Gibson releases stunning Murphy Lab replica of Johnny Winter’s Polaris White 1964 Firebird V

Gibson Murphy Lab Johnny Winter 1964 Firebird V
(Image credit: Mick Rock, ©1974 and 2021 by Mick Rock

Gibson has unveiled the ultimate tribute to the late blues guitar great Johnny Winter, a forensic replica of his Polaris White 1964 Firebird V.

Aged in the Murphy Lab at the Gibson Custom Shop, this high-end electric guitar is designed to be indistinguishable from the original. It has the same plugged holes as the original did once it had its Maestro Vibrola removed. 

The Firebird pickguard logo has been faded to match, and they have even taken the reflector on the rhythm pickup’s tone knob.

Winter’s Firebird V has a 9-ply mahogany and walnut neck-through-body with mahogany wings, a bound Indian 12” rosewood fingerboard with 22 reissue profile frets and aged celluloid trapezoid inlays. 

Not only should it look the part but it should feel and sound it, too. Gibson has spec’d this Winter tribute ‘Bird with an Authentic ’64 Medium C-Shape neck, and there is a pair of Alnico 5 Firebird pickups at the neck and bridge positions. The control circuit is hand-wired and uses 500K CTS pots, and a three-way Switchcraft pickup switch and 1/4” output jack.

The hardware is aged to match the finish and comprises a No-Wire ABR-1 bridge, chrome-plated aluminium stop-bar, and authentic “banjo” tuners.

Completing the package is a matching hard case and a wealthy of case candy, including guitar picks, a signature Dunlop guitar slide, a certificate of authenticity and an exclusive signed print from the late, great photographer Mick Rock, who died last month.

The Johnny Winter 1964 Firebird V is available now, priced £7,899 / $8,999. See Gibson for more details.

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.