There have been few more eagerly anticipated signature electric guitars in recent times than the limited edition Gibson Adam Jones 1979 Les Paul Custom.
But with only 79 made of the meticulously aged and signed Murphy Lab models, plus a further 179 VOS models from the Gibson Custom Shop, finding one of the Tool guitarist's signature electrics was nigh-on impossible. Also, these instruments were not cheap.
For those who missed out and have longed for a more affordable model, hope is at hand, as Jones has revealed on his Instagram page that he has received two signature prototypes, one in a signature Epiphone hard case, the other in a regular Gibson case.
Ever since their launch, however, there has been speculation – perhaps driven by hope more than expectation – that Gibson would release an Epiphone version, and Jones' post would suggest that an announcement might be imminent. Perhaps even in time for summer NAMM.
Epiphone has been in a fine run of form in the past year, releasing a number of generously spec'd and great-sounding Les Pauls, including a very smart limited edition Les Paul Custom ”Black Beauty” for Joe Bonamassa. We would have high expectations for an Adam Jones signature model.
With the likes of the Prophecy series featuring Fishman Fluence pickups and Epiphone's limited edition 1959 Inspired By Gibson' Les Paul Standard sporting BurstBuckers, there's good reason to expect that any forthcoming Adam Jones model will have genuine US pickups.
Though whether Epiphone could offer the reverse-mount Gibson CustomBucker at the neck and high-output Seymour Duncan DDL bridge humbucker at an Epiphone price remains to be seen.
As for the Gibson case in Jones' post? That is anyone's guest. There is no signature branding on the case so it could just be another Epiphone prototype. As soon as we hear more from Gibson, Epiphone or Jones himself, we will let you know.