Gibson ES-335

Gibson ES-335

Infobox Guitar model|title=Gibson ES-335

period=1958 — present
woodbody=maple (laminated); usually maple center block
woodneck=mahogany on most models in most periods; sometimes maple
woodfingerboard=rosewood on most models, ebony on some
pickups=2 Humbuckers

The Gibson ES-335 was the world's first commercial semi-hollowbody electric guitar, released by Gibson Guitar Corporation in 1958. It is neither hollow nor solid; instead, a solid wood block runs through the center of its body, but the sides are hollow, sporting violin-style f-holes. [] The "ES" in the ES series stand for "electric spanish."


Before 1952 Gibson produced only hollow body guitars, which are prone to feedback when amplified loudly. That year saw the introduction of their first solid body, the Gibson Les Paul, based on Les Paul's experiment, "The Log," which was merely a fence post with a neck, hardware, and pickup attached. By 1958 Gibson was making a few solid body models which had much lower feedback and better sustain, but lacked the darker, warmer tone and unamplified volume of hollow bodies. The ES-335 is an attempt to find a middle ground: a warmer tone than a solid body with almost as little feedback. Though semi-hollow bodies like the ES-335 are essentially a compromise of earlier designs, for the same reason they are extremely flexible as evidenced by the ES-335's popularity in a wide range of music, including blues, jazz, and rock.

Models and variations

The 335 was an important landmark in electric instrument technology. Its innovative body design was complemented by a slim, comfortable neck with excellent access to the upper frets. At a basic price of $267.50 it quickly became a best-seller, and has been in continuous production since 1958.

Some models feature a coil tap switch, which allows the humbuckers to produce a "single-coil" sound. The ES-335 Pro, ES 335 td CRS and CRR models were equipped with Gibson "Dirty Fingers" humbuckers, which had a significantly higher output than the standard pickups.

The CS-336 is a scaled down, sleeker body type variant of the ES-335 that has become quite popular. The CS-336 is an improvement on the ES-335 but also is so similar in many respects to its larger cousins that it is an essential variant of the 335 family. It has a smaller body and is not quite as neck heavy, while maintaining most of the essential features of the ES-335.

Trini Lopez Standard

The Trini Lopez Standard, manufactured 1964-1970, was based on the ES-335. It had narrow diamond-shaped soundholes replacing the f-holes, a firebird style headstock with all the tuners on one side, and slashed-diamond inlays reminiscent of the "slash cuts" used by Rickenbacker on its American semi-hollowbody models. Players of the Trini Lopez model include Noel Gallagher and Dave Grohl, circa "In Your Honor". A variant of the Trini Lopez model has recently been reintroduced by Gibson as part of the inspired by series, now called the DG-335, inspired by Dave Grohl. []

Tom DeLonge Signature

Infobox Guitar model|title=Gibson Tom DeLonge Signature ES-333

manufacturer=Gibson Guitar Corporation
woodbody=Maple or Poplar
woodfingerboard=Rosewood Fingerboard
pickups= 1 Gibson Dirty Fingers humbucker
bridge= Nashville TOM bridge, stopbar tailpiece
colors=Brown with cream stripes(only one available for purchase), Black with black stripes, Cream with black stripes, White with black stripes

The Gibson Tom DeLonge Signature ES-333 is the signature guitar of Tom DeLonge with a Gibson Dirty Fingers humbucker in the bridge pickup position. This is used to create the distorted signature sound of DeLonge's former band blink-182 and his current band, Angels & Airwaves.

DeLonge has also been seen with other versions of this guitar. All have black stripes (except for the brown version) and the colors include white, cream, black, and of course his brown with cream stripes. [ [ Gibson Electric Guitars: Online Electric and Bass Guitar Lessons, Les Paul and SG Electric Guitar Music and Tabs ] ]


The ES-355TD (Thin Line, Dual Pick-up)was at the top of Gibson's range of thin line semi-acoustic guitars. It was manufactured from 1958 until 1982. [] , fitted with (SV). The headstock had a split diamond block inlay rather the smaller inlay on the 335, in addition to a binding. The fingerboard inlay are blocks, inlaid on the first position of the fretboard. Binding was applied to the headstock, the fretboard and both the front and the back of the body.

The ES-355 was available with a Vibrola tremolo unit or a Bigsby vibrato tailpiece. It had also been offered with stereo output and "Varitone" tone filter circuitry. [Bacon, Tony "The Ultimate Guitar Book" p. 140 Dorling Kindersley Limited, 1991 ISBN 0-86318-640-8] When fitted with the optional stereo wiring and Varitone, the model was known as the ES-355TD-SV. The stereo wiring provided both stereo and mono connections, with two output jacks on the lower bout. The Varitone circuitry featured a six-position switch that adds capacitors of different value to the circuit. The capacitors act as a notch filter, such that each position on the switch shifts the center of the notch from higher to lower frequencies. [ Varitone] The ES-355 was widely used by blues musician B. B. King, who has been featured in Gibson publicity for the model from the 1960s onwards. Chuck Berry used one in the 1960s and 1970's, replacing his earlier Gibson ES-345. Many other guitarists have also used the model.


B. B. King was one of the first well-known guitarists to make the ES-345 his main guitar, having done so shortly after the model was introduced. His endorsement with Gibson began in 1980. In 1981, Gibson launched the B. B. King Lucille, a B. B. King signature model based on the ES-345TD-SV. [] It has the optional stereo wiring and Varitone circuitry as standard. [] It differs from the ES-345 as follows:
* The wood used to make the Lucille's neck is maple instead of mahogany. The maple neck makes for a somewhat brighter attack.
* The "split-diamond" custom headstock inlay on the ES-355 is replaced on the Lucille by the word "Lucille" in script.
* The Lucille has no F-holes on its top.

The Lucille effectively replaced the ES-345, which was discontinued a year after the Lucille was launched. Today the ES-345 is available as a reissue, as is its counterpart the ES-355 (these two are often confused). The difference between the two is however very noticeable. The 345 is a slightly larger version Fact|date=October 2007 of the 335 which also has a Varitone switch (a parametric equalizer with 5 presets). A 345 was given by Gibson, among other guitars, as a gift to Jimi Hendrix shortly before his death in 1970.


Other models based on the 335 include the ES-333 (equipped with a 490R/498T pickup combination, rear access panel for electronics, and is sans a pickguard), ES-340 (the toggle switch has settings of pickups in-phase, pickups out-of-phase, and standby), ES-345 (wired for stereo capabilities), the ES-347 (includes a coil tap, block markers on an ebony fretboard, fine tuning tailpiece and, on earlier models, a brass nut), and the EB-2 electric bass. Although the ES-330 resembles the 335, it is actually fully hollow (as opposed to semi-hollow) and features two P-90 pickups (as opposed to 2 humbucking pickups).

The Gibson Custom Shop has offered many variations of the ES-335. Recent years have seen period-accurate reissues of both dot and block-inlaid 335's, as well as a limited run of 250 replicas of the guitar Eric Clapton used while playing with the band Cream. These were commissioned by the Guitar Center company after buying the guitar for $847,500 at a charity auction in June 2004. Other signature models include the heavily customized Alvin Lee "Big Red" 335.

Another recent variation of the original design is the CS-336, a smaller version of the ES-335. The back and sides of this guitar are constructed from a single piece of carved mahogany and the reduced size is closer to that of a Gibson Les Paul. The Gibson Custon Shop produced a variant of the CS-336, the KS-336, which was a signature model produced in consultation with actor Kiefer Sutherland. Also available is the CS-356, with gold-plated hardware and multiple binding on the body, neck and headstock. These models are highly praised but the high prices led many people to call for a regular production model. These calls were answered in 2007 with the introduction of the ES-339; a guitar the size of a CS336 but with the laminate construction of the ES-335.

Gibson also markets a much less expensive version of the ES-335 under its Epiphone brand, called the "Dot" (referring to its dot-style inlay). Other Epiphone semi-hollowbody-style models include the Sheraton, the Riviera and the Dot Studio, though some of those are modeled after other guitars in the ES series.

Other ES-335 players


External links

* [ ES-335] , from Gibson's website

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