Bay Area Vintage Guitars is proud to offer this pristine 1956 Gibson Les Paul Custom Black Beauty, an all-original example in time-capsule condition with its original Lifton hardshell case.

Most of us know the story, but it's worth repeating. The Les Paul Custom Black Beauty was designed to be a classier, more upmarket instrument, and by and large, it is. The Les Paul Custom reputedly came about because Les Paul himself requested a guitar that was like a tuxedo. Overall, that analogy fits this guitar well with how we feel about it, as It oozes quality and feels fantastic after 68 years.

This beauty is in fantastic all-original condition, including its original finish, switches, frets, nuts, and tuners. The electronics and wiring haven’t been touched since the guitar left Kalamazoo, and the Bumblebee capacitors are all original.

Even the gold hardware only shows a light patina, only some minor finish wear - a couple of minor dings and light scratches - hardly any checking; it appears that the ebony fretboard has rarely been played. We were challenged to find a '50s Les Paul Custom in finer condition than this one!

This example features a P-90 pickup in the bridge position and the new Alnico pickup (Alnico is an acronym for Aluminum, Nickel, and Cobalt) in the neck position. Unlike the Les Paul Model, the Custom didn’t have a maple top with a mahogany back but was instead made from solid mahogany.

Comparing the staple with a neck P-90 in a similarly equipped Goldtop demonstrates that the former is a powerful pickup. Despite being set significantly lower than the P-90, the staple matches its output and then some. But for a high-output pickup, there’s no shortage of clarity; this one sounds airy and bright.

Get the balance right and connect with a pseudo ‘out of phase’ tone. Leaving the neck volume on 10 and rolling back the bridge is like applying a notch filter. So, the tone still has a phase quality, but it’s fuller, smoother, and sweeter. 

This guitar proves you don't have to have PAFs in a 50's Les Paul to reach guitar heaven.
Professionally cleaned and set up by my Luthier with new strings and ready for its next home.
Please look at all photos closely, as they are part of the description and are of the actual item you will receive. Please reach out with any questions.

Bay Area Vintage Guitars

Bay Area Vintage Guitars

Black Beauty
Original Hard
Bay Area Vintage Guitars
Rik Walters
Phone: (424) 234-3803‬