by Jef | Approximate reading time: 2 Minutes
Gibson Les Paul Artist Series - Pete Townshend Deluxe Gold Top '76

Gibson Les Paul Artist Series - Pete Townshend Deluxe Gold Top '76  ·  Source:


The new Gibson Pete Townshend Gold Top ’76 Les Paul is a recreation of his iconic guitar from that late ’70s period. Part of Gibson USA’s Les Paul Artist Series and celebrating the great windmill axe player’s live work from that period. 



Pete smashed the original guitar at a live show in 1976 at The Who’s show at Boston Garden. The remains are now on display at the V&A Museum in London. So we have to assume this reissue is a close approximation of that original Les Paul, as the original guitar is in pieces.

Townsend modified the original Les Paul Goldtop before he smashed it with a DiMarzio Super Distortion Humbucker  which he had fitted between the regular mini-humbuckers of the guitar. The guitar has an extra switch behind the tailpiece which is used to add that extra pickup and one of the original tone controls is actually a blend control for that extra pickup as well.

Limited Run

Gibson is only making 150 of these guitars and so you will need to be fairly quick to get one and probably a huge Who fan as well.


It is a mahogany body with a walnut stripe and Gibson state they are all lightweight at around 6lbs in weight. Which for a 1970s pancake bodied Les Paul is almost unheard of, as most ’70s Les Pauls are affectionately know as ‘boat anchors’ the Norlin guitars as they are know do have their fans though.

Pretty sure it’ll have a certificate and you also get some custom strap locks included in the price. Think I would rather have the more useful Pete Townsend Fender Stratocaster from earlier this year myself.

Not sure I would want one myself, as I would find that extra pickup a bit of a pain and would just end up smashing it…

RRP USD $3999 only 150 guitars available world wide.

More details about the Pete Townshend Gold Top ’76 Les Paul can be found on the Gibson site here

Gibson Les Paul Artist Series - Pete Townshend Deluxe Gold Top '76

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