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Is this a 'burst?

vintage58

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Apr 13, 2003
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There's a thread going on at one of the PRS forums, about one of Howard Leese's Les Pauls. I realize that Howard at one time was a 'burst owner (and may still be one), but I have to ask — is the guitar shown at the beginning of the below-linked thread, a real 1959 'burst, as the thread starter indicates later in the thread? Methinks not.... but in case someone here actually knows this specific guitar, I just wanted to check. Here is the thread:


.......http://forums.birdsandmoons.com/forum/showthread.php?t=86874
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vintage58

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I would have to agree. My first thought when I saw that photo was, why is everyone there ooh-ing and ah-ing over a very forgettable-looking reissue. But then I read further into the thread, that the guitar was being presented as a real 'burst. I was like, you gotta be kidding....
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DHBucker

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Jul 18, 2007
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The maple top doesn't look "correct" to me...let alone the finer details that I'm not qualified to comment on. We need the Ganz,CD, and TW to weigh in here, but they may feel this isn't worth their time.
 
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vintage58

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Yeah, truly. :hee

Well, I made the (apparent) mistake of posting a reply to that thread, to the effect that I don't think that that guitar is a 'burst. So far, that sentiment has met with ridicule and hostility....
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Tom Wittrock

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Aug 2, 2001
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My first thoughts are: No.
The only possibility [and it's a stretch] is a reworked Bigsby-only Burst with the tailpiece poorly placed, but I seriuosly doubt that without more evidence.

Does anyone have the serial number photo or the cavity shots [especially the neck pup rout]?
 

58burst

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All the plastic that is at all identifiable is wrong, including the inlays. Not a burst, unless it's a re-topped, renecked, parted-out one...:lol
 

27sauce

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Yeah, truly. :hee

Well, I made the (apparent) mistake of posting a reply to that thread, to the effect that I don't think that that guitar is a 'burst. So far, that sentiment has met with ridicule and hostility....
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I did the same thing when that pic popped up on TGP...
 

vintage58

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FWIW, here are Howard's remarks about this guitar, as they appeared in a 2008 Vintage Guitar Magazine interview:
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VG: What about your 'burst?

HL: It’s a '58 with the pickup covers removed and zebra coils. I got it from a friend, another guitar collector, a player, but not a pro. He had a beautiful Les Paul collection, one of every kind, and a number of 'bursts. I traded a 1979 Dodge pickup truck for the 'burst and a '56 Les Paul Custom, the Black Beauty. We did the deal in 1983. The truck was already pretty old, but he really needed it — and I needed the 'burst! [laughs]..And, yes, he still has the truck.
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VG: It looks like it has changed tuners.

HL: Yeah, it has Grovers. But the frets are original. It plays easily. It was refinished; it was cherry red when I got it. It's still not right, so I’ll probably end up taking it to Scott Lentz.
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Also, here is another pic of the guitar (excerpted from the same Vintage Guitar Magazine article):
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leese-11.jpg

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Joe Desperado

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Jun 8, 2004
Messages
1,852
My R8 from 2001 looks identical to the one from the other forum. Same carmel color etc. The first thing I thought was that it looked like my guitar which of course is not a burst.

J
 

esmin

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Sep 9, 2008
Messages
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My R8 from 2001 looks identical to the one from the other forum. Same carmel color etc. The first thing I thought was that it looked like my guitar which of course is not a burst.

J

Was just going to say that it looks like the earlier "Butterscotch" color from the early 2000's.

Along with everything else on it.
 

DHBucker

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Looking at the photo again, the plastic has that pinkish/creme hue and that ain't vintage....
 

Wilko

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I'm very confident that it isn't a Burst.

Body shape, knob locations, inlay material, top wood type.

People assume (as in that PRS thread) that being handmade there was a lot of variation. That ain't exactly true. try telling a craftsman back then that he didn't match up his specs and measurements well. That thing would need to be a Bigsby guitar to have locations that bad.
 
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