Spotlight On the Gary Moore Signature Les Paul BFG
Gabriel J. Hernandez
It’s no coincidence that Gibson USA’s Gary Moore Signature Les Paul
guitar is a BFG ? perhaps the mightiest and most extreme Les Paul to ever leave a Gibson factory.
This guitar takes the raw, unrefined power of Gibson’s classic BFG and matches it with the look of Moore’s personal and legendary Les Paul Standards from the late 1950s, resulting in a beautifully radical Les Paul that embodies Moore’s iconic status amongst the world’s finest guitarists.
The Gary Moore Signature Les Paul BFG is a stripped-down version of the iconic Les Paul, featuring Gibson’s high-powered and uncovered Zebra Burstbucker 3 humbucker in the bridge, and a classic, screaming single-coil P-90 in the neck, all controlled by two volumes and one tone knob. The traditional toggle switch has been rewired to act as a kill switch, and a smaller toggle at the volume knobs controls pickup selection.
Rounding out this rock and roll machine is an unsanded plain maple top on an unfinished, chambered mahogany body, with a unique Lemon Burst finish similar to the faded appearance of Moore’s original Les Pauls. The neck is a perfectly matched one-piece mahogany neck with a ’50s rounded profile ? also just like Moore’s favorite original Les Pauls. There is no binding, no fretboard inlays and the hardware has a unique distressed look that magnifies the BFG’s distinct, barebones look. The Gary Moore Signature Les Paul BFG is an innovative powerhouse, and a true testament to one of rock and roll’s greatest living legends.
Have a closer look at some of the features of the Gary Moore Signature Les Paul BFG:
Surface Texture and Satin Nitrocellulose Lemon Burst Finish
In almost every respect, the Gary Moore Signature Les Paul BFG is not an ordinary Les Paul — including the surface and texture of the body and neck. The most powerful, radical Les Paul needed a raw look, so Gibson’s designers decided to leave the surface carving marks on the solid maple top and mahogany body—exactly as they appear when they emerge from the rough mill. The body of the Gary Moore Signature Les Paul BFG is then given a Lemon Burst finish that closely resembles the finish on Moore’s historic, original Les Pauls. The neck is also given its initial finish, then hand-sanded to yield its own unique worn appearance. A smooth coat of satin nitrocellulose is then applied over the entire guitar, insuring less interference with the natural vibration of the instrument — producing a purer tone — and allowing the wood to breathe and age naturally and properly over the course of its life.
Gibson's Burstbucker 3 and P-90
The Gary Moore Signature Les Paul BFG demanded a pickup configuration as radical as the man himself, and the pairing of Gibson’s Burstbucker 3 with the classic P-90 is as intense as it gets. The Burstbucker 3 arrived on the scene in 1990, and—like the Burstbucker 1 and 2—represents Gibson’s drive to capture and recreate the characteristics of the vintage “Patent Applied For” humbuckers of the late 1950s. On the shop floor of the original Gibson plant in Kalamazoo, Michigan, the earliest Gibson PAF humbuckers were wound using imprecise machines, resulting in pickups with varying degrees of output and tone. The Burstbucker line represents those variations, but with some modern appointments. The Burstbucker 3 provides historically accurate PAF tone with two slightly overwound coils, creating a raw, airy tone packed with enough punch to cut through any mix. The legendary P-90 black soapbar, introduced in the early 1950s, Gibson’s truly legendary singlecoil pickup, and offers the soulful, classic tone that only a P-90 can. It delivers more warmth than a standard singlecoil pickup, for high output and sweet treble response. Together, they are one of the most powerful pickup combinations on any Les Paul.