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Showing posts with the label Bill Lawrence

1974 Gibson USA Model S-1

The big guitar manufacturers all underwent a tumultuous period in the mid-1970s. I was a high school student during that period, but I had an after-school job teaching guitar in a music store. I got to see firsthand the guitars of that period and the adjustments they had to make to compete in those times. Many of the guitar companies were bought up by huge multinational conglomerates. Fender was gobbled up by CBS. Gibson became part of Norlin. To these big companies, building musical instruments out of wood was just like building furniture. They tried to force the guitar manufacturers to adopt non-traditional methods of guitar making and cost-cutting measures. A lot of the guitars of the Seventies were junk as a result, but there were some unusual instruments that had a lot of personality. One of them was the Gibson S-1. Gibson wanted something with a strong single-coil sound that could compete with Fender, head-to-head. They got Bill Lawrence, famous pickup designer extraordin