Gibson Announces Limited Edition Of Chuck Berry’s Favorite Guitar

The ES-355 has now been meticulously crafted by Gibson’s luthiers and craftspeople for fans to experience.

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Chuck Berry photo: Danny Clinch
Chuck Berry photo: Danny Clinch

Instrument brand Gibson has announced the release via its Gibson Custom Shop of the limited edition Chuck Berry 1978 ES-355 model in wine red.

The rock’n’roll pioneer was always accompanied on stage by his Gibson guitars, and the ES-355, his particular favorite, has now been meticulously crafted for fans to experience. It’s now available worldwide at www.gibson.com.

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“Of all the guitars my dad played, the 1978 ES-355 by far was his go-to,” says Berry’s son, Charles Berry Jr. “The guitar traveled the world with my dad for over 36 years. His last album Chuck and the new live album Chuck Berry: Live From Blueberry Hill were recorded with the Gibson Wine Red ES-355.”

The new album, recorded at the famous venue and landmark where Chuck played so many shows, will be released on December 17 on CD and digitally by Dualtone. A vinyl edition will follow on April 15. Watch the tribute to Chuck featuring, and voiced by, Charles Jr. and filmed at the St. Louis venue, here.

“It’s a real road warrior and Gibson has done a brilliant job making this run of excellent big bodies,” says Charles Jr. “Like his original, these new ones resonate to the point you can actually feel them singing. It’s a True Tone MONSTER! Tom Murphy’s mad scientists in the Murphy Lab have aged them wonderfully. Put on the Captain’s hat, attach the conduit connector (if you dare), turn it up to 11 and rip!”

Gibson Custom Shop has ensured that every aspect of construction and appointments in the model is historically correct. These include aged gold hardware, a Maestro Vibrola, Grover tuners, a Varitone switch, and a classic split diamond headstock inlay. The striking Wine Red finish features Murphy Lab custom aging for added authenticity.

In this limited edition, only 100 Chuck Berry 1970s ES-355 guitars will be hand-made by Gibson’s luthiers and craftspeople. The manufacturer has gone to great lengths to source Chuck’s favorite and familiar captain’s hat, which he wore on and off stage. A replica of the hat is included in the custom case, along with the innovative finger holder, an electrical conduit strap, which allowed him to play his ES-355 over and behind his head.

Listen to uDiscover Music’s Chuck Berry Best Of playlist. 

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