Gibson B.B. King “Lucille” ES limited edition – in Alpine White!
Lucille gets a makeover for 2019
Gibson has just announced a new limited edition version of the BB Ling “Lucille” ES and it now comes in an Alpine White paint job. They asked Jared James Nichols to take it for a spin in their official demo video below.
Gibson B.B. King “Lucille” ES limited edition in Alpine White
B.B. King was possibly one of the best known Blues musicians of his generation, with a beautifully smooth vibrato style. He was known for his many trademark licks and most guitarists will know him for the ‘B.B. King’ blues box pentatonic riffs.
Now Gibson is releasing an Alpine White limited edition version of his famous signature ES that’s based on “Lucille”, his original guitar. The guitar was named after a woman who was the subject of a fight between two men at a gig played by B.B., who later had to rescue his guitar from the venue after it burst into flames.
What, if anything, has changed for this edition? It’s a semi-hollow design, but lacks the f-holes. This version apparently has a Richlite fingerboard rather than ebony. It has ‘Lucille’ engraved on the truss rod cover and BB King on the bridge humbucker cover. The other features haven’t really changed, so you still get a pair of Gibson 490R and 490T humbucking pickups.
The pickups are slightly overwound to give you a bit of extra bite when you need it. There’s also a 6-way Varitone switch and stereo outputs. The Varitone gives you six preset tone caps, so you can configure the guitar quickly and easily for different tones. The last stand-out piece of hardware is the TP-6 tailpiece, essentially a set of fine tuners on the bridge similar to a Floyd Rose. They give you an extra way of dealing with tuning and make it easier (or more of a faff) to tune in the guitar.
All the hardware is finished in gold, as befits Mr King. It works well with the Alpine White finish, I feel.
You can watch Jared James Nichols put the new Alpine White version through its paces in the official demo video below. I can’t see it on the Gibson site but have found them already listed for pre-order on Thomann here.
UPDATE – As of 30 November it is now listed on Gibson site
RRP – EUR 4998 / GBP 4420
- Gibson BB King Lucille in Alpine White: Gibson
Richlite fingerboards and almost $5k guitars do not play well together but I suppose gibson has to try to get rid of all the ones Henry bought somehow.
As long as it keeps the frets in place and doesn’t disintegrate, then I’m fine with Richlite.
Ebony is getting scarce and at some point, we might have to stop using many kinds of wood we currently enjoy and take for granted.
It gets a bad rap, but Richlite should, in theory, be a good substitute.
It would be a lot better if he actually played something instead of just going through the tones; we already know what it can sound like. Anyway, probably too expensive for me.