Gibson ES 175 is the most talked about guitar in jazz guitar music. It is beautifully crafted with a neck length of 24 3/4" and has a hollow body.
The Gibson 175 comes fitted with a trapeze tailpiece complete with a tune Omatic bridge. This Gibson guitar is still in such demand that it is still being manufactured today.
Gibson's Economical Electric Guitar
Gibson 175 were first made in 1945 and it was Gibsons first electric guitar with a Florentine cut way. The marketing strategy that Gibson used was to introduce the ES-175 as an economical alternative to the L5.
The first batch of Gibson ES 175 guitars had only one single coil pickup (a P-90) fitted near the neck region and a beautifully carved rosewood bridge.
The introduction of the ES-175D in 1953 saw the production of the two pickup models. The Gibson ES 175 and the ES-175D came in two colors, either sunburst or natural finish. It was only in February 1957 that the ES-175 models had humbuckers fitted on them and it fit well to produce a full rich tone.
Emulating The ES-175's Sound
The Gibson ES-175, having a large hollow body, has a rich sound. Many guitar players tried to get these sounds by turning the tone controls on their guitars in the anti clockwise position to try to get more bass.
Why The Number 175?
Why is this Gibson guitar named as ES-175?
Nothing magical about the number 175. Just that this Gibson guitar was originally selling at $175.00, hence the name 175. Interesting, right?
Who Used The Gibson ES 175?
Many pop, jazz, rock, guitar players used the Gibson ES 175. Musician Scotty Moore, Elvis Presley's guitar player played on an ES-295,than changed to an all gold ES-175 which had a dual P-90 fitted on it. Steve Howe the legendary guitar player uses an ES-175 for its awesome craftsmanship and ease of playing.
Many jazz guitar players like Pat Metheny, took advantage of the new pickup sounds to get close to Wes Montgomery's L5 sound.
Gibson ES-165 Reissue
The Herb Ellis ES-175 model released in 1957 is now reissued as the es 165 reissue of the original 1957 ES-175 model. A Summary Of The ES-175
Here is a brief outline about the Gibson ES-175 model.
1. It was manufactured by Gibson Co. from the year 1949 to this present model.
2. It is a hollow body type and the neck joint is made of wood.
3. The body is either Maple, Poplar or Maple laminate.
4. The neck is of Mahogany and the fretboard is made from rosewood.
5. The bridge is fixed and the pickups were originally single coils and now two humbuckers are used.
6. The colors that were popular were Antique Natural, Vintage Sunburst and Wine Red.
7. It has an individual volume and tone control for each pickup and is fitted with a Schaler tuning heads.
My Thoughts About The Gibson ES-175
As a professional musician, I have owned and played many branded guitars. At the time of writing this article, I have in my possession more than twenty guitars. Every one of these twenty odd guitars is chosen for its excellent tones, and craftsmanship.
So far, I found that the Gibson 175 is a gem of an instrument made for perfect playing.
Playing through many gigs and shows, I always found the tone it produces adaptable to different genders of music. I usually have the ES 175 by my side. This is especially so for rock and fusion music.
I like to have my ES 175 hooked to the Dr. Zee amplifier as the kind of tone produced is just beautiful.
The Gibson ES-175 is indeed a 'true value for the money' buy. Its beauty, tone and excellent craftsmanship is amazing and is without a doubt, as I have mentioned earlier, a versatile masterpiece of a well-crafted amazing guitar.