A superb Gibson L-5CES from 1962, in very good condition.

One of the rarest instruments ever built by Gibson, on one hand because the L-5 models were only produced in very small quantities at the beginning of the 1960s – only 30 examples with a sunburst and cutaway (CES) were produced in 1962, among which the present instrument. On the other hand, this guitar comes with a very peculiar configuration, as unlike the vast majority of electric L-5s which were equipped with two humbucker pickups, this one is equipped with only one pickup in the neck position. As such, it is an identical copy of the single-pickup instruments built by Gibson on special order and seen throughout the 60s in the hands of none other than Wes Montgomery – at ABC’s London studios in 1965, on many album covers and brochures over the years before Montgomery’s unfortunate and untimely passing… Anyone who is an aficionado of this jazz master knows well the round and mellow tones which characterize this archtop instrument, enhanced by the single pickup in the neck position – and unsurprisingly, all of this is found on the present instrument.

The guitar reached us in stunning condition, albeit bearing the signs of use over the decades: presumably to better fit the hands of the player that once used it, the neck profile has been modified and refinished, and a partial overspray is to be noted on upper part of the back and shoulders. The pickguard has been replaced with an elegant reproduction, the original part having disintegrated as is often the case with parts made of cellulose plastics from the era. The L-5 comes equipped with its original humbucking pickup bearing a Patent No. label, both potentiometers are a matched set dated to 1961, all solder joints and associated wiring are untouched. Beautiful Iced Tea Sunburst finish, original Kluson Sealfast tuners and ornamented tailpiece typical of the model.

The guitar has been thoroughly appraised and entirely set up in our workshop, and comes today in perfect playing condition. Sold in its original brown Lifton hardshell case.


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