Epiphone is launching its new Inspired By Gibson Collection and these 2020 models will now feature what they are calling the Kalamazoo headstock.
Inspired By Gibson Collection
If you follow my articles you may well remember the announcement last September that Epiphone headstocks – including the Les Paul guitars – would be getting an overhaul at some point in the future. Well, the future is now and in 2020 we will start to see the new Kalamazoo headstock as part of the Inspired By Gibson Collection.
It looks like we may well get to see this redesigned headstock shape during Winter NAMM and find out which models will be carrying it from now on. The new Kalamazoo headstock shape is a lot closer to the famous ‘open book’ shape of the Gibson USA models. However, it isn’t a direct copy, so there is still some distinction between the two brands, which I feel is a bit of a cop out.
You can see the new Epiphone Les Paul Custom Ebony and Les Paul Special TV Yellow in the photo above, to get an idea of what to expect. The whole new range includes the Epiphone Les Paul Junior, Les Paul Special, SG Special, Les Paul Standard 50s, Les Paul Standard 60s, SG Standard and a 61 SG Standard w/Maestro.
Nearly there, but not quite
As an aside, it’s interesting that Gibson is still using the headstock to differentiate its more affordable models from its premium guitars. PRS, for example, has the same headstock shape for all their guitar models, whether they are USA-made Core, S2, or import SE guitars. They even added the Paul Reed Smith signature to the logo of all models back in 2017. Fender, of course, has used the same headstock shape on all its models, including Squier instruments.
Gibson CMO Cesar Gueikian was the man who originally suggested last year that the new Epiphone headstock shape would come more in line with Gibson’s. Tell us what you think below, as I would be interested to know what players around the world feel about this latest Epiphone announcement.