earlier in his career, because by 68, he'd clearly gone into a Strat phase.

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there is a video if the James Gang on German TV in 1971 here he is clearly using a Les Paul. Widely available, I have it, or search youtube.I was under the impression Joe gave Jimmy the guitar in 1975!! I would have bet on it, so where is the documentation he gave it up in 1969? Not disbelieving, just curious.

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there is a video if the James Gang on German TV in 1971 here he is clearly using a Les Paul. Widely available, I have it, or search youtube.I was under the impression Joe gave Jimmy the guitar in 1975!! I would have bet on it, so where is the documentation he gave it up in 1969? Not disbelieving, just curious.

Toronto, Feb 6, 1969. It was Jimmy's "Number 2" Les Paul he got later. The Walsh guitar was before the 70s. ;)

PageToronto69.jpg

PageToronto69b.jpg

Edited by Evster2012

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there is a video if the James Gang on German TV in 1971 here he is clearly using a Les Paul. Widely available, I have it, or search youtube.I was under the impression Joe gave Jimmy the guitar in 1975!! I would have bet on it, so where is the documentation he gave it up in 1969? Not disbelieving, just curious.

Well, for one there are pictures of Jimmy with LP #1 at this show:

1969.05.02 - Rose Palace, Pasadena, California

(FYI: Jimmy got LP #2 in 1975)

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Les Paul Standard '59

Gift from Joe Walsh, serial number 91703. Head modified to look like a '58 model head. A pair of spring loaded buttons have been attached beneath the lower edge of the scratchplate. One for choosing between pickups in series or parallel, the other allow the choice of ordinary or phased sounds. Regular potentiometers replaced scrapped in favor of two pairs of push/pulls allowing coil-tapping on either pickup and the option of employing all four coils in parallel. Modifications made by Jimmy's recording studio maintenance tech Steve Hoyland.

Again, I believe Joe gave it to Jimmy in April '69 (in San Francisco?) but I'm only going

from memory at the moment...

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This courtesy of "Huw" in the Peak District:

#1 was bought from Joe Walsh in April 1969; #2 has nothing to do with Walsh, although it's common for the story to be mixed up.

#1 is the guitar refered to as "the 58", even though it is most likely actually a 59.

#2 is a 1959, sn 91703.

Regarding the real year of #1:

a) in all interviews Jimmy has said it's a 59

B) Walsh said it was a 59

c) when Gibson had #1 to copy for the signature series they told me that numerous measurements & details (eg heel shape) were consistent with it being a 59

d) the idea that it's a 58 seems to trace back to a single magazine article that has been recycled, quoted & ripped off ever since.

As has been mentioned, production details didn't change overnight on Jan 1st, so there were plenty of 1960 guitars built with 1959 style features. However, that only takes out point © above - the others continue to point to a 59.

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Les Paul Standard '59

Gift from Joe Walsh, serial number 91703. Head modified to look like a '58 model head. A pair of spring loaded buttons have been attached beneath the lower edge of the scratchplate. One for choosing between pickups in series or parallel, the other allow the choice of ordinary or phased sounds. Regular potentiometers replaced scrapped in favor of two pairs of push/pulls allowing coil-tapping on either pickup and the option of employing all four coils in parallel. Modifications made by Jimmy's recording studio maintenance tech Steve Hoyland.

Again, I believe Joe gave it to Jimmy in April '69 (in San Francisco?) but I'm only going

from memory at the moment...

Not a reliable quote. That's the serial number of Number Two. That guitar still sports the number to this day. Number 1 has no number on the peghead, hence the years of debate. Further, there is no difference between a 58 and 59 headstock. The same misinformation was on LZ.org when I used to post there. The only differences between a 57 and a 59 are the switch to a center-split matched top and the transistion from Goldtop to sunburst. Jimmy's falls right in between during the transition.

*edit to add* Leave it HUW to get there right ahead of me! :lol:

Edited by Evster2012

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Les Paul Standard '59

Gift from Joe Walsh, serial number 91703. Head modified to look like a '58 model head. A pair of spring loaded buttons have been attached beneath the lower edge of the scratchplate. One for choosing between pickups in series or parallel, the other allow the choice of ordinary or phased sounds. Regular potentiometers replaced scrapped in favor of two pairs of push/pulls allowing coil-tapping on either pickup and the option of employing all four coils in parallel. Modifications made by Jimmy's recording studio maintenance tech Steve Hoyland.

Again, I believe Joe gave it to Jimmy in April '69 (in San Francisco?) but I'm only going

from memory at the moment...

The WLL performance on 4/26/69 in SF sounds like it was played with a Les Paul. But, I don't remember when Jimmy got the black beauty (sleep deprived) so it may have been that guitar if he had it at the time.

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*edit to add* Leave it to HUW to get there right ahead of me! :lol:

His comments and yours appear to be in agreement. Nicely done, chaps!

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As has been mentioned, production details didn't change overnight on Jan 1st, so there were plenty of 1960 guitars built with 1959 style features. However, that only takes out point © above - the others continue to point to a 59.

I should add that the only change made in the 1960 model year was in the finish, as the earlier sunbersts were prone to fading when exposed to light.

*edit to add*

His comments and yours appear to be in agreement. Nicely done, chaps!

Bloody gearheads! :lol:

Edited by Evster2012

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Toronto, Feb 6, 1969. It was Jimmy's "Number 2" Les Paul he got later. The Walsh guitar was before the 70s. ;)

PageToronto69.jpg

PageToronto69b.jpg

Somehow I missed Ev's comments when I replied. Ev, I question the date of the second pic. Plant's shirt looks very similar to the one below, which is from the Atlanta Intl Pop Festival where they played on 7/5/69 which would put that pic later in the year.

LZ69sm.jpg

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Somehow I missed Ev's comments when I replied. Ev, I question the date of the second pic. Plant's shirt looks very similar to the one below, which is from the Atlanta Intl Pop Festival where they played on 7/5/69 which would put that pic later in the year.

LZ69sm.jpg

Upon reflection I was thinking the exact same thing! Good spot! :lol:

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BTW, Joe didn't give the guitar to Jimmy. Not according to Joe at least. ;)

Correct as pointed out above. Jimmy purchased it from Joe. Can't recall the exact amount (Jimmy mentioned it in one of the Guitar World pieces last year but I'm too lazy to dig it out) but as many of the '58-'59's they were bought for a few hundred bucks and now all will pull 6-figures on the market. Amazing resell value I must say.

And Ev you're right about the lack of a number. I personally know a guy who was in the Gibson shop when it came in years ago and he specifically mentioned that.

There ain't nothing like a '58-'59 Les Paul....except maybe a pre-war Martin!

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Atlanta Intl Pop Festival where they played on 7/5/69 which would put that pic later in the year.

The mystery deepens. Bonham is wearing a Texas Int'l Pop Festival shirt! That was August 31st! :lol:

Edited by Evster2012

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In the original Guitar World Led Zep Special, Jimmy quoted that No 1 was a 59' and No 2 (which was his main live guitar once purchased ) was a 58'. I've found no reason two dispute this.

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In the original Guitar World Led Zep Special, Jimmy quoted that No 1 was a 59' and No 2 (which was his main live guitar once purchased ) was a 58'. I've found no reason two dispute this.

They're switched on that one. And if you pull out the centerfold in the very same publication's "Most Valuable Guitars" it says "Jimmy's 1958 Number One Les Paul". That magazine has contradicted itself on several occasions, and even issued corrections from the editor. I'll take the word of a Gibson Custon Shop luthier over a rock magazine thanks. B)

Jimmy's Number One has a shaved neck. That's when the serial number was sanded off. Number Two has a normal neck and a serial number. The Gibson Signature model has a modified neck. That would be cause enough to dispute Guitar World.

If you feel the need to go deeper, Jimmy's Tom Murphy aged replica has nicks in the finish that were on Jimmy's main guitar years before he bought Number Two. His main guitar was always Number One. By comparison, Number Two is nearly flawless as he hardly used it but for a backup if he broke a string, as he did in 1973 with his Cherry Red Les Paul which was his backup before he bought Number Two.

Family portrait circa 1977. Note Number Two missing its pickup cover.

JimmysArsenal.jpg

Edited by Evster2012

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In the original Guitar World Led Zep Special, Jimmy quoted that No 1 was a 59' and No 2 (which was his main live guitar once purchased ) was a 58'. I've found no reason two dispute this.

I am sorry the article is wrong. Jimmy's guitars have been thoroughly researched by several members here and other forums. #2 is definitely a 59, based on the serial number, which is available. It also wasn't his main guitar from '75 on.

Edit: Damn, Ev typed faster than me again!

Edited by 3hrsoflunacy

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I am sorry the article is wrong. Jimmy's guitars have been thoroughly researched by several members here and other forums. #2 is definitely a 59, based on the serial number, which is available. It also wasn't his main guitar from '75 on.

Edit: Damn, Ev typed faster than me again!

Haha! And yeah, find a photo of Jimmy in 1977 with a pickup cover off. ;)

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