Me & My Gui­tar: Björn Gelotte

The Swedish iron man saw his Gib­son LP Cus­tom born again with this Epi­phone sig­na­ture

Total Guitar - - CONTENTS -

1“I had it made as a replica of the num­ber one Gib­son Les Paul Cus­tom that I’ve been play­ing for years. I ac­tu­ally played it so much that I had to re-fret it; I was about to re-fret it again but I thought it was time to re­tire it. Be­fore I did that I had a good friend of mine take all the mea­sure­ments and ex­am­ine ev­ery lit­tle de­tail with the orig­i­nal one in or­der to make an ex­act replica. He was about to build it for me and then I started talk­ing to Epi­phone and they wanted to work to­gether to cre­ate a sig­na­ture model, so that was per­fect tim­ing.”


“All the mea­sure­ments are from that Gib­son Cus­tom, in­clud­ing all the hard­ware on my orig­i­nal one. I ac­tu­ally got a bag of Zakk Wylde’s old used [Grover] hard­ware for that and, hope­fully, it has helped me be­come a bet­ter player.”


“It’s got EMGs in it with golden cov­ers be­cause I think that looks ab­so­lutely gor­geous to­gether with the black. They’re 81 and 85. I found the 81 back in the early 90s. I carved out the space for it in my Yamaha RGX at the time and I’ve never looked back. I have found that, and the 85 ,to be ex­tremely re­li­able part­ners in crime when it comes to the live shows we do and they also de­liver what I need when we record. Over­all kick ass.”


“I’m ac­tu­ally very proud of this in­lay be­cause I don’t think Epi­phone did some­thing like this [be­fore on a sig­na­ture]. It’s our jester sym­bol that we have on our records. The only thing I didn’t get was the beer opener. I re­ally wanted one of those, but maybe that’s com­ing up on the next model.”


“I have a nickel al­lergy, which is sort of a pain in the ass when you play metal strings. So Jimmy Dunlop cre­ated a spe­cial set of strings for me that are coated. I think the gauge is .68 to .11 or .12.”


“The whole point in do­ing an Epi­phone is so that we could do the ex­act same thing as the Gib­son that I had, only we could make it a bit more af­ford­able. I haven’t played any other gui­tar since I got the first pro­to­type. So all the record­ing, all the tour­ing for al­most the last two years has been on one of th­ese. It makes me re­ally proud to be able to say that. Be­cause it’s one thing to be able to cre­ate a sig­na­ture in or­der to sell it but an­other to cre­ate a sig­na­ture you ac­tu­ally want to be able to play. So I’m su­per proud of that and they did a re­ally killer job.”

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