Gibson unveils $19,999 Custom Shop Kirk Hammett “Greeny” 1959 Les Paul Standard and a more affordable model is on its way

Gibson has unveiled an all-new Custom Shop replica of Kirk Hammett’s ‘Greeny’ 1959 Les Paul Standard. Meticulously aged in the inner sanctum of the Murphy Lab, this is high-end electric guitar will set you back a cool $19,999.

That's quite the price tag but then it is cheaper than the Collector's Edition Greeny Les Paul Standard that Gibson released in September 2022, which was available only via the Gibson Garage and cost more than twice this new model. 

There is, however, more good news for fans of ‘Greeny’, because Gibson has announced that it will be making a more  affordable USA production line version of the Les Paul Standard that was famously once owned by blues guitar greats Peter Green and Gary Moore. That will be out later this year. 

Not much details have been given as to when, but we do know that they will feature custom Greeny Buckers, with the neck pickup’s polarity reversed to give you that trademark out-of-phase sound when the pickup selector is in the middle position. It also has a AAA flame maple top, a mahogany body, and Indian rosewood fingerboard. 

You will have to do the ageing on the finish yourself but by anyone’s lights it is one good looking Les Paul Standard, a little reminiscent of Slash’s Appetite Burst Les Paul Standard. It also looks as though it has the Sperzel tuners, an aftermarket mod that Moore fitted on Greeny back in the day.

But let’s look at what $19,999 buys you from the Murphy Lab. It is an uncanny replica, with the pick wear exactly as you would find it on the real thing. It has a lightweight mahogany body, figured maple top, a Custom Greeny profile mahogany neck that is glued to the body with hot hide glue. 

The neck is topped with a one-piece Indian rosewood fingerboard that has a 12” radius as per house style, trapezoid inlays, and 22 medium jumbo frets. The scale length measures 24.75”. Like the original, there are Sperzel tuners, an ABR-1 bridge and lightweight nickel stop bar. You won’t find a pickguard on it but the holes remain.

The Gibson Custom Shop Kirk Hammett "Greeny" 1959 Les Paul Standard is an exacting replica of the original LP once owned by Peter Green and Gary Moore

(Image credit: Gibson)

It is one of Greeny’s charms that it is the very fact it is player’s grade that makes it so special. This was not one of those 1959 ‘Bursts that were kept in a temperature and humidity controlled room for posterity. It was played; it is played. 

Hammett uses it every night with Metallica. He has always maintained that the people deserve to see it played, and now, with the release of these replicas, he hopes some more people can get their hands on its vibe.

“I am very honoured and grateful for this opportunity with Gibson,” said Hammett. “To be able to share some of that mojo which ‘Greeny’ has means a lot to me. It’s exciting to know that anyone can experience some of that ‘Greeny’ magic. I truly think these models are just as inspiring as the original and hope you do too!”

Gibson USA Kirk Hammett Greeny Les Paul Standard

The Gibson USA Kirk Hammett Greeny Les Paul Standard, coming soon but when? (Image credit: Gibson)

Other features include the aforementioned Custom Alnico II Greeny Buckers at neck and bridge positions. There are mismatched controls, with a pair of True Historic gold knobs and a pair of True Historic gold knobs with Silver Inserts. The control loom is hand-wired with bumblebee caps, vintage audio taper pots, and the pickup selector and output jack are both by Switchcraft. 

The icing on the cake is the brown Lifton reissue guitar case, lined with luxurious pink plush. Lovely. Also included are a COA and Gibson Custom Shop Switch Plate Medallion. The Kirk Hammett "Greeny" 1959 Les Paul Standard is available now, priced $19,999. See Gibson for more details.

Stay tuned for more news of the USA production line model, and consider this: Will we see an Epiphone model further down the line a la Joe Bonamassa’s Lazarus 1959 Les Paul Standard? A similar treatment would work well; reverse the neck pickup polarity and those out-of-phase electric guitar tones would be easily achieved.

Jonathan Horsley

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.