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Charlie Starr and Gibson Launch Les Paul Junior

Charlie Starr and Gibson Launch Les Paul Junior
Photo by Gibson

The Blackberry Smoke guitarist unveils new Les Paul Junior, a tribute to his much-loved 1956 model made from digital scans of his original guitar.


Charlie Starr often uses a Les Paul Junior for studio recordings and live performances with his group Blackberry Smoke. Throughout his career, his affinity for the Les Paul Junior has contributed to his signature guitar tone and playing style, adding to the band’s unique sound. The Gibson Charlie Starr Les Paul Junior authentically reproduces Charlie’s go-to Junior. It features a mahogany neck with a 50s neck profile that was digitally scanned and replicated from Charlie's favorite Les Paul Junior, a custom-designed overwound P-90 pickup, and an adjustable Wraparound bridge with locking studs. It comes packed in a Historic Les Paul Junior “Gator Skin” hardshell case and includes a Charlie Starr Signature Ceramic Slide and Hey Ya’ll sticker, complete with Charlie's original misspelling. The Gibson Charlie Starr Les Paul Junior is available in Dark Walnut and Ebony, and only 250 guitars will be made in each color.

Photob by Gibson

Hailing from Lanett, AL, Charlie Starr, the lead vocalist, and guitarist for the Southern rock band Blackberry Smoke was born into a musical family. His grandfather was in a well-known gospel band, his grandmother played mandolin and piano and his father, an accomplished guitarist, introduced him to the instrument that would lead to his career in music.

Playing guitar became one of Starr's passions early in life, in addition to writing and singing. In December 2017, Starr was named as one of Music Radar's top 23 guitarists, a list that includes “rock guitar gods” including Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones, Slash of Guns N’ Roses, and Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top, among others.

The critically acclaimed Georgia-based band Blackberry Smoke, which features Starr, Brandon Still, guitarist/vocalist Paul Jackson, bassist/vocalist Richard Turner and the late drummer Brit Turner has amassed a loyal fanbase over the past two decades. The group’s last five full-length albums have achieved great chart success, including 2021’s You Hear Georgia, which reached #1 on Billboard's Americana/Folk Albums chart.

Charlie Starr on Les Paul Juniors, Southern Rock Sound

The Charlie Starr Les Paul Junior from Gibson is now available worldwide at authorized Gibson dealers and on www.gibson.com.

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Photo by Anna Azarov

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Donner andThird Man Hardware’s $99, three-in-one analog distortion, phaser, and delay honors Jack White’s budget gear roots.

Compact. Light. Fun. Dirt cheap. Many cool sounds that make this pedal a viable option for traveling pros.

Phaser level control not much use below 1 o’clock. Repeats are bright for an analog delay. Greater range of low-gain sounds would be nice.

$99

Donner X Third Man Triple Threat
thirdmanrecords.com

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A huge part of the early White Stripes mystique, sound, ethos, and identity was tied to guitars and amps that, at the time, you could luck into for cheap at a garage sale. These days, it’s harder to score a Crestwood Astral II, or Silvertone Twin Twelve with a part-time job in the ice cream shop. Back in the late ’90s, though, they were a source of raw, nasty sounds for less than a new, more generic guitar or amp.

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