While the Flying Vs released as the first Dave Mustaine signature models haven't been too eyebrow-raising (beyond their price tags) considering his past preference for that shape, the news that Gibson were willing to design a 24-fret acoustic guitar for the Megadeth maestro was a surprise. And as the Dave Mustaine Songwriter emerges into the spotlight with an official release today, we get to have a closer look.
As Gibson Brand President Cesar Gueikian told MusicRadar last year, the initial design for the guitar was quite different. "It's really interesting because we first started with a smaller body but a sharp cutaway, and he actually used that guitar on the [Megadeth] record that hasn't come out yet," explained Cesar. "And then we pivoted into a bigger body in the style of the Gibson Songwriter."
Mustaine's Songwriter's 24-fret requirement posed challenges for Gibson – indeed it's the first acoustic they've ever made with that many frets. "Every every detail into design and then the construction is a very involved process because of all the things that Dave wanted," Cesar told us.
The guitar features 'Advanced' scalloped X-bracing, and a slightly thinner walnut body than traditional Songwriters, plus a cutaway for access to those frets.
The 24.75" scale mahogany neck features an ebony 'board with mother of pearl teeth inlays, Grover Rotomatic tuners, a TUSQ nut, saddle, bridge pins, and a higher output than usual LR Baggs VTC under-saddle pickup with soundhole mounted volume and tone controls.
Megadeth's iconic mascot Vic Rattlehead is also represented with artwork on the pickguard and on a mother of pearl peghead inlay.
Can you put a price on peace? No. But Gibson can put a price on both the signed limited edition and standard model of this new acoustic Custom Shop signature guitar; $4,999 and $4,499, respectively.
So who's buying?
More info at Gibson (opens in new tab).