Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

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Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Sun Jul 17, 2011 2:13 am

I have been looking for a Lemon Drop for some time, and being in Canada they are hard to find. I got a price a couple of years ago from a local supplier and it was in the Gibson Studio range price wise.
I am also interested in the Joe B style LP. I know it isn't called that for obvious reasons but it is a clone after all.
I would like to hear how they sound and if there were any issues as I had with unlevel frets. Of course that was the only issue I had with the guitar V100 GT I have.
I have never owned a distressed guitar and I would like to know how that affected your love/hate for the guitar.
I have heard lot of cuts by Gav, and Chappers on You tube, playing the Lemon Drop. Does the Jb sound like BB2 and 3s?
Thanks for any feedback.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  rev48 on Sun Jul 17, 2011 10:37 pm

My Lemon Drop sounds so much better than my stock V100…
As a matter of fact it sounds and plays better than My Gibson LP standard (Burstbucker pups)
The tuners are far better than the V100 to………
If you were blindfold and played a bunch of LP’s I bet you’d pick the Lemon Drop
Now to my pet hate, the Factory Relicing is poor….To properly relic a guitar is a difficult and expensive process and it is almost impossible to do properly on a production line…….
I wish Vintage would just leave them without adding the Relicing, presumably it would save on Labour too
The other problem is there seems to be 2 types a heavy relic job which is darker and looks like it has been attacked with a screw driver (several holes in the front)
And a lighter relic effect which has a much lighter colour and less relicing. I chose an example of the Latter
Here’s one like mine

Here’s a couple of examples of the ones with the “screw driver” attack


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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:41 am

I have pictures of one of the earlier models with the heavy relic job. The orginal owner has since sold it. I will have to ask him if the overly done relic job was the reason. I have seen pictures of the original Peter Green/Gary Moore guitar and it is a Cherry Sunburst that had faded. The lemon coloured light relic does not look like it at all. The only Vintage guitar I have played was the V100 GT, and it is a really sweet playing guitar. I like the weight and the neck feel. With a good set of pickups like the Wilkinsons and the out of phase design, I think it would be a sweet guitar.
Funny the Joe B uses the same different knob idea. I guess that is where he got the idea from.
This is the real one.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xMpxAIAF1DM
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Keith Bennett on Mon Jul 18, 2011 1:50 pm

As far as I understand it the different knob thing on JB's guitar originated on a GT that hung around in Joe's Dad's guitar shop long enough for the future blues-rock god to become fond of it. The back and sides were painted black, and the black plastics and differentiated knobs added in an attempt to tidy it up in order to move it on. JB was apparently pretty upset when it was sold. So Joe Bonamassa's iconic guitar is a replica of that one. I'd love to own a JBM, if only as a tribute to one of my favourite guitarists, but I'd need to find more space - my guitar cupboard is full! By the way, I'll be seeing Joe in Blackpool in October - anyone else on here going to be there?
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  rev48 on Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:49 pm

I don’t think that the Original started life as a Cherry Burst maybe Honey Burst????
Here’s the Real Deal

and here is my actual Lemon Drop

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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Tue Jul 19, 2011 9:36 am

Tlhanks for the pictures. I decided to check with my local supplier, and he has both the JB and the Lemon drop in stock. He sent me a picture of the lemon drop and it is very similar to yours.
I will probably head out and take a look at both of them this week.
BTW in reading about the Original Lemon drop, every description is that it was a Cherryburst that faded to lemon drop. If you check on the LP registry on the Les Paul forum you will see several that are very similar. It must have been the type of paint they used in 59.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Supernaut on Wed Jul 20, 2011 5:41 am

I've heard people (mainly Lemon Drop owners) that the LD is the best guitar that Vintage make, in one case the LD was this guys dream guitar! In terms of unleveled frets, I was speaking to guy Vintage retailer and he was saying that he's had to send quite a few back to the factory because the QC hadn't checked over it properly. So yeah, Vintages QC isn't very consistent (it's an issue with big brands like Gibson as well) but my AV1 was brilliant so see if you can try the exact guitar that your going to buy to see whether it'll fall apart or last. And finally, I don't like distressed guitars. I like my guitars new and although they are brand new I don't want it to look old, I'd rather have own it for 20 years and see what happens Razz
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Wed Jul 20, 2011 11:25 am

Supernaut wrote:I've heard people (mainly Lemon Drop owners) that the LD is the best guitar that Vintage make, in one case the LD was this guys dream guitar! In terms of unleveled frets, I was speaking to guy Vintage retailer and he was saying that he's had to send quite a few back to the factory because the QC hadn't checked over it properly. So yeah, Vintages QC isn't very consistent (it's an issue with big brands like Gibson as well) but my AV1 was brilliant so see if you can try the exact guitar that your going to buy to see whether it'll fall apart or last. And finally, I don't like distressed guitars. I like my guitars new and although they are brand new I don't want it to look old, I'd rather have own it for 20 years and see what happens Razz
I have 5 Les Pauls and have owned one other. I have two Gibsons, a Gibson Gold top, and a 1996 Standard in tobacco burst, an Epi Elitist Custom, and another Epi Custom special Edition.
I too was a fanatic about guitars being in pristine condition. I have seen Fender Custom shop Strats that were 4000 dollars and look like they were 100 years old. My Guitar tech has one that even has a missing pot. Just a hole. Of course the guitar sounds and plays like a dream, and he loves it.
I paid about 400 Canadian for my Vintage GT, and with the Fret level and complete set up it was another 100 dollars. Now it plays as well as any of my Gibsons. I also have several SGs and a 335 so I can tell you that I know Gibson tone. The GT I have is a P90 and I am not a huge fan of the hum. I have heard several cliips of the Lemon Drop and it does sound very nice. They are in the cost range of an Epi standard, but i have heard that they are actually better. I do like the headstock, and the picture I have seen of the guitar in stock is not the heavy relic. It might be just eough.
My problem is that I am running out of space. I have 20 Electrics and have filled up two closets with guitars. I have 6 amps in my music room. I will probably move some of them to make room for the Lemon Drop. I will be paying very close attention to the frets on the Lemon drop. I will not buy it if it needs a fret level. Oh and just for the record I have owned about 10 Gibsons and none of them every needed a fret level.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Newmountain on Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:03 am

Some people from JHS here to comment on the unlevelled frets?

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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Fri Jul 22, 2011 12:03 am

I pulled out my V100 GT last night and played it. It plays like a dream. I love the neck and the feel of this guitar. It is the only Vintage guitar I have owned and it was a reasonable price.
Let me say this about the levelling issue. I like an extremely low action. I have taken my guitars to many techs until I found one that does what I want! He has taken several "ugly Ducklings" and made them into Swans for me. When I take a guitar to him he will do everything it needs to make it play the way I want it to. I complained about buzzing and he got it down to where it was 90%, but said I would need a fret level. He knew that guitar was a low priced one and didn't want to just go ahead and do the job without my approval. I gave him the go ahead and it came out perfect.
I recently bought an Epi G400 that was 5 years old. It had some issues and again I paid very little for it. With the low action it buzzed as well. So another fret level was in order. It played so nicely I went out and bought a Gibson SG Standard to go with my 1968 Gibson Special P90.
So I think if the Lemon Drop is in the 600 range it should have no issues with the Frets. Another 100 would put it in Gibson Studio range and of the three Studios I have owned none of them needed levelling.
That is the only reason I mentioned the levelling. I am sure not all Vintage guitars need fret levelling and I am sure not all players like their action to be perfect at the lowest possible height, like I do.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Fri Jul 22, 2011 4:45 am

Toying with a JB and still non the wiser - anyone out there got one?
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Sat Jul 23, 2011 4:09 am

Played a JB today - very disappointed - really dry fingerboard and rough frets - tone was good but poor playability IMHO. Finish OK but not great...
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Sat Jul 23, 2011 12:32 pm

Alex wrote:Played a JB today - very disappointed - really dry fingerboard and rough frets - tone was good but poor playability IMHO. Finish OK but not great...
Where did you play the guitar. If you don't mind, what was the asking price? In Canada they are selling for 549 which is in the Epi Standard area, and I have seen quite a few Epis that are really nice.
If they are going to compete with them price wise they better have decent necks on them.
I won't be able to check out the Lemon drop and JB for at least 2 weeks. If they still have them.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Sat Jul 23, 2011 7:21 pm

Local music shop in York UK. Price is UK£230... May go back today and have another play...
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  rev48 on Sat Jul 23, 2011 8:19 pm

Alex wrote:Local music shop in York UK. Price is UK£230... May go back today and have another play...
Hey Alex I'm dissapointed for you.....
If its a new one its a brilliant price.......Can't you go back and get them to order one for you or failing that sort the frets out for you
the dry board is no problem a little bore oil will bring it right back to life (if the shop sells woodwind instruments they will already have some bore oil there)......
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Sat Jul 23, 2011 11:22 pm

rev48 wrote:
Alex wrote:Local music shop in York UK. Price is UK£230... May go back today and have another play...
Hey Alex I'm dissapointed for you.....
If its a new one its a brilliant price.......Can't you go back and get them to order one for you or failing that sort the frets out for you
the dry board is no problem a little bore oil will bring it right back to life (if the shop sells woodwind instruments they will already have some bore oil there)......
I use bore oil on all my Rosewood boards, as you British say it is "Brilliant". I used to use the D'Addario lemon oil solution for guitars but the bore oil is much better. A little goes a long way.
I don't know what the MSRP on the JB is but if you take the current currency exchange rate it is 200 dollars less than in Canada. A great price. I am sure with a little work it could be a great guitar.
That is what I usually look for now. If the initital price point is low enough to justify the cost of repair, then I usually go for it.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Sun Jul 24, 2011 3:55 am

Well I went back today and bought it! Simple as that. I played it a bit more and got the guys in the shop to show off a bit and it sounded OK. I figure I can do things about the fretboard etc - thanks for the tips.

Anyhow it is a lovely looking guitar - stressed an all - so here we go down the dusty trail of learning electric guitar techniques (I play acoustic stuff at the moment - Vintage V300). I shall post a pic of my new friend soon...
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Zman on Sun Jul 24, 2011 5:03 am

Alex wrote:Well I went back today and bought it! Simple as that. I played it a bit more and got the guys in the shop to show off a bit and it sounded OK. I figure I can do things about the fretboard etc - thanks for the tips.

Anyhow it is a lovely looking guitar - stressed an all - so here we go down the dusty trail of learning electric guitar techniques (I play acoustic stuff at the moment - Vintage V300). I shall post a pic of my new friend soon...
Glad to hear you ended up with it. For the price you stole it. On diy fret booards I usually do them about 3 times a year. On regular ones about twice. I use a Q tip and put it on the frets. Let it sit for a while then wipe off any excess. I have done it with the strings on. I just clean the strings thoroughly after. I had a Gibson Classic LP that had hung on the wall of a shop for a year or so. I got the neck at least 2 shades darker with this technique in less than a year. Bore oil for sure.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Wed Jul 27, 2011 4:47 am

Bore oil did indeed do the trick - thanks a bunch guys. Really happy with my JBM ICON. All I need now is a battered suitable case for it... I think a new case would look odd. Shame Vintage don't do distressed cases for these ICON guitars...
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  rev48 on Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:04 pm

Alex wrote:Bore oil did indeed do the trick - thanks a bunch guys. Really happy with my JBM ICON. All I need now is a battered suitable case for it... I think a new case would look odd. Shame Vintage don't do distressed cases for these ICON guitars...
Battered case is a great idea.......
I'm glad your fretboard is sorted out too.......
BTW the rules of the Internet are until we see pics it doesn't exist Razz
so let us drool over some gold top porn......
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:19 pm

well my avatar is the pots - when I get round to re-sizing oters I will post some more...
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  ponte on Fri Jul 29, 2011 4:21 am

Congrats on the new guitar - would love to see the effect the bore oil has had on the neck, am considering applying some to the necks on my guitars after hearing about the results others on here have had.

Going back to the original topic - my Lemon Drop is my most played guitar, utterly fantastic instrument. Tried it in a shop out of curiosity when I wasn't looking for a guitar, bought it after playing it for about 30 minutes in the shop. No idea how they do it for the money.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Fri Jul 29, 2011 6:51 am

When I bought the guitar the neck was very dry and going pink. It felt awful actually and nearlt put me off buying it. Howver, the bore oil - very small amount has turned the fingerboard a lovely dark colour - as it should be! and it looks amazing now. I have read that a little goes a long way and it should be used sparingly, so I may leave it 6 months or so before applying any more...

I think it was fate for me to buy the JBM. I had decided to get an electric guitar after 25 years of playing acoustic (folk). Always liked the shape of the Les Paul, so went to my favourite guitar shop in York - called Mor Music and had a look around. Fell for the Tanglewood TSB58 and was promised a good deal depending on stock. Well a cheque I was expecting was late, the TSB went so I had to look around for something else. I also bought a couple of guitar magazines and Joe Bonamassa seemed to be everywhere playing odd looking Les Paul goldtops. I went back to the shop and there was the Vintage JBM sitting on a shelf. Played it, went home, thought about it, looked on here and on the FB page, went back bought it - felt like it was waiting for me!!! Now all I need to do is learn how to play stuff - finger-picking folk sounds odd on an electric!!! Very Happy
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Supernaut on Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:49 pm

Alex wrote:Played a JB today - very disappointed - really dry fingerboard and rough frets - tone was good but poor playability IMHO. Finish OK but not great...
If you can, try a another JB. Vintage has an inconsistent QC, sometimes the guitar is full checked sometimes there's no on there to check it. It's problem with a lot of guitar manufacturers, even Gibson.
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

Post  Alex on Sat Jul 30, 2011 5:21 am

If you read the whole thread you would see I bought it...
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Re: Tell me about your Joe Bonamassa, and Lemon Drop LPs

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