After our recent chats with Def Leppard and our rock round table catch-up with Whitesnake and Black Star Riders, we took the chance to head backstage and inspect the sizeable on-the-road guitar collection of Phil Collen, Viv Campbell, Joel Hoekstra, Reb Beach, Damon Johnson and Scott Gorham.
Vivian Campbell's 1956 Les Paul Standard Reissue
An LP from the Def Leppard man's collection.
Vivian Campbell's 1959 Les Paul Standard Reissue
Another of Viv's reissue Les Pauls.
Vivian Campbell's Hybrid Les Paul with stickers
The neck is from a ’78 Custom; the body is from a ’59 Standard.
Phil Collen's Jackson X-Stroyer
Scotty, Phil’s tech, says: “It’s modelled after his old Ibanez Destroyer. He wanted to have something that was a tip of the hat. He still has the original at his house in London, but it’s seen better days”
Phil Collen's Jackson Supreme
A one-time Jackson signature model that debuted in 2011.
Joel Hoekstra's Taylor Grand Auditorium nylon-string acoustic
Joel says: “I played this Taylor nylonstring during the Deep Purple classic Soldier Of Fortune”.
Reb Beach's black Suhr signature
Reb says: “I use this beat-up guitar for Mistreated and Burn. It has the Jeff Beck pickups in it for a pretty rippin’ Strat tone”.
Reb Beach's white Suhr signature
Reb says: “The white Strat[-style model] is not as hot, with less output from the factory pickups, but it has a unique warm sound.
“It’s a beautiful guitar, but I make sure not to play Mistreated on it, since Blackmore fans would probably throw stuff at me”.
Damon Johnson's Gibson Les Paul Standard
Damon says: “I named this ‘Green Manalishi’; it was ordered to my specs in 2015. It’s a ’57 Reissue in Candy Apple Green, heavily aged, with Gibson Custom Bucker pickups”.
Phil Collen's Jackson 'London' PC1
Scotty Appleton, Phil’s tech, says: “Myself and Jackson put together this guitar; I did the graphics.
“Phil was born in London in 1957 - it was intended for his 50th, but he got it for his 51st. It’s dangerous when you do a guitar birthday present - you never know how it’s gonna turn out!”
Phil Collen's Jackson 'Bela Lugosi' PC1
Scotty, Phil’s tech, says: “The neck seems a bit small these days, but he still loves playing it”.
Phil Collen's Jackson Stealth PC1 (aka 'The Ninja')
Scotty, Phil’s tech, says: “This has a titanium Floyd Rose, and DiMarzios - it’s a Super 3 in the back, we don’t use the middle one much, and there’s the old Sustainer/ Sustainiac system. Phil never touches the volume or tone dials”.
Reb's Suhr Reb Beach Standard
Reb says: “This solid koa guitar is a replica of my original Pensa-Suhr that I bought in ’86.
“The original is retired, and hangs in Kip Winger’s studio. It’s the guitar I’m known for, I guess”.
Reb's Sunburst maple-top Suhr
Reb says: “This beautiful Sunburst maple top guitar is by far my best-sounding guitar, and it used to be my worst.
“I put the EMG gold pickups in, and it changed everything. I don’t use it as often because it has 24 frets, which still kinda screws me up”.
Reb's Suhr signature
Reb says: “This guitar is green or purple, depending on how you look at it.
“It is a very expensive paint job that’s used on race cars. It’s fun to bounce the spotlight around the arena with the mirror pickguard, an idea I stole from Paul Stanley”.
Damon Johnson's 2012 Les Paul Standard
Damon says: “My 2012 black Les Paul Custom has Gibson BurstBucker pickups. It’s my tip of the hat to original Thin Lizzy guitarist, Brian Robertson”.
Damon Johnson's ESP Eclipse
Damon says: “My ESP Silverburst Eclipse, has Seymour Duncan Pearly Gates pickups. I’ve played ESPs since joining Alice Cooper in 2004”.
Scott Gorham's Gibson Les Paul Axcess Standard
Phil, Scott’s tech, says: “This is Scott’s Number One guitar, one of three custom-made for Scott and the only Les Paul Axcess in the world in this finish. It has a 498T PU in the bridge and a 496R in the neck”
Whitesnake and Thin Lizzy play Ramblin’ Man Fair at Mote Park, Maidstone on 23 July. For tickets and info, head over to Ramblin' Man Fair.