Gibson Custom


The Gibson Custom Murphy Lab 1961 ES-335 Reissue is a historically accurate semi-hollowbody that looks and sounds like it was made over 60 years ago. To build the guitar, Gibson spent an entire year examining original examples. They chemically re-created plastics and reverse-engineered lacquer formulas, nailing down every last detail. With an Ultra Light aging by the Murphy Lab, the Custom Shop 1961 ES-335 is a dead ringer for a vintage instrument. Available now from Guitar Center, it would be a welcome addition to anyone's collection.

Gibson Custom Murphy Lab 1961 ES-335 Main Features

  • 3-ply maple/poplar/maple body with Ultra Light aging
  • Mahogany neck with authentic ’61 Skinny C-shape, Indian Rosewood fretboard
  • Dual alnico III CustomBuckers (unpotted), 3-way switch
  • ABR-1 tune-o-matic bridge, aluminum stopbar tailpiece, Kluson single line, single ring tuners

’61 ES-335 Construction

When Gibson President Ted McCarty cooked up the ES-335, his goal was to make an acoustic-looking guitar that sounded like a solidbody. The 3-ply maple/poplar/maple construction is lightweight like an acoustic; a solid maple center block reduces feedback, but doesn't eliminate it. Use that as an opportunity to harness the feedback musically, like famed Gibson players Freddie King, Alvin Lee and Alex Lifeson.

Chunky, Vintage-Style Neck

The solid mahogany neck has an authentic ’61 Skinny C-shape—a faster profile than the ’59 model. The long tenon joint is set with period-correct hide glue. Medium jumbo frets facilitate big bends on the Indian Rosewood fretboard. The fretboard binding is extra rolled with smooth edges for a softer feel.

Authentic Electronics

When the ES-335 was first released, Gibson said the PAF pickup was "essential for clear, sparkling, sustaining tone." These alnico III CustomBuckers capture the exact same magic. Unpotted, they're topped with authentic profile nickel silver covers. The hand-wired harness uses CTS 500K pots and paper-in-oil capacitors.

Timeless Hardware

All of the hardware on the ’61 ES-335 reissue matches original specs, from the ABR-1 tune-o-matic bridge and the aluminum stop bar tailpiece to the Kluson single line, single ring tuners. Each piece is lightly aged by the Murphy Lab.

Ultra Light Aged Finish

Master Artisan Tom Murphy was instrumental in the creation of Gibson Custom Shop. For the last 25 years, he's replicated the look of vintage guitars on new instruments. This ES-335 goes through his Ultra Light aging process. There is slight lacquer checking, but very little playing wear. It looks like an instrument that has spent most of its life in the case.

The Gibson Custom Murphy Lab 1961 ES-335 Reissue comes with a certificate of authenticity and a brown/pink Lifton reissue 5-latch case.

WARNING: Cancer and Reproductive Harm

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