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Old 09-02-2006, 05:21 AM
kowk's Avatar
kowk kowk is offline
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Default Peter Green Les Paul is for sale !!!!!

Here is a link:
The price is $2,000,000.00 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 09-07-2006, 11:44 PM
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fleetfootmike fleetfootmike is offline
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Location: Peterborough UK
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This provoked a lot of discussion amongst some of my friends. I had to eventually set my thoughts down on my LJ as to why this guitar is so special...

Peter Green's Les Paul is up for sale.

I've commented on this a couple of times in IRC, to be met with a range of replies, and I guess I need to get my thoughts in order as to why this is such a special guitar, and why, while I still whimper at the price, I can almost understand it.

Peter Green, for those who didn't know, was the founder member of Fleetwood Mac, along with Mick Fleetwood, John McVie, and Jeremy Spencer. He'd just left John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, for (with hindsight, somewhat ironically) the reason that he felt Mayall was straying too far away from the blues, and formed his own band playing pure blues. Green (as seems to befit Fleetwood Mac) was something of a troubled soul, and after two or three immensely successful years, basically just quit, being unable to handle the pressures of fame.

The guitar is a 1959 Les Paul Standard. In and of itself it's a beautiful piece of wood: the maple top has a really classic flame in the grain (the 'tiger stripe' pattern), and unlike many, it's quite restrained and subtle. That's a lot of its appeal - there's a vogue for copies of '59 Les Pauls, ranging from cheap Japanese to Gibson's loving Custom Shop recreations, and they tend, to my mind, to have much more overt red-to-amber sunbursts and flametops, and ... this one just says 'class' in a quietly understated way. It's rare, just by being a '59 Standard - Gibson stopped making thm altogether for most of the 60s (which is, when you think how popular they are now, almost unthinkable). More rare, too, given the finish - not all by any means were flametops like this.

That doesn't make it worth two million dollars though.

Whether by accident or design (I think it was a botched repair), Green's Les Paul is unusual. The neck pickup was removed and rewound at some time early in its life, and in doing so, it was rebuilt/reconnected with its windings in parallel/out of phase This means, if you play the guitar with both pickups on, a very distinctive tone which was uniquely Green's, and makes recordings with him on (such as Oh Well, Black Magic Woman, etc) very recogniseable. It's not unique any more, since any number of folks have done it to a stock Les Paul to emulate his sound, but...

When Green gave up the music business, he apparently made a conscious effort to rid himself of the things associated with his fame. He loaned the guitar to Gary Moore (at that time, with a band called Skid Row, since with Thin Lizzy and solo), whom he had been really impressed by. Moore's story is here, but in summary, he eventually asked Moore if he wanted to buy it. Moore couldn't afford it, so Green suggested that he sold his Gibson SG and paid him what he got for it - in the end, Moore got £160 for the SG, but Green would only take £100 (apparently it cost him £120 originally).

Moore used it for a sizeable chunk of the next three decades: certainly with Thin Lizzy, and on a lot of his '90s blues work. Basically, it's been a working guitar, as evidenced by the buckle rash on the back, the dings and pick-markings on the front. Compared to a lot of famous guitars, I think the chief distinction is that for the duration of its life it's being used, sweated over, rather than kept in a glass case. The two guitars that spring to mind to match it as working instruments are Brian May of Queen's 'Red Special', and Eric Clapton's primary Strat 'Blackie'. By contrast, the white Strat Jimi Hendrix played at Woodstock has been through several collectors' hands since then, and probably kept in a case or a vault untouched.

It's really hard to explain why this guitar resonates with me, and so many other people, above and beyond many other famous guitars. Some of it's the inherent beauty and rarity of it, some of it's that it was used to make some of the defining music of a great, sadly broken, talent in Peter Green. Some of it's the whole story of how it changed hands. And some of it is just that it has /been/ ... a guitar.

A friend said "It's a guitar." And I corrected her, and said, "No, it isn't just a guitar." And maybe with reflection I was wrong.

It has a unique voice, and the hands that have made that voice speak have contributed, in different ways, to some of the defining music of my life, many other people's lives. But the thing that perhaps sets it aside from the other 'celebrity guitars' is an indefinable something. In a way, it IS just a guitar. It's been picked up and played, because it has six strings, pickups, and it made the sound that someone needed at the time: it's been thrown in cases, the backs of cars, played in sweaty pubs, big stages, studios, rehearsal rooms, it's been loaned, bought, sold, dented, loved, probably sworn at... Nothing's happened to this guitar that hasn't happened to electric guitars the world over.

It In some sense, it is perhaps the closest we'll come to the Platonic 'form' of an electric guitar - the guitar that somehow defines 'guitarness'.

Would I buy it?
If a lottery win landed in my lap, I wouldn't think twice.

Would I play it?
How could I not?

I'm close to tears just writing this.
Fleetfoot Mike -

Last edited by fleetfootmike; 09-07-2006 at 11:47 PM..
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Old 09-10-2006, 08:19 PM
maryellen healy maryellen healy is offline
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Pine Bush Ny
Posts: 42
Default the price tag for gary moore

Dear Folks

A firnd of mine ,who is a guitar trader, returned from a guitar expo during the summer i texas and told me that in private sale, Gary Moore sold the said 59 les paul for 1.2 million. Apparently this was a bargain for people of disposable wealth or insane greed. legend has it that gary moore gave a blank check to the maker of the first marshall tube amp but was rebuffed. in either case, gary moore's word to PG isn't worth much or he has other priorities.

Regarding the stuff on the Les Paul Sunburst site. Many americans still have only a vauge recollection of PG. He camre through like the wind and left whispers of greatness in his path. Many of these folks only got into british groups as an afterthought. This country is littered with the forgotten Roy Buchannans , Michael Bloomfields and Danny Gattons who reach fame posthumously(forgive spelling) or after thet are a shell of themselves. It was a different time in the sixties yet fans are always johny come latelys to trailblazers. Plus The vintage Les Paul Crowd do not even knw why they like them. If it was not for Clapton, Bloomfield, Green, and Allman/Betts, it would not arouse the interest that generates that high dollar figure.

old time PG fan, novice chat room participant
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Old 09-11-2006, 06:17 PM
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Wouter Vuijk Wouter Vuijk is offline
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Welcome to the ledge Maryellen
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Old 09-13-2006, 03:08 AM
maryellen healy maryellen healy is offline
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Location: Pine Bush Ny
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thank you

when I think about the sale of that particular guitar, my mind goes in several places. It is after all just a guitar, as evedinced by it being broken in a car crash. I get the sence that PG bought it to emulate Eric Clapton when he was using it with Mayall. In Martin Calimis's book it is said that PG was not happy with the play of it. His modification is perhaps the most famous one, even if a mistake. Back then good guitars were hard to come by. Yet on that instrument he produced, to my mind some of the most inspired, pieces that have been played. Was it the guitar? No. When I first heard him play little Walters "Last Night" on Fleetwood Mac in Chicago. I heard the most simple yet elequent song. As a musician, I have played that song ever since I bought the record 35 years ago. Love that burns just boils with unresolved tension and anguish......
When you look at other musicians wth guitars it is hard to identify them together. While Eric Clapton is known for Blackie, Fans say he played his best and blusiest when he was with mayall long ago. He used a 59 Paul then. With Cream he played the SG and the 335. While you can go on ad nauseum about cream, how many good songs were ever done. They had very little material. Otis Rush Played with anything he could get his hands on. Unfortunatly his greatest years saw little recording. BB King has had how many "Lucilles"? Most of his hits were done on a variety of guitars.
The truth for me is that for a period of time Mr Green played that particular guitar and "the muse" or "god" or whatever it is channeled through some of the finest musical pieces played on record. The very avarice that drives the price of that instrument has more to say about our society than its worth.

I even wondered because of the timing, if gary moore used some of the money to seed Peters sanctuary. Hope springs eternal.
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Old 09-13-2006, 12:11 PM
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chiliD chiliD is offline
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Originally Posted by maryellen healy View Post
While Eric Clapton is known for Blackie, Fans say he played his best and blusiest when he was with mayall long ago. He used a 59 Paul then. With Cream he played the SG and the 335.
And let's not forget the Firebird I, as well. And, the Custom Telecaster with the Stratocaster neck that he used in Blind Faith (along with the aforementioned 335).
Among God's creations, two, the dog and the guitar, have taken all the sizes and all the shapes in order not to be separated from the man.---Andres Segovia
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Old 09-13-2006, 02:00 PM
maryellen healy maryellen healy is offline
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Location: Pine Bush Ny
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I do remember the guitar heads musing over the reverse Firebird. The players back then were just as trendy but the money was not there like it is now.
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Old 09-12-2008, 01:20 PM
yeti yeti is offline
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Default Peter Green's other 59 Les Paul

Hi, Folks
Peter Green had another late 50's sunburst, bought for him by Mick Fleetwood in the late 70's. Peter had the choice of 3 killer Les Pauls and he picked one with a replacement neck. That guitar is pictured in Martin Celmins PG autobiography.Peter supposedly really loved that guitar because it was just like his old one, but later gave it to a homeless man in an elevator. Mick Fleetwood then recovered the guitar and that's where the story becomes murky. My friend and I went to Lloyds of London's Germany office in 1984 to look and buy 2 guitars, a 52 and a 58 (?) Les Paul that had been recoverd in a police raid and where in the possession of the insurance company. Now, 25 years later I posted pics of them on the Les Paul Forum ( under "vintage Les Pauls-recognize these beauties? and got a great response. My friend's guitar is that guitar, formerly owned by Peter Green.I am trying to find out what happened after Mick Fleetwood got it back from the pawnshop in LA. Any help is greatly appreciated.

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