SOLD! - 1963 Gibson Les Paul Custom SG Polaris White Sideways Vibrola PAF
** Comes with the original 1963 "Conditional Sales Agreement"!! **
The price back then was a whopping $450 for the Les Paul Custom + $56 for the Faultless gold plush-lined case. It was paid for with a partial trade-in valued at $101.20, a downpayment of $56.94 and 24 installments of $17.15
This beauty was purchased in 1963 at Gridley Music Co. in the Gainesville Shopping Center at 1004 N. Main St. Gainesville FL, by then owned by the legendary Buster Lipham. Gridley Music Co. (later renamed Lipham Music) was a truly legendary store that supplied gear to music legends in the area for decades.
Val Lipham, Buster Lipham’s father, bought the store from C. Asbery Gridley in 1954 after meeting him at a trade show in Chicago. The family moved to Gainesville from west Texas. After a few years Buster Lipham took his father’s business and turned it into one of the biggest music stores in the South. In doing so he created a social space for a community of local and regional musicians, an informal meeting place. Buster, a very social and sociable man, did business and friendship with musicians in all genres
There's a teenage Tom Petty shopping there, Shot Jackson (co-inventor of the Sho-Bud steel guitar), there’s the Allman Brothers Band records At Fillmore East and Idlewild South that list Buster Lipham and Lipham Music in the “thanks to” album credits after he fronted the band $13,276 worth of gear on credit minus about $6,000 for trade-in equipment. Iron Butterfly signed an album for him, Bo Diddley gave him a red box-shaped guitar, there's Billy Joel and Ray Charles, whom he supplied with pianos during Gainesville appearances. Don Felder bought his gear there, as did Duane Allman. The list goes on and on.
With longtime franchises on all the major music brands, a personable business approach and generous credit payment plans, Buster made it possible for Gainesville musicians to be playing on top gear, as the photos of local bands from the ‘60s will attest. It was a time and a place to be a musician and during the ‘60s and ‘70s the place to shop was Lipham’s.
Anyway, back to the guitar!
This very nice 1963 Gibson Les Paul Custom weighs a little under 3.5Kg and is pretty much all original including a set of real PAF pickups, POTs, plastics, tuners, knobs and the Faultless gold plush-lined black pebble case.
The action on the sweet C-shape neck is super low and it plays just effortlessly... The frets have been replaced but the original frets are in the case and the new ones feel smooth.
When looking up close you can see it has 2 serial numbers: 95710, which is the original 1963 5-number serial, and 111416 which is also an original 1963 serial number and which is on the signed Sales Agreement. This is why we know both serial numbers are authentic to 1963 and to this guitar.
Then what happened? We think the guitar had a minor headcrack when it arrived in the shop after transport. These type of cases don't support the neck well enough so while in the case, the guitar rests on the top of it's headstock... Upon inspection you can see that the finish on the back of the neck/headstock has apparent checking and the checking breaks halfway the headstock. That is where the crack used to be. This guitar most likely went straight back to Gibson for a repair, after which Gibson restamped it for a new resale with a new number to be correct in their sales ledger and sent it back out again. Checking under blacklight the finish on top of the headstock is pretty white whereas the sides of the neck along the binding and body seem to have a purple haze, exactly like our other 2 original 1961 and 1962 Gibson Alpine White SG/LP's we have had in our shop. The rest of the finish on the neck and body glow nicely under blacklight and show no overspray or refinished parts. The heel also looks fine with no repairs.