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Epiphone refreshes the BB King Lucille with limited run Bone White and Cherry finishes

Epiphone BB King Lucille Bone White
(Image credit: Epiphone )

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Epiphone has unveiled a treat for blues fans on both sides of the Atlantic, digging into the paint cupboard for a pair of European and US exclusive finishes for its BB King Lucille model.

The European market sees Lucille looking positively bridal in Bone White, while a Cherry model is released for the US.

The Epiphone BB King Lucille is a big favourite at MusicRadar. Modelled after the most iconic blues guitar in history, presenting the classic Gibson semi-hollow electric at a more accessible price point, and that gold hardware and block inlay sure looked good against the Ebony finish.

For a blues or jazz player, it was a no-brainer, a must-audition. But please don’t make us choose between original Ebony, Cherry and Bone White. At least the specs are the same, so it is simply a question of which Lucille wears its finish best?

Epiphone BB King Lucille Bone White

(Image credit: Epiphone )

There’s something timelessly classic about the Ebony model, the black tux with gold cufflinks giving it a regal bearing, nothing less than what the King of the Blues deserves. But then Bone White looks so clean and cool, and Cherry, well, Cherry always looks good on a ES-335 body shape.

Whichever finish you choose, you’ve got a serious electric guitar for the money. The finish is tip-top. It’s heavy, a bit of a beast in that regard, but then some players dig that. 

The body comprises a five-ply maple and poplar laminate, buttressed with spruce bracing and maple centre block to nix feedback. BB King was not a fan of feedback. He went one step further in trying to eliminate it from his rig and requested no f-holes on his Lucille.

Epiphone BB King Lucille Cherry

(Image credit: Epiphone)

He also prized intonation, as anyone with his vibrato and feel should. Instead of the typical tailpiece, his and these Epiphone Lucilles are fitted with a tune-o-matic bridge and a P-6 fine-tuning tailpiece. Grover Rotomatic tuners with kidney bean-style buttons keep things solid.

The Epiphone BB King Lucille has a pair of Alnico Classic Pro humbuckers, volume and tone controls for each pickup and a three-way pickup selector, and there’s the 6-way Varitone switch acting as a notch filter. It can help dial in cool tones but if it causes fright it’s not big deal; position 1 on the chicken-head dial bypasses the switch.

The Bone White Lucille is available now across Europe, priced £849 / €945 street, with the Cherry model priced $949 street in the US.

See Epiphone for more details.

Epiphone BB King Lucille Cherry

(Image credit: Epiphone)

Jonathan Horsley has been writing about guitars and guitar culture since 2005, playing them since 1990, and regularly contributes to MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitar World. He uses Jazz III nylon picks, 10s during the week, 9s at the weekend, and shamefully still struggles with rhythm figure one of Van Halen’s Panama.