Gibson, Custom Jimmy Page Number Two Les Paul, 2009


Custom Jimmy Page Number Two Les Paul
Serial Number: 
Page Burst “Number Two”
Humbucking Pickups
The Story Behind


About the Guitar:

Gibson has produced three Jimmy Page signature models. The first was issued in the mid 1990s. It was based on a stock Les Paul Standard of the time (rather than the more prestigious and historically correct 1958/1959 re-issues issued by the Gibson Custom Shop). The modifications were based on Jimmy Page's "#2" 1959 Les Paul, which had been modified with push-pull potentiometers on all four control knobs, as well as mini push-pull switches under the pickguard. This first version of the Jimmy Page Signature did not have the mini-switches under the pickguard, nor did it replicate the custom-shaved neck profile of Jimmy Page's guitar, but it did include the four push-pull pots. With all four pots pushed down, the guitar operated as normal. Pulling up the tone pot for the Bridge or Neck pickup turned the respective pickup into a single coil, rather than humbucking pickup. Pulling up the volume pot for either pickup changed it from series (stock) to parallel. The first iteration of the Jimmy Page Signature utilized Gibson's then-current high-output humbuckers: a 496R in the neck position and a 498T at the bridge.

In 2005, after two years of research and development utilizing Jimmy Page's actual guitar, Gibson Custom Shop issued a limited run of Jimmy Page Signature guitars based on Jimmy Page's No. 1 1959. This time, Gibson worked directly from Jimmy Page's actual guitar, which he lent to Gibson for the project. The guitar featured just one push-pull pot, just like Page's No. 1, which reversed the phase of the pickups in the up position, which in Page's own words gave "a close approximation to the Peter Green sound." Gibson also went to great lengths to replicate the accuracy of the pickups, creating two custom pickups, which were available only in this guitar. The pickups were based on the Burstbucker vintage-style pickups, but featured stronger Alnico magnets and slightly higher output than the other Burstbuckers, as well as slightly higher treble response, which accurately reproduced the sound of the pickups in Page's guitar. Gibson also replicated the neck profile, which was heavily modified prior to Page acquiring the guitar, and the Grover tuners that Page favored.

Several years later, Gibson issued its third Jimmy Page Signature guitar, this one based closely on Jimmy Page's #2. Issued in a production run of 325 guitars, the guitar more accurately reproduced Page's heavily modified No. 2 than the original Signature model of the 1990s, and featured the 4 push-pull pots, the two mini-switches under the pick guard, accurate tuners and sound-accurate pickups (the same pickups that were used in the 2005 Jimmy Page No. 1 Signature), as well as an accurate neck profile. As in the original Signature model of the 1990s, pulling up the neck or bridge volume pots switched the respective pickups' coils from series to parallel, and pulling up the tone pots switched the respective pickups from humbucking to single coil. The two push-button DPDT switches mounted beneath the pickguard provide universal switching functions, regardless of the positions of the push-pull pots. With the switch mounted toward the bridge-end of the pickguard in the out position, the bridge pickup's phase is reversed. With the switch mounted toward the neck-end of the pickguard in the out position, both pickups are wired in series and out of phase. With both switches out, both pickups are in series and in phase. The Jimmy Page "Number Two" Les Paul is finished with a sunburst finish to replicate the appearance of the original guitar. 325 of these guitars were made, with the initial 25 being autographed by Jimmy Page.

This is the announcement from Gibson on the 2009 Jimmy  Page's #2 :

Unheard of… unless, of course, you’re Jimmy Page. That’s exactly what the legendary Led Zeppelin guitarist, perhaps the world’s most iconic Les Paul player, did with his own ’59 Les Paul Standard, and now—thanks to the extreme efforts ofGibson’s Custom Shop and the intimate cooperation of Jimmy Page himself—the artist’s hallowed "Number TwoLes Paulis available to mere mortals, in the form of the Custom Shop Jimmy Page "Number TwoLes Paul. Produced in strictly limited numbers, with two levels of aging, this guitar captures the look, feel, sound, and versatility of one of the greatest artist-owned Les Pauls of all time, and it is likely to disappear from authorized Gibsondealers in record time.

The 1959 Les Paul that has come to be known as "Number Two" was purchased byPage in 1973 after trying for some time to acquire an exceptional second Les Paul. This was several years after having acquired his other legendary Les Paul — "Number One", a ’59 ’Burst with shaved-down neck profile and no serial number—from Joe Walsh. "Number Two" was essentially all original when he acquired it. Jimmy did have some modifications done to the neck shape so that it would more nearly match the feel of his "Number One". The neck is certainly slim but not to such extremes as the now-ultra-slim neck on "Number One". It had a strong, beautiful sunburst finish with a red element that had faded to a dusky amber-brown, along with a clear serial number dating it to 1959.Page played this Les Paul frequently through his days with Led Zeppelin, and in the early ’80s decided to make it an even more versatile instrument. Page also added that he wanted to "explore the full range of what the two humbuckers have to offer". He designed a switching system for coil splitting, series/parallel, and phase-reverse options for both pickups, and employed a skilled electronics technician to devise a working schematic and make his sonic vision a reality. The result comprised a push/pull pot on each of the guitar’s four standard controls, plus two push-button switches hidden beneath the pickguard, all mounted on a ’59 Les Paul Standard that is otherwise a superb example of the breed, both in tone and playability.

The Custom Shop Jimmy Page "Number TwoLes Paul was recreated with intense, inch-by-inch examination of Page’s original guitar, inside and out. The process of getting it right involved the production of a number of hand-built prototypes, each of which was checked and critiqued in detail by Page himself. Approval of the final iteration was only offered after the legendary artist had intricately examined and extensively played this last prototype in his London home — after which it was given the thumbs-up, worthy of being the template for the Custom Shop Jimmy Page "Number TwoLes Paul. Only 325 examples will be produced in total: The first 25 instruments are to be aged by vintage-reproduction master Tom Murphy then inspected, played and hand signed and numbered by Jimmy Page personally. An additional 100 guitars will be given the extensive aging treatment and 200 will be finished to Gibson’s VOS specs.

This guitar is one of the 100!

Compared to the original Page guitar the uncovered humbuckers are black. The pickup manufacturer Dimarzio has a trademark on double-white bobbin exposed humbucking pickups. Thus the reason Gibson elected to used all black exposed pickups for the bridge position in the Jimmy Page Number Two Custom Shop Les Paul.

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