Famous Blues Guitarists Playing Gibson. If you’ve ever wanted to play the guitar like the blues gods, you’ve probably considered buying a Gibson guitar. These guitars were the standard choice for blues guitarists like Muddy Waters, Robert Johnson, and Sister Rosetta Tharpe. But who are the other famous blues guitarists playing Gibson? Who was their main influence? And which ones are Gibson’s favorites today? Read on to discover which of the best blues guitarists played Gibson guitars and why they chose them.
Best blues guitarists playing Gibson
Whether you are a musician looking for a new challenge, or you are a veteran, Muddy Waters playing the Gibson has earned him an honorary doctorate from the University of Chicago. The Grammy-winning guitarist has a rich history of playing blues. In addition to his Gibson playing, he played on numerous albums, won many W.C. Handy awards, and is a KBA Award winner. The project features 4 interviews with Muddy, as well as a picture of him on a porch in his cabin.
The guitar’s iconic slide style makes Muddy Waters’ name synonymous with the blues. Listen to his recordings from the 1940s and early 1950s to hear the intensity of his slide-playing style. Waters initially played in Open G tuning, and later switched to Standard tuning. He wore the slide on his pinky finger. Waters’ first guitar, an electric one, was ordered in 1932 after a friend, Alan Lomax, loaned it to him.
Muddy Waters is often called the father of today’s Chicago blues. This is a style of blues from Chicago strongly influenced by earlier idioms like Delta Blues. This revolves around the sounds of an amplified guitar and wailing harmonica. Like many mot blues guitarists listed in this list, he had arguably an important impact and his 1958 tour in England is credited with helping to create the British Blues revival in 1960.
Sister Rosetta Tharpe
The Gibson brand recently released a mini-documentary about the pioneering role of a woman who paved the way for rock ‘n’ roll and the blues. Narrated by Celisse Henderson, the film chronicles the life and music of Sister Rosetta Tharpe, who is often referred to as the ‘Godmother of rock’ and the ‘original soul sister’. Her blending of spiritual lyrics and electric guitar playing left a lasting impression on early rock musicians.
As a trailblazing woman who broke barriers, Sister Rosetta Tharpe played the Gibson SG with so much passion and skill. Her powerful voice and guitar pyrotechnics captivated audiences and paved the way for rock ‘n’ roll to grip new audiences. And her mastery of the Gibson SG guitar helped her to earn her nickname, the ‘Godmother of rock and roll’.
During her European tour in 1970, Sister Rosetta Tharpe began to experience numbness in her arms and legs. Due to diabetes, she had to have her leg amputated, but continued to perform on one leg until her death in 1973 from a stroke. The iconic guitarist is still remembered through her timeless recordings, which are available on YouTube. There is no shortage of tributes for her powerful voice.
The 23-year-old guitarist has been learning licks from his father and grandfather and is a huge fan of the Gibson ES-345 electric guitar. King has a guitar in his blood – his prized possession is a 1961 Martin O-18 acoustic. He nicknamed this instrument ‘Big Red’. Marcus King’s guitar is a Gibson ES-345, and he has a signature model.
In addition to his incredible guitar-playing skills, Marcus King is a prolific songwriter. He’s been writing and performing songs for almost half of his life and has been touring with his band for years. The group he performs with includes bass player Stephen Campbell, drummer Jack Ryan, trumpeter Justin Johnson, and keyboard player Dane Farnsworth. The guitar player was born to play in the family, and his father was a local blues hero.
In addition to his collaboration with Gibson, King is a member of MyMusicRX, a charity that provides free music lessons to children in hospitals. By donating to MyMusicRx, Marcus King will have a chance to win a brand-new guitar. Also, fans who donate to MyMusicRx will receive one year of interactive guitar lessons. That’s a pretty sweet deal!
B. King was born on a Mississippi plantation, with the band recording in 1940. His trademark styling influenced influences like T-Bone Walker and Blind Lemon Jefferson. This was his cousin who also taught him blues music and how to play the guitar. His career began with playing at street corner shops for change, and eventually, he recorded more than 50 albums. The singer sang vocal parts of his music but the guitar played was a popular one for complexity. Many of his later work was influenced.
BB King is a blues legend and one of the most prolific musicians on the blues circuit. He has influenced generations of guitarists with his deep, rich tone and tight riffs. And it’s no secret that he plays primarily Gibson guitars.
In honor of BB King, Gibson has announced that it will be re-releasing the guitar he owns: the Lucille. It was originally a one-of-a-kind instrument owned by the famed bluesman. The Gibson ES-355 is a semi-hollow body electric that was the instrument of choice for King for over fifty years. Since 1982, various variations of the guitar have been produced. These instruments have the same ebony/cherry color combo as the original model, and they share many of the same features as the Lucille.
King was one of the most successful bluesmen and best blues guitarists of all time, and his “Lucille” electric guitar helped establish the genre. However, he was not the only musician to use a Gibson guitar. Albert King, another famous bluesman, also controlled the sound of his guitars and inspired countless to play the 6-string riffs he played. As such, his guitar became a cult item.
BB King and Lucille were inseparable. From 2005 to 2015, the two appeared on stage together. When they performed, King referred to his guitar as his “magical wand” that was able to “speak for me.”
BB King’s guitar is one of the most iconic instruments in the history of the blues. Not only was it an iconic instrument, but it was also the name of a song. One of his best-known tunes is called “Lucille,” and it is a slow-burning 12-bar blues.
BB King also appeared in a Gibson advertisement. A 1972 advertisement features the renowned guitarist. At the top of the page, he explains that his guitar is his “magic wand” that can “speak for me.” The video shows the musician playing a walnut ES335TDSV.
King was known for his use of the ES-355, but he was not the only famous guitarist to play a Gibson. Other bluesmen of the time used the ES-175 and ES-5. They had a laminate construction with a sharp single cutaway. While the ES-355 was the most popular guitar for a bluesman, the ES-175 was a favorite among jazz players.
BB King was a prolific bluesman, who played over 300 shows a year in the mid-1950s. Though his guitar collection consisted of several different models, his signature Gibson ES-355 was the one he preferred. That guitar is now in the Gibson Custom Shop. Currently, Gibson is working on ways to honor the bluesman. This includes releasing a limited edition Lucille guitar. Ultimately, Gibson and King’s families will decide which option is best for the storied guitar.
Although the Gibson ES-355 is the most widely recognized instrument of King’s career, there is no doubt that his guitar, the Lucille, has a place in the pantheon of blues guitars. Whether or not you own a Gibson guitar, you can experience the deep, rich sound of B.B. King by listening to his songs.
Elmore James is arguably one of the blues guitar players to have ever played the guitar. Not only did he pioneer the slide, and electrify the Delta Blues scene, but his music also influenced many of the rock and roll greats of the 1960s and 1970s.
In his early years, Elmore James was playing the blues with a single-string instrument, but by the time he was 18, he had already jumped on the electric bandwagon. He continued to improve his singing and guitar skills and even played with Robert Johnson and Rice Miller for a period. Then, he had his own band. But he wasn’t able to record his music. This left his influence intact. Until his death, he never was able to rediscover his talent.
His most important professional relationship was with Rice Miller. During this period, he performed with the blues legend Sonny Boy Williamson II.
Before Williamson came into James’ orbit, he had been playing the Delta Blues for a long time. The two men played together for several years, and they were part of the Trumpet Recordings sessions in 1951. It was during this time that Elmore became acquainted with slide guitar, and the two soon began to experiment with pickups over the soundhole.
When Elmore was a teenager, he learned to play the slide from the Delta Blues legend, Robert Johnson. Later, he became the first electric blues guitarist. As he grew older, he installed two DeArmond pickups in his acoustic guitar and drove it into a driven valve amplifier.
Elmore grew up in the delta region of the southern United States, and his music reflected the delta’s tradition of poverty. However, he still had the confidence to put his name on the cover of a recording. After this, he performed covers that were fifteen minutes or longer. At the same time, he began to play with electrics, and he experimented with pickups over the soundhole.
His earliest recordings were done with a Gibson J-200, but later he used Gibson J-185s, Martin D-18s, and even a Gibson J-45. In addition, he played a Gibson L-0 and a Gibson LG-2, which he later re-stringed to a 6-string.
He also played on a variety of Harmony 12-strings, such as the Harmony Stella, Harmony Stella Dreadnaught, and the Harmony Stella Sovereign. Some of his friends were Brownie McGhee and Will Shade, who played National Triolians, Stellas, and National Duolians.
Jimi Hendrix, meanwhile, played his guitar with a Gibson TwoTone model GA-30. He had two pickups and may have had a Magnatone amplifier, but there’s not much known about his gear.
He had a tree of life headstock and two Dearmond pickups. There’s also a pickup closer to the bridge, and a vol./tone control box hanging from the bridge. Lastly, his amplifier was a 50s Magnatone.
Although not as well-known as his more famous peers, Elmore James shaped the history of the blues. Few musicians were able to capture the spirit of rock and roll like James.
During his lifetime, Albert King played a lot of guitars. He played with a wide range of influences. His style of playing helped shape the blues and electric guitar. As a result, his music has been embraced by several generations of guitarists. In fact, Albert King was considered to be one of the top influencers in the electric guitar world.
King played with a great deal of soul and imagination. He was a member of a gospel guitar group and a blues-folk band. Throughout his career, he toured extensively. Most of his shows were in smaller venues. However, he did play the Fillmore West at least once in the late ’60s. At the time, he was also a part of the band Cream, which released the song “Born Under a Bad Sign”.
Despite his reputation for a fiery temperament, Albert King was a versatile player. He played with a variety of amps during his career. One of his favorite amplifiers was a Roland JC-120. Another was a Fender Dual Showman. But in his later years, he used only an MXR Phase 90.
It is important to note that King had three different guitars during his career. His first was a cigar box guitar made by Albert. Afterward, he had a bespoke made Gibson V built by Tom Holmes.
King’s 1958 Gibson Flying V was considered to be his best guitar. This guitar was used for most of his recordings and was named the Lucille Ball. After being stolen, it was recovered. The guitar was tuned C, F, C, F, A, D.
Besides the Gibson Flying V, King also owned a Guild acoustic guitar. He often paired this guitar with a Gibson Humbucker pick-up. When he was younger, he played guitar with his dad, a church guitarist. And although he played many styles of guitar, he always loved the blues.
Albert King was born in 1923. He lived in Forrest City, Arkansas. Earlier in his life, he was a farmer. In the early 1950s, he moved to Indiana. Later in the Sixties, he signed with Stax Records, a major record label.
Before his time with Stax, King was a member of the gospel guitar group Little Milton’s Bobbins. They caught the attention of another record label. Several recordings came out on the label.
King was a left-handed guitarist. As a left-hander, he benefited from a “lefty advantage” when it came to bending notes. Unlike most right-handed guitarists, King was able to bend notes up to four tones. Moreover, he was a master of two-string bends. While most guitarists play notes with their fingers, King preferred playing the guitar with his thumb and index finger.
King’s signature tune is “Born Under a Bad Sign,” and it has been covered by numerous artists. Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Mike Bloomfield, and Duane Allman are just a few of the others who have cited his song as a favorite.
Albert King was a pioneer of electric blues. Although he died at the age of 53, his music influenced a generation of guitarists.
Buddy Guy is a Lettsworth native from Louisiana who is considered the world’s 100 most influential guitarist. Guy began performing public performances in the 1950s before arriving in Chicago in the fall of 1957. While living in Chicago he is inspired by another blues singer, muddy water. Guy received his first record contract in 1958 in which he faced Sam Magic and Otis Rush. Guy’s musical performances and work led him into the Halls of Fame. His work on Blues music has been recognized eight times by Grammys.
Buddy Guy was born in Lettsworth, Louisiana. He is a sharecropper’s son and played his first guitar when he was seven. In 1958, Buddy won a guitar contest with Magic Sam and Otis Rush. This made him a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. His first single, Sit and Cry (the Blues), was released that year.
The Fender Stratocaster is the guitar that Buddy plays and has become one of the most iconic blues guitars of all time. He has also had several albums featuring the instrument. A couple of his best-known songs are “Stone Crazy,” and “Born to Play Guitar.”
Buddy’s signature Martin guitar is made by Martin and features a cutaway jumbo body style with an ebony neck. Custom polka-dot inlays are found on the fretboard, along with a gold-plated pickup.
Buddy has been working with guitarist Gilbert Garza for the last six years. His latest albums have received Grammy awards. The Fender Custom Shop is currently working on a Buddy Guy Signature model. Initially, the guitar was released in a two-tone sunburst finish. It was later introduced in Polka Dot finishes.
Buddy is still a popular live performer, and his shows are a study of tension and sweet sweetness. When he plays a solo, his audience goes crazy. However, Guy’s playing was criticized by his early record label Chess Records, and he was forced to change his style to be more appealing to the public.
For a long time, Buddy used a Fender Bassman. But he later branched out to a Marshall JCM-800. Using a Wah pedal, he can play some of the Hendrix licks. He also uses a Furman PL-8 Power Conditioner, a Shumar UR4D Wireless Receiver, and a Radial JD-7 Injector.
He has been a major influence on many guitar players, including Jimi Hendrix. He has been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and has received many Grammy Awards. One of his albums, Damn Right I’ve Got the Blues, earned the Grammy for Best Blues Album in 1991.
He has appeared in the film Shine a Light, as well as in Martin Scorsese’s Rolling Stones concert film. Guy’s career began to wane in the late 1980s, but his recent albums revived his fortunes. Currently, he is touring with B.B. King and is scheduled to release another album in 2010.
Although his music has a long history, Buddy Guy is still not as widely recognized as other blues guitarists. Some of his famous influences include Jeff Beck and Jimmy Page. Nevertheless, Buddy is a true blues legend. With his soulful and groovy blues style, he has been able to sell out venues around the world. If you want to see Buddy perform, be sure to keep an eye out for his upcoming tour dates.
He has also been known to use the Fender Telecaster, as well as the Gibson Les Paul. Although he has played a variety of other guitars throughout his career, he is best known for his guitar sound, which is almost identical to the Stratocaster.
Stevie Ray Vaughan
Another popular name for the blue guitar is Stevie Ray Vaughan who grew up in Dallas Texas where he began learning the guitar. Initially, Vaughans struggled financially but his work caught the attention of Bowie. In the late 1980s, his first album was a forthcoming release. From then on his career started and he and his band got an Epic album deal. During a period under John Hammond’s leadership, the album reached 38th on the album charts. A second album was released gold in 1985.
Guitar legend Stevie Ray Vaughan is most often seen playing an electric guitar in videos, but he also used a battered, vintage Gibson acoustic guitar to provide the instrument with a mighty workout. The Dallas-born guitar player began playing at an early age and got his start by copying his older brother Jimmie. At age twelve, he began playing in semi-professional bands and dropped out of high school.
Vince Martell gifted Stevie with his first Gibson. He ordered the Main guitar for himself in 1979 when Stevie was still going by ‘Stevie Vaughan’. The guitar was made with a three-piece “neck-through-body” design, a two-piece maple body, an ebony neck, and a mother-of-pearl inlay.
Eddie Van Halen and Stevie Ray Vaughan did not read music, but they were masters of the instrument. They won piano competitions and had no formal training. They essentially played by ear and talent. And it shows! While most guitar players would be happy to buy a new guitar after learning to read the music, Stevie Ray Vaughan’s legacy will be cherished for decades to come.
Eddie Van Halen
If you have ever seen a photo of Eddie Van Halen playing a Gibson, you’ve probably wondered who made the guitar. It’s a good guess that he used a custom-built guitar. His guitars have a history that goes back to the early 1980s. In this case, the guitar was designed by Wayne Charvel, a legendary guitar builder. Eddie Van Halen used the EVH Destroyer, but it has changed a few things to become more like his signature guitar.
The guitar that Eddie Van Halen plays has a rich history. Wayne Charvel, a music industry veteran, was a major influence on Van Halen. As such, the guitarist’s EVH signature-model guitars reflect the essence of Van Halen himself. These guitars look and sound awesome, and they would certainly do justice to the 50,000 van Halen fans that come to see Van Halen play live.
Many people don’t realize that Eric Clapton is a legendary Blues guitarist, who played various Gibson guitar models throughout his career. Throughout his career, Clapton used different Gibson guitar models, including the Les Paul and Firebird models. His most famous Gibson guitar was the 1964 SG, which he painted in psychedelic patterns. It is now considered one of the most famous guitars in history. Find out more about Eric Clapton playing Gibson in this article.
Eric Clapton has been a major influence on musicians throughout the years. He has performed with various artists, including B.B. King and Frank Zappa, and has collaborated with Santana and other legendary musicians. Clapton has also worked with the likes of Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney, and Roger Waters. In addition to playing Gibson guitars, Clapton has also produced albums with Phil Collins, and was the main producer of “She’s Waiting.”
Many people are unaware of Clapton’s other albums. Fans are unaware of his collaboration with Blind Faith and Cream. They may not even be aware of the similarity between the two albums. However, this comparison is misleading. Clapton’s later albums are much different than the Cream and Blind Faith recordings, and they differ significantly in terms of style, intensity, and tone. This makes Clapton a legend among guitar players.
Another blues guitarist worth watching is Joe Bonamassa and by some considered one of the best blues guitarists, who starred in the 1980s when he started playing with B.B. King at age 12. He then released 15 albums for his label, and eleven were top chart hits. Bonamassa holds three Grammy Awards. In addition, he gathered over time an extensive collection of guitars and amps. In this room, he has a nickname – Bonaseum. Among the musicians influenced by him are Eric Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughan, and Mick Abraham.
Read more about Joe Bonamassa and Gibson’s guitars in this article.
Robert Johnson was a musician who performed songs like Sweet Home Chicago and Cross Road Blues. The humble beginning was a big part of my motivation to study blues music. He became a legend among Delta blues singers. Johnson’s music is intense, and expressive, and an excellent guitar player. His music style had a great influence on future musicians such as the Beatles and The Rolling Stones. To this day there is no record of his personal life or his career, though it is known that he released 11 songs during his life and one album posthumously.
Robert Johnson is one of the most influential blues musicians of all time. He set the standard for modern Blues. The music he crafted was incomparable, and his unique style and style of guitar playing influenced many later blues artists.
Robert was born in Hazelhurst, Mississippi on May 11, 1911. He was married to 16-year-old Virginia Travis in 1929. They had a baby, but she died in April 1930. She was buried with her daughter in Greenwood, Mississippi.
In the early 1900s, he played various guitars. Some of them were strung, and others were flat-tops. During his career, he recorded 29 songs. His style drew heavily from that of Isaiah “Ike” Zimmerman, who helped him learn his techniques.
Although the guitar he used for his recordings was unknown, there are some things we know for sure. His use of the Gibson L-1 flat-top acoustic is one. That instrument was introduced in 1926 and has a small, Honduran mahogany body with a 12-fret mahogany neck and AA-grade Sitka spruce top. It features a mother-of-pearl headstock and a period-correct Gibson logo. Several guitarists choose this Gibson model for blues playing, because of its midrange-focused sound.
Robert Johnson’s Gibson L-1 is in good condition. The guitar plays well and sounds authentic. This version also comes with a protective hard shell case. If you are looking for a guitar that can be passed down to your children, you may want to consider this Gibson. You will get your money’s worth, and it will be in great shape for years to come.
Another guitar that Johnson is associated with is the Kalamazoo KG-14, a type of flat-top guitar. This was an expensive prestige instrument during its heyday. When it was lost, it was almost brand new. One of the most intriguing facts about it is that it had a round soundhole in its 14-and-a-half-inch body. And, unlike the other models, the KG-14 had five dot markers on the back, making it a good choice for the record company.
As for the other instruments that were associated with Robert Johnson, the most significant one is the Gibson L-1. However, it is also possible that he had a few other stringed instruments as well. Possibly, he had a National Resonator with an added first string. Other possibilities include a Stella guitar. Or, he could have borrowed a KG-14 from a friend, or even been a vagabond musician like Johnson.
Although the Gibson L-1 flat-top acoustic was not the first guitar to carry the name Robert Johnson, it is widely considered to be the most notable. Even today, Gibson has created a reissue of this guitar in their signature line, which includes the L-1. These updated models are designed to be as good as possible for the player of today.
Although his legacy is not fully documented, his music and his guitars have been subject to much speculation. Some theorize that he used the L-1, and some even say that it was the first guitar he ever played.
Although Blues music generally has a dark and sad theme, it is also filled with fiery guitar strings, rock vocals, and electrifying sounds. These are just a few of the guitarists who played Gibson. If you want to know more about these blues musicians, check out our list of famous blues guitarists and their guitars.
The blues guitar genre has shaped modern music in more ways than any other form. Jazz was shaped by the 12-bar blues and later inspired other genres. Many of the world’s greatest blues guitarists owe their unique style to the early greats of the genre. By incorporating their influences into their playing styles, these blues guitar players have continued to evolve in their craft and stay true to the spirit of the genre.
Another example is Richard Hawley, the legendary guitarist who made his name with a single riff. Richard Hawley was influenced by his father’s blues playing, who played guitars with some of the most famous musicians of his generation. Duane Eddy and Eddie Cochran influenced him to pick up a Gretsch guitar. These guitars have become a staple in the blues genre.