Bruce Johnson from Toronto sent me these pics of his Les Paul which he has owned for 17 years. Apart from the fact that it has a blue sparkle finish with a killer whale motif (!), it’s interesting from a back-story point of view. In Bruce’s own words:
The story I heard from the guy I bought it from was the the fellow who painted it did four guitars like this. One for Clapton (supposedly a Strat), one for Rick Nielsen of Cheap Trick (an Explorer), one for Jimmy Page ( a tele) and the one I have, with no word on who the supposedly famous guitarist was that it was owned by or intended for.
Makes for a fun story with no way of backing it up, and all the research I’ve done leads to dead ends …. except … Clapton had a Strat that he sold in one of his auctions. The last I heard, the Hard Rock chain had it at their Chicago location. I’ve seen pictures of it and it has airbrushed snow leopards within a gold metallic sparkle paint scheme and looks like a brother to my LP. Spooky.
As for the guitar? There’s something in the wood, it weighs a ton (5 kilos actually) and would completely impractical to play with live. But sitting down with it on your knee it plays beautifully and sounds gorgeous.