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BB King Lucille or IBJL Casino

Chris the Gent

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Well, they're very different guitars. Lucille is Semi-hollow body, with NO "f" holes,

so much less prone to feed back, at higher volumes. Upper fret access is much

better, with Lucille, as well, as neck joint is at the 19th fret. Humbucker pickups,

with varitone, and you have a "tone monster!" Plus, it looks "posh," as well...

And I don't mean Victoria Beckham! ;>)


IBJL Casino is true (enough) to original Casino (USA) specs, has (USA) parts and

electronics...and P-90 pickups. Upper fret access is restricted, due to neck joint

being at the 16 fret. Comes in two versions (Sunburst 1965, and "Revolution"

matte natural). Very light, and fully hollowbody. Very Unique sound/growl.


So, depending which specs you like/need, for your type playing....either one, would

be great. If it were me, with what I play most (blues with upper fret leads), "Lucille"

would be the one I'd get (first, anyway). But, I understand your problem, as I too,

love 'em both!



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I know I have a Les Paul, but I'm otherwise not keen on signature guitars.


Looking at your gear list (and I know you can't really compare a strat with a Casino) I'd say you've already got a guitar that can do clean twangy stuff in the strat.


If I was going to get a second archtop (and I have a Wildkat with p90s already), I'd get a Cherry Dot and use the extra money to buy a set of Seymour Duncans to put in it. I think a Dot just looks more traditional.

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Normally, I don't cater to "Signature" guitars, either. But, "Lucille" is different!

It's an ES-355 Stereo, with NO "F" holes. You can't get that, from Gibson, without

a hefty priced "Custom made" version, any other way. Also, the Epiphone version

is as good an semi-hollow body, as you'll ever get...in it's price range, anyway.

Has all the warmth, and sustain, anyone could ask for, from a Semi. And, with the

varitone, the tonal possibilities are outstanding. Even if you ignore the Varitone,

you have (essentially) an a fancy 335, in tone...with even less possibility of feed-

back. So...THIS particular "Signature" guitar has a LOT more going for it, than just

BB's endorsement! IMHO...as always.



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I like the fact that the Epi Lucile still says "Lucile" on the headstock as opposed to the Gibson's "B. B. King" inlay.



Yeah, especially since it's still marketed as "Lucille!" I can see Gibson making one for BB...that has

his name, and the crown inlay...but, why get rid of the "Lucille" inlay, for the standard production

models? IF they were going to do THAT...they should go back to the "split-diamond" inlays, that the

standard ES-355 has...IMHO. In fact, I think Chuck Berry has a Red version, that has all the "Lucille"

specs (no f holes, the TP-6 and stereo wiring) but has the standard Split-Diamond inlay, in the headstock.

Seems I saw him playing it, in the Taylor Hackford documentary: "Hail, Hail Rock & Roll" where's he's

Trying to teach his signature licks (the right way), to Keith Richards! LOL!



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which one has the better finish out of the two?


The IBJL is poly, but it's very very thin. I'd be surprised if the finish on the Lucille is nicer.


I have the Casino and love it.


For the money I think the Casino is hard to beat. Vintage-specific appointments and construction, USA pickups and electronics, comes with hardshell case, and is also an original Epiphone model and not a lower-priced Gibson. (not to knock the Epiphone Gibson models, I just like the history and heritage behind the Casino, that's all!)


Either way you're going to get a great guitar! Have fun!

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