How to Season a Les Paul

April 22, 2009 | By | 1 Reply More

Meant to post this when the May issue of Guitar Player came out – just found it again. Here’s the Scorpions’ Matthias Jabs – whom I always liked, playing-wise more than tone-wise) – on how he seasoned one of his Les Pauls. And for the record, I did search for a photo pf him playing a Les Paul, but couldn’t find one. He does have a few Lesters on his website, which interestingly enough sells custom Matthias Explorer– and Strat-type guitars for large coin.

Guitar Player references the clean tone of “Love is War” from the Scorps’ recent Humanity: Hour 1 disc, and asked Matthias how we got it. In short:

“I bought [that Les Paul] in 2002 when we were touring with Deep Purple. I didn’t play it…but it was always on stage – from the soundcheck on…. People thought I was crazy, but I know that guitars sound much better when they have had frequencies going through them. The best way is to play them yourself, but if the guitar gets the sound from the speakers, taht’s the next bes thing. It also got some sun – we played outdoors a lot on that tour – and that helps tone as well.”

Could this be why some old guitars sound so good? Not just drier, aged wood, but vibrated, photon-peppered wood? Hmmmmmm.

A good tidbit from the folks at Guitar Player. And here’s another, about violin wood improving with vibrations, from The New York Times, courtesy of user DarthJeff at the MyLesPaul forum.

Category: Guitar woods, Les Paul, Matthias Jabs/Scorpions

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  1. guitthumper says:

    I’ve always read that acoustic guitars age best when played for exactly this reason. An old acoustic that’s been hanging on the wall for thirty years isn’t going to have aged as well as a guitar that’s newer but has been played every day. I imagine the same would go for electrics, but would probably take much longer to age just by virtue of solid body versus acoustic.

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