Whoa, Junior! Gibson's LP Junior DC Bass might upstage its big brothers
(Dave Molter | Posted 2011-05-27)
I think it was former Night Ranger bassist Jack Blades who first made a Gibson LP Junior Bass look good -- maybe because Jack is rather diminutive, and the LP Junior fit him so well. Apparently Gibson liked the design, too, because the company has just revealed the new Les Paul Junior DC Bass, a doublecut, baby-blue, short-scale cutey. With an MSRP of $1899 USD, it may not be cheap, but it sure is different.
By blending several elements of traditional Gibson design, derived from the slab-bodied Les Paul Junior guitar and the original 1960 EB-0 bass, among others, this new model from Gibson USA offers the broad appeal of a 30.5" short-scale bass—perfect for players with shorter arms and smaller hands, beginners and students, or those who are more familiar with 6-string guitar scale lengths—without compromising on an ounce of full-scale tone, from thundering lows to punchy mids and silky highs. And the short-scale bass isn't merely an "alternative" or a "student" instrument by any means.
Two of the world's most famous bassists, Paul McCartney and Jack Bruce, played short-scale basses at the most influential points their careers, and countless others have used them to make legendary rock, pop and blues recordings. Wrap this tone and functionality in the Les Paul Junior DC Bass's stunning Pelham Blue gloss nitrocellulose finish, and you've got a feature-packed instrument to suit a wide range of playing styles.
The Les Paul Junior DC Bass starts with a solid foundation of Gibson USA tradition: a solid mahogany body with glued-in mahogany neck presents outstanding resonance, depth and sustain, for plenty of tonal sweetness with impressive punching power. The neck measures 1.60" wide at the nut, with a depth of .850" at the 1st fret and .900" at the 12th, dimensions that yield outstanding speed without cramping your style in the least. The grade-A rosewood fingerboard carries 20 medium-jumbo frets, with good access right up toward the top thanks to the double-cutaway body design. Anchored by Gibson's unique and highly adjustable three-point bass bridge set deep into the meat of the body, and a set of efficient Grover™ shamrock-key tuners at the other, the Les Paul Junior DC Bass is primed to squeeze every drop of tone from this great design, too.
The heart of the Les Paul Junior DC Bass is wrapped around a classic pair of TB humbucker pickups. The enlarged TB Plus humbucker neck pickup has a ceramic magnet for enhanced punch and clarity in this position, while the Alnico magnet in the smaller TB Mini humbucker bridge pickup yields a snappy, dynamic response with no shortage of clarity. Individual volume controls and a master tone control allow you to blend pickups as desired for a wide range of tones. Add it up, and it's a superb looking, smooth playing, and powerful sounding bass that will suit the requirements of a wide range of players. Check one out today at your authorized Gibson dealer, and see what that alternative rumble can do for your music.