Gibson is one of the most populair guitar manufacturers. The most seen guitarmodel is the Gibson Les Paul. There are several versions of the Les Paul like the studio, goldtop or robot version.
A lot of companies make Gibson guitarcopies, of course most do this with authorization. Example of these brands are Epiphone, Kramer, Valley arts, Tobias, Steinberger, and Kalamazoo. If you want to have a nice looking budget, but you don't have the money for a realy Gibson, then one of the copies might be just the thing you need.
Orville Gibson started making mandolins in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Orville made mandolins who were easier manufactable and who sounded better. In 1902 The Gibson Mandolin - Guitar Mfg.co was founded to market of instruments. His innovative look was responsible for many innovations in design and manufactering. In 1936 the first good selling electric guitar came on the market: the ES-150 As the result of the strong sales of the Fender companie, Gibson decided to make a solid-body guitar. The musician Les Paul was asked to sign a contract so they could use his name for a guitar. In 1952 they could finally release the Les Paul. In the late fifties, a number of inovations came with the new designs, such as the Gibson Explorer and the Fying V. In this period they also introduced the "humbucker" pickup. They Les Paul went through some redesigning and they gave it a new look. Les didn't care for the new body style and he made sure the Les Paul wasn't changed at all. Instead they named it Gibson SG. Nowadays the SG is very much used in hard rock and metal bands like AC/DC. Between 1974 and 1984 the production of Gibson guitars was moved from Kalamazoo to Nashville in an effort to reduce the costs associted with the high-wage, unionized workers in the North. Due some quality and money issues, things didn't go very well with Gibson, in 1986 the Gibson Guitar Corp. was bouth bey sir Juszkiewicz and sir Berryman and sir Zebrowski. The succes (and survival) of Gibson nowadays is largely attributed to this change in leaders. Currently Juszkiewecz and Berryman are still leading the company as CEO and president.
Gibson has made all kinds of guitars. There are so many that I can't even name them all, heres a link where you can see all the types: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gibson_Guitar_Corporation_product_list
The most popular are the Firebird, Les Paul, Melody Maker, SG, V-Factor (Flying V) and the X-plorer
-Firebird: This guitar has different versions, where you can choose the color, but also the number of pickups and other hardware. The Firebird was invented in the 1950s, but new versions and reissues have been release plenty of times.
As mentioned before, this is the most used/bought guitar from Gibson, it was invented in 1952. This guitar has various versions:
Junior (1954-1960) and TV (1955-1960)
1961 Les Paul SG
Renewed interest in the Les Paul models
Les Paul models in the Norlin era
Custom Shop models
Modern Les Pauls
Les Paul's guitar
Epiphone Les Pauls
Gibson Robot Guitar
Flying V or V-Factor:
The Flying V or V-factor was invented in the late fifties and used by players like Lonnie mack and Albert King. When it was first revealed, it struck musicians as a bit extreme and it didn't sell very well. It was discontinued. It wasn't until the sixties that it was reissued.
The Les Paul Robot is the latest model from Gibson. It uses revolutionary techniques in the tuning mechanism, The guitar can tune itself. To tune the guitar, what you do is to pull out the master control knob (MCK) and you strum the guitar. They tuning pegs will start moving, and when all the lights on the MCK are green, the guitar is in tune. Then the lights will turn blue and you click the MCK back in regular position and there you go! It's possible to turn the MCK in different directions, which will cause different tunings. The MCK can also help with changing of strings, or checking your bridge height for correcting intonation.
An instruction movie can be watched here: Robot video page
Many, Many artists have and still play on a Gibson.
Eric Clapton, who used an ES-335.
BB King, with his own Lucile.
Bob Dylan, who used different types of Gibson's.
Jimi Hendrix also used different models.
Bob Marley, Neil Young, Carlos Santana, Slash, Zakk Wylde, and loads more.
A complete list can be found here: full list
--Kaznie 16:57, 18 January 2008 (UTC)