Magnificent 17″ archtop guitar which left the Kalamazoo factory in 1950, in exceptional original condition.

A very rare model in its Natural finish and cutaway variant, since it is one of only 23 identical guitars produced that same year. This queen of swing arrives at the crossroads of two eras, that of the post-war period when large acoustic archtop guitars still dominated the rhythm sections of jazz ensembles, and only a year before the introduction of its electric counterpart, the Gibson L-5CES equipped with the innovative P-90 pickup, which would redefine the very notion of what a jazz guitar is.

As for this instrument, there is no room for error, we are indeed in the presence of the most elegant and high-end instrument that Gibson could offer: a guitar built with choice woods – carved spruce top, curly maple back, sides and neck, fingerboard and bridge in Brazilian rosewood… as is often the case on these venerable guitars, the dappled patterns of the maple on the back are simply splendid, and under the reflection of the Natural varnish turned to amber we almost manage to visualize bubbles suspended in a glass of champagne, in perfect harmony with the refined reception parties that, one can easily imagine, this guitar could have hosted at the time. We also find the new “script” logo as well as the flowerpot pattern inlaid on the headstock, the tailpiece typically associated with the L-5 in the art deco style, the beautiful gold Kluson Sealfast tuners… the original pickguard having, as it is often the case, suffered from the natural degradation of the celluloid plastic which composes it, it was removed to be preserved in the case, and a copy of the original was installed in its place.

This guitar, although inherently acoustic, can be made electric by means of a floating pickup. We can, on request, take care of the installation of such a system.

Sold in its original Lifton case, fully adjusted, prepared and appraised by us in our workshop.


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