1939 Gibson Cromwell L50 – £999
NEW ARRIVAL During the Great Depression, Gibson realised that most people couldn’t afford their guitars, so they made more affordable versions under different names – Kalamazoo being the best known, but also Cromwell, Recording King, Fascinator and Carson Robison. These guitars were built to a slightly lower specification using lesser quality tone woods and lighter bracing. Now skip forward 80 odd years and a lot of these guitars are just fantastic, because the lighter build allows them to resonate more than their Gibson equivalents. This Cromwell archtop is the equivalent of a Gibson L50, with a Spruce top and Mahogany back and sides, and 16” wide body. The tone is voiced beautifully for blues, jazz and swing, has a very comfortable V profile neck, and a great playing action all the way along the fingerboard. For an 82 year old guitar, it’s in excellent condition, with just one repaired split next to the bass side F hole. The headstock now has a script Gibson logo which, although not original, has been done very tastefully. This guitar looks, feels and sounds great, and has the kind of vintage vibe that is impossible to replicate in a reissue. It has a bridge pickup fitted with a jack socket mounted alongside the tailpiece, and works well. The guitar comes in a non original hard case.