Thursday, January 12, 2006

GuitArt - The Guitar Calendar - "Flash Gordon"


Flash Gordon:
This is the world-famous, instantly recognizable Gibson Flying V model. This one has the famous faded cherry finish and ebony fingerboard with moon inlays. Like a rocketship to the moon.

This was one of two guitar models in the 1958 Moderne series from Gibson. Obviously very futuristic and ultra-modern for the time. It later became a blues legend, then a rock legend. A highly stylized unforgettable shape, it just reminds me of the Flash Gordon/Buck Rogers type of movies. Simple, stylized rocket ships and SF heros saving the Earth from Ming The Merciless. So I call this one Flash Gordon because of that and because it is a pretty flashy style. Everyone notices when you pull this one out to play.

Surprisingly, despite the dramatic styling, this guitar is not just about the looks or the shape. It is an extremely playable and great-sounding guitar. In fact, the lack of an upper or lower bout, means you have very easy, unobstructed access to the upper frets. Also, the guitar is a lot lighter than I expected. I always saw these big Flying V bodies and thought they must be very heavy, but in fact, it is quite light. "Tossable", even.

There are many copies of this guitar by other makes from Jackson to Dean to Ibanez, and of course there is a less expensive Epiphone model of this from Gibson, but this is the original Gibson. I bought both the Explorer and the Flying V with the full honest intention of reselling them for a profit on eBay. But once I got them, and once I played them and heard them, I just COULDN’T bring myself to part with them. They are both in perfect condition, play great and sound great. Excellent examples of Gibson classic models. I acquired this one in spring of 2005.

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