Coordinates : 36°07′48″N 86°43′33″W / 36.1298758°N 86.7257458°W / 36.1298758; -86.7257458
GIBSON BRANDS, INC. (formerly GIBSON GUITAR CORP.) is an American manufacturer of guitars , other musical instruments, and consumer and professional electronics now based in Nashville, Tennessee . The company was formerly known as Gibson Guitar Corp. and renamed Gibson Brands, Inc. on June 11, 2013.
Orville Gibson founded the company in 1902 as "The Gibson Mandolin- Guitar Mfg. Co., Ltd." in Kalamazoo, Michigan to make mandolin -family instruments. Gibson invented archtop guitars by constructing the same type of carved, arched tops used on violins. By the 1930s, the company was also making flattop acoustic guitars, as well as one of the first commercially available hollow-body electric guitars, used and popularized by Charlie Christian . In 1944, Gibson was bought by Chicago Musical Instruments (CMI) which was acquired in 1969 by Panama-based conglomerate, Ecuadorian Company Limited (E.C.L.) that changed its name in the same year to Norlin Corporation.
Gibson sells guitars under a variety of brand names and builds one of the world's most iconic guitars, the Gibson Les Paul . Many Gibson instruments are highly collectible. Gibson was at the forefront of innovation in acoustic guitars, especially in the big band era of the 1930s; the Gibson Super 400 was widely imitated. In 1952, Gibson introduced its first solid-body electric guitar, the Les Paul which became its most popular guitar to date— designed by Ted McCarty and Les Paul .
Gibson was owned by the Norlin corporation from 1969 to 1986. In 1986, the company was acquired by its present owners. Gibson is a privately held corporation owned by its chief executive officer Henry Juszkiewicz and its president David H. Berryman.
In addition to guitars, Gibson offers consumer electronics through its subsidiaries Gibson Innovations (Philips brand), TEAC Corporation (Teac and Esoteric brands), Onkyo Corporation ( Onkyo and Pioneer brands), Cerwin Vega and Stanton , as well as professional audio equipment from KRK Systems also pianos from their wholly owned subsidiary Baldwin Piano and music software from Cakewalk .
* 1 History
* 1.1 Beginnings * 1.2 Modernization
* 1.3 Recent history
Orville Gibson patented a single-piece mandolin design in 1898 that was more durable than other mandolins and could be manufactured in volume. Orville Gibson began to sell his instruments in 1894 out of a one-room workshop in Kalamazoo Michigan. In 1902 Gibson Mandolin- Guitar Mfg. Co, Ltd. was incorporated to market the instruments. Initially, the company produced only Orville Gibson's original designs. Orville died in 1918 of endocarditis (inflammation of the inside lining of the heart chambers and valves). L-5 acoustic. ES-150 (based on L-50) ES-175 D (based on L-4) Super 400 CES
The following year the company hired designer Lloyd Loar to create newer instruments. Loar designed the flagship L-5 archtop guitar and the Gibson F5 mandolin that was introduced in 1922, before leaving the company in 1924. In 1936 Gibson introduced their first "Electric Spanish" model, the ES-150 followed by other electric instruments like steel guitars , banjos and mandolins.
During World War II , instrument manufacturing at Gibson slowed due to shortages of wood and metal, and Gibson began manufacturing wood and metal parts for the military. Between 1942-1945, Gibson employed women to manufacture guitars. "Women produced nearly 25,000 guitars during World War II yet Gibson denied ever building instruments over this period," according to a 2013 history of the company. Gibson folklore has also claimed its guitars were made by "seasoned craftsmen" who were "too old for war."
In 1944 Gibson was purchased by Chicago Musical Instruments. The ES-175 was introduced in 1949. Gibson hired Ted McCarty in 1948, who became President in 1950. He led an expansion of the guitar line with new guitars such as the "Les Paul" guitar introduced in 1952 and designed by Les Paul , a popular musician in the 1950s and also a pioneer in music technology. The Les Paul was offered in Custom, Standard, Special, and Junior models. In the mid-50s, the Thinline series was produced, which included a line of thinner guitars like the Byrdland . The first Byrdlands were slim, custom built, L-5 models for guitarists Billy Byrd and Hank Garland . Later, a shorter neck was added. Other models such as the ES-350T and the ES-225T were introduced as less costly alternatives. In 1958, Gibson introduced the ES-335 T model. Similar in size to the hollow-body Thinlines, the ES-335 family had a solid center, giving the string tone a longer sustain.
In the 1950s, Gibson also produced the Tune-o-matic bridge system and its version of the humbucking pickup, the PAF ("Patent Applied For"), first released in 1957 and still sought after for its sound. In 1958, Gibson produced two new designs: the eccentrically shaped Explorer and Flying V . These "modernistic" guitars did not sell initially. It was only in the late 1960s and early 70s when the two guitars were reintroduced to the market that they sold well. The Firebird , in the early 60s, was a reprise of the modernistic idea, though less extreme.
In the late 50s, McCarty knew that Gibson was seen as a traditional company and began an effort to create more modern guitars. In 1961 the body design of the Les Paul was changed due to the demand for a double-cutaway body design. The new body design then became known as the SG (for "solid guitar"), due to disapproval from Les Paul himself. The Les Paul returned to the Gibson catalog in 1968.
On December 22, 1969, the Gibson parent company Chicago Musical Instruments was taken over by the South American brewing conglomerate ECL. Gibson remained under the control of CMI until 1974 when it became a subsidiary of Norlin Musical Instruments. Norlin Musical Instruments was a member of Norlin Industries which was named for ECL president NORton Stevens and CMI president Arnold BerLIN. This began an era characterized by corporate mismanagement and decreasing product quality. Gibson left Kalamazoo in 1984, then previous factory became Heritage Guitars Gibson Showcase at Nashville Gibson Factory at Memphis
Between 1974 and 1984 production of Gibson guitars was shifted from Kalamazoo to Nashville, Tennessee . The Kalamazoo plant kept going for a few years as a custom-instrument shop, but was closed in 1984; several Gibson employees led by plant manager Jim Duerloo established Heritage Guitars in the old factory, building versions of classic Gibson designs.
The company (Gibson) was within three months of going out of business before it was bought by Henry E. Juszkiewicz, David H. Berryman, and Gary A. Zebrowski in January 1986. New production plants were opened in Memphis, Tennessee , as well as Bozeman, Montana . The Memphis facility is used for semi-hollow and custom shop instruments, while the Bozeman facility is dedicated to acoustic instruments.
In 1977 Gibson sued Hoshino/Elger for copying the Gibson Les Paul . In 2000, Gibson sued Fernandes Guitars in a Tokyo court for allegedly copying Gibson designs. Gibson did not prevail. Gibson also sued PRS Guitars in 2005, to stop them from making their Singlecut model. The lawsuit against PRS was initially successful. However, the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit reversed the lower court decision and ordered the dismissal of Gibson's suit against PRS.
Gibson purchased Garrison Guitars in 2007. In mid 2009 Gibson reduced its work force to adjust for a decline in guitar industry sales in the United States.
In 2011, Gibson acquired the Stanton Group, including Cerwin Vega , KRK Systems and Stanton DJ . Gibson then formed a new division, Gibson Pro Audio, which will deliver professional grade audio items, including headphones, loudspeakers and DJ equipment.
Gibson announced a partnership with the Japanese-based Onkyo Corporation in 2012. Onkyo, known for audio equipment and home theater systems, became part of the Gibson Pro Audio division.
In 2013, Gibson acquired a majority stake in TEAC Corporation.
In 2014, Gibson acquired the consumer electronics business of Royal Philips.
FWS Raids many 1994 serial numbers start with "94", followed by a six-digit production number. The Gibson website provides a book to help with serial number deciphering.
In 2006, Gibson introduced a nine-digit serial number system replacing the eight-digit system used since 1977, but the sixth digit now represents a batch number.
In 2003, Gibson debuted its Ethernet -based audio protocol, MaGIC , which it developed in partnership with 3COM , Advanced Micro Devices , and Xilinx . Replacing traditional analog hook-ups with a digital connection that would, "...satisfy the unique requirements of live audio performances," may have been the goal of this project. This system may require a special pickup , but cabling is provided by a standard Cat-5 ethernet cable.
The Gibson "self-tuning guitar", also known as a "robot model", an option on some newer Les Paul, SG, Flying V and Explorer instruments, will tune itself in little more than two seconds using robotics technology developed by Tronical GmbH. Under the tradename Min-ETune, this device became standard on several models in 2014.
In 2013 Gibson introduced the _Government Series_ of Les Paul, SG, Flying V, Explorer which were essentially the same as the first series, only finished in a new color: "government tan". Guitars from both the original and the second Government Series have since become highly sought after by players -webkit-column-width: 25em; column-width: 25em; list-style-type: decimal;">
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* Achard, Ken (1989). _The History and Development of the American Guitar_. Westport, CT: Bold Strummer Ltd. ISBN 978-0-933-22418-6 .
* Bacon, Tony (2002). _50 Years of the Gibson Les Paul_. San Francisco: Backbeat Books. ISBN 978-0-879-30711-0 .
* Bacon, Tony (2011). _Flying V, Explorer, Firebird: An Odd-shaped History of Gibson’s Weird Electric Guitars_. Milwaukee, WI: Backbeat Books. ISBN 978-1-617-13008-3 .
* Bacon, Tony (2012). _The History of the American Guitar: From 1833 to the Present Day_. San Francisco: Backbeat Books. ISBN 978-1-617-13033-5 .
* Bacon, Tony (2014). _Sunburst: How the Gibson Les Paul Standard Became a Legendary Guitar_. Montclair: Backbeat Books. ISBN 978-1-617-13466-1 .
* Bonds, Ray (2004). _The Illustrated Directory of Gutiars_. New York: Barnes and Noble. ISBN 978-0-760-76317-9 .
* Carter, Walter (1994). _Gibson Guitars: 100 Years of an American Icon_. Los Ang