【Staff Pick!】1990 Gibson Custom Shop Firebird I (Sunburst)

*English follows!






1990年製 Gibson Custom Shop Firebird I (Sunburst)です。









Hello friends!


My pick for today is…

1990 Gibson Custom Shop Firebird I (Sunburst).

Good ol’ Firebirds. A very unique guitar in the Gibson line with its distinctive body shape, Neck-Thru construction and mini-humbuckers. I find the Firebird I, which is kind of like the Les Paul Junior with only one pickup and wrap-around tailpiece, slightly different from others in the Firebird family: the III, the V and the VII. The I’s two features mentioned above makes a huge difference, and while I tend to lean on the neck pickup when I’m playing anything other than the I because the bridge pickup tends to sound a bit weak compared to the neck, I find it enjoyable to play the bridge on the I. You obviously don’t have a choice, but the bridge pickup seems to have a different feel and tone, maybe because of the wrap-around tailpiece.

As I have mentioned in previous posts when I did the Johnny Winter Firebird Vs and other Firebirds, mini-humbuckers, though a humbucking pickup indeed, are very different from regular full-sized humbuckers in general. The low-end is much tighter and the treble frequencies much brighter and sparkly, and does not have the midrange juice like regular humbuckers do. Sometimes that juice becomes too much and would muddy up the tone, but with a mini-humbucker that pretty much never happens, so a lot of times they are said to sound somewhere in between a humbucker and a single-coil.

When that kind of pickup is mounted on the bridge position and bridge position only, you might expect a harshly bright sound with a lot of point that’s hard to tame. This isn’t the case with this Firebird I. As I said, the warp-around tailpiece, with its slightly looser string tension, seems to mild out that edge a bit. There is a lot of harmonics in the treble frequencies, but not something that would destroy your ears. It’s that “Shhhhhh” that you get especially when overdriven which feels really good.

The neck profile isn’t as big and fat like recent Custom Shop made ones, so maybe a lot of you might find this one more comfortable. A legit choice if you want to go over your Cream repertoire, but you can do way more than just that.

Come see for yourself here at Nico-Nico Guitars!

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