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Gibson USA Limited Run Series Tribal Explorer

Ever since its introduction in 1958, the Gibson Explorer has been one of rock and roll’s most defining symbols. In fact, so radical a concept was its design that the Explorer lasted only a few years before succumbing to the other, more popular Gibson models of the day. But all of this changed when hard rock and heavy metal hit the scene in the late ’60s and early ’70s, and the Explorer became the ultimate guitar to be seen with. Since then, the Explorer has been a total declaration of crushing rock action. It has also become the beloved instrument to a wide range of guitar stars from all genres, including Eric Clapton and U2’s The Edge. Gibson is now proud to introduce the latest chapter in the life of the Explorer – the Tribal Explorer, part of Gibson USA’s 2009 Limited Run Series of guitars. Available April 1, 2009, the Tribal Explorer takes the classic Explorer format to the next level. It is an instrument honed for the contemporary rock and shred player, and it will only be produced in a strictly limited run of 350 guitars. It is destined to appeal to the collector just as much as the player.

A New Look For A Legend

The original Explorer is a tough act to follow, but the Tribal Explorer meets the challenge and passes the test with added edge and attitude. A solid mahogany body and neck are dressed in a custom white finish. On the body is the Tribal Explorer’s signature design – an exclusive black Tribal pattern outline that sets it apart from any Explorer before it. Its unbound ebony fingerboard with acrylic dot inlays provides an austere contrast, while black chrome hardware and white pickup mounting rings complete the package.

Hardware To Match The Look

The Tribal Explorer updates the original Explorer’s iconic lines with a sizzling new power train designed to offer the muscle and versatility demanded by the 21st century rocker. A pair of Gibson’s own uncovered ceramic-magnet humbucking pickups — a 496R in the neck and a 500T in the bridge — maximize output and sustain while retaining clarity and string definition. Through a clean channel, they offer thumping lows and sweet highs. Plugged into a high-gain amp, however, the pickups really come into their own, yielding eviscerating midrange and sizzling lead tones, and nearly endless sustain when desired.

A Little Added Hardware

The Tribal Explorer adds an extra dimension to the Explorer’s ability to rock with a factory mounted Kahler Tremolo system. The ultimate tailpiece for anything from deep divebombing to subtle vibrato effects, the Kahler is partnered with a black graphite nut and locking Grover kidney tuners to get it all right back to pitch, however extreme your action.

A Very Limited Run

Whether you’re a player seeking a professional rock and roll guitar that’s totally uncompromised in both looks and performance, or a collector in search of that ultimate trophy piece, the new 2009 Limited Run Series Tribal Explorer from Gibson USA is an axe worth grinding. And be to get one quick, because they won’t last long. Remember, each 2009 Limited Run Series model is restricted to just 350 guitars, so contact your authorized Gibson dealer today. Each comes with a black Gibson hardshell case and a special Limited Run Series certificate of authenticity.


  • The Gibson Logo
  • Angled Headstock with Locking Grover Mini Tuners
  • Adjustable Truss Rod
  • The Tribal Explorer Neck Profile
  • 22-Fret Ebony Fingerboard
  • Nickel and Silver Alloy Fret Wire
  • Figured Acrylic Dot Inlays
  • Set-Neck Construction
  • Solid Mahogany Body
  • Gibson’s 496R and 500T Pickups
  • Kahler 2215K Tremolo System in Black Chrome
  • Nitrocellulose Finish