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Gibson Starburst


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I've had 3 of them. Common wisdom has them as more electric than acoustic, but mine ( especially the one I have now) have an acoustic mercurial clarity that complements my other more conventional guitars very well. I wouldn't want it as my only guitar, but it is selling it short to diminish its acoustic tonal qualities.


( BTW - Jorma used one for years - the liner notes on Land of Heroes specify Starburst & the Walker-built J-35 as the 2 guitars. The cover of Too Many Years has a drawing of him playing a Starburst - & I stand to be corrected by those in the know, but it sounds to me like the entire recording is Starburst.he had 3 - and currently retains one - the blue one is featured prominently on his Homespun 3-DVD set).


Here's my current one - due to the level of ornamentation, I have named it "der Blingle":


94 Starburst Custom

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As they say in Darts....nice grouping!!....lol......how much do these Starbursts go for???


yeah - from left to right - Starburst, Smeck Radio Grande, Nick Lucas (mahogany b&s) & John Walker Clark Fork


I thought placing the copy of Quah in the background was a nice touch.

Too bad there'll never be a Gibson Jorma Sig ( a J-35 project planned a few years ago, then killed) to add to the grouping!


Over the time I've been buying Starbursts, I've seen prices in the 1200 - 3500 range.


I THINK the following is correct (but won't dispute any corrections):


Only made in 92 & 93.

I've heard it described as an all-maple Florentine cutaway J-185,original concept by Ren Ferguson.


There were 3 models - in 92, just the Starburst, but mine had the word "Flame" in the model designation as well.


In 93: the Studio (maybe only "Star" as opposed to "Starburst" inlays), the Standard & the Elite. The Elite had extra binding & a backstripe & fancier topwood generally - & mine has ebony fretboard - I think all Elites might have .


The Elite fetches the most - in 2007 $3k - 3.5k on eBay; now I'm not sure. I sold my Elite for $3200.


My current one was apparently commissioned in 1994, one of a pair - had to be Custom since by then the short-lived Starburst had been dropped as a model.

It's basically an Elite, but with added abalone purfling &rosette & abalone inlays.very flashy, hence the name "Der Blingle"

Added bonus of label sigs by both Ren & John Walker.

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