Gibson Firebird (1995) $1500

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We acquired this guitar at a recent vintage show hoping it would sound as good as our favorite early ’90sFirebird, a much-favored and very versatile instrument around the shop that we sold in a moment of lapsed judgment.

Upon plugging the new arrival into several of the Aardvark house amps, including a Gibson Skylark and a Fender Tremloux, we were pleased but not surprised by the guitar’s dynamic voice, which we would characterize as prototypically Firebird – imagine an equal mixture of Gibson girth and Fender clarity, and you’ll get the idea.

Besides looking cool, with its elegant extended headstock and attractive sunburst finish, this guitar provides a broad tonal range. Due to its large body and sandwich of walnut and mahogany as the body woods, as well as the stock mini humbuckers, the guitar produces punchy but subtle tonal hues. Paired with an overdrive pedal, it will do stand its ground on swaggering Texas blues. With a clean (or slightly compressed) tone, it will do justice swampy to Cajun soul. Like our now-departed blonde Firebird, this is a guitar that will reward diligent sonic experimentation.

Evidence of a moved rear strap button (since moved back), else very good. With original Gibson logo case. $1500

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We acquired this guitar at a recent vintage show hoping it would sound as good as our favorite early ’90sFirebird, a much-favored and very versatile instrument around the shop that we sold in a moment of lapsed judgment.

Upon plugging the new arrival into several of the Aardvark house amps, including a Gibson Skylark and a Fender Tremloux, we were pleased but not surprised by the guitar’s dynamic voice, which we would characterize as prototypically Firebird – imagine an equal mixture of Gibson girth and Fender clarity, and you’ll get the idea.

Besides looking cool, with its elegant extended headstock and attractive sunburst finish, this guitar provides a broad tonal range. Due to its large body and sandwich of walnut and mahogany as the body woods, as well as the stock mini humbuckers, the guitar produces punchy but subtle tonal hues. Paired with an overdrive pedal, it will do stand its ground on swaggering Texas blues. With a clean (or slightly compressed) tone, it will do justice swampy to Cajun soul. Like our now-departed blonde Firebird, this is a guitar that will reward diligent sonic experimentation.

Evidence of a moved rear strap button (since moved back), else very good. With original Gibson logo case. $1500