Introduced in 1959, the Gibson Melody Maker was conceived as an entry-level electric guitar for beginners or players on a budget. Since then, the Melody Maker has seen many iterations, but each is recognizable by distinct features that keep costs low but still maintain the quality you’d expect. The Melody Maker’s slim and flat mahogany body is cheaper to produce, and its drop-in pickguard design cuts down on assembly time considerably. The result is a USA-made instrument with the tone and quality you’d expect at a player’s price. When you pick one up, it’s no surprise the Melody Maker has found a home across a variety of genres, delivering rich Gibson sound when a simple, working-man’s instrument fits the bill just fine.
The Gibson Melody Maker Special is perhaps one of the more interesting—and rare—iterations of the Melody Maker. While most Melody Makers sport a single pickup, the Melody Maker Special has two pickups and a three-way switch. On top of that, those two pickups are Alnico V P-90s instead of the cheap single-coils you’ll see on many Melody Makers. Also, this one has the iconic Gibson flared headstock instead of the thin student-model design.
This 2011 Gibson Melody Maker Special is in Very Good condition. It shows some expected play wear, and thanks to its thin TV Yellow finish, the wear gives it the mojo of a well-loved instrument. Also, this one features a few upgrades. In place of the simple wraparound stop-bar bridge (which never allows for proper intonation), this one was a fully-intonatable Stewart McDonald Wraparound bridge. This bridge also has more mass than the original stop-bar, so in addition to greatly improving the intonation, it also adds to the sustain and dynamics of the instrument. Also, the cheap Gibson-branded tuners have been upgraded to TonePros Kluson tuning machines.
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