Just Discovered: The 2015 Les Paul CM

Discussion in 'Les Paul Discussion Page' started by duceditor, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. duceditor

    duceditor New Member

    Back in the `60s, when my musical mark was most clearly made, I was a Gibson man. Interestingly so were most of my musician friends. Back then West Coast guys played Fenders. We in the East played Gibsons.

    Time changed that some. I always played both types of guitars, but in truth had for some time become a 'Tele man.' Then, as I returned to my roots (something many of us do at a certain age) I became a "offset" man. Jazzmaster and Jaguars were what I most often played. Then a strange thing happened.

    Basically I returned to my own music. The stuff I had been writing for myself. Teles worked for this, yes, but somehow in some way I discovered the Junior.

    Mine was an Epiphone -- a less expensive 'copy' of a guitar meant to be "less expensive" from its start.

    Less expensive they may have been, but boy did they rock!

    I likely would have been content to stay right where I was, but then an unlikely thing happened: I discovered a Gibson that I'd never, ever, heard of and it has set my musical world afire. That guitar is the 2015 Les Paul CM.

    Have you heard of it?

    Very possibly not.

    If not, here's the scoop...

    The "CM " was made in limited numbers. So says the Gibson website. It's sort of a "Junior" in that has just one PUP and it was priced pretty low. But unlike the Junior its body is made with the two-wood approach that has long graced the Les Paul. -A mahogany base 'capped' with a carved maple top. (Some say that is what "CM" means -- "Carved Maple." ???)

    The shape is pure Les Paul, but the body is thinner. Thinner even, at least on the edges, than a Junior. But due to the maple it is a little bit heavier than a Junior. And the CM's set neck is maple too. With a meaty contour. Nice!

    The Les Paul CM, like the Junior, has only one PUP. But its is not a P90. No, its a bright and sassy "`61 Zebra" -- a coverless humbucker with coils said to match those found ion the best of Gibson's early `60s builds, with asymmetrical windings that favor the screw side.

    The 3rd thing that makes the Les Paul CM unique is its finish. The sides, back, neck and headstock are all finished with a thin, but hard as nails, ebony satin. The face (or "top" -- the word Gibson seems to prefer) is also ebony black, but it is a stain. -One that allows the maple's grain to show through in places. And those places quickly expand because the stain is prone to quick wear.

    The fingerboard is a thick and fine piece of oiled rosewood, expertly fretted. Unbound. And with simple "dot" inlays.

    Being a 2015 the guitar is, naturally, fitted with G-Force tuners. But in the case of the Les Paul CM a standard nut was used -- one made of a self-lubricating material. The tuners work wonderfully on automatic. Manually they are slow with a crude, rough, feel.

    The entire story as officially told -- with pix -- can be seen here. But the guitar's real glory -- and glory it is! -- can only be experienced with it in hand, doing just what it was meant to do: ROCK.

    The body is, to this player at least, perfection. Just the right size. Just the right weight. And comfortable. (It has a beautifully designed 'tummy tuck' sculpted in.) So perfect is the body, and the way it balances with the neck, that the guitar just disappears leaving only the music in the player's mind. Just what a good guitar should do -- again, at least in this player's opinion.

    The neck is meaty, but fast. And it comes with some unusual for a Gibson strings: Ultra lights (9) going up to a regular weight (46). The nut is cut perfectly for these strings. They fit the guitar perfectly both as to sound and feel.

    Gibson's PLEK process did what was intended to. Even though this guitar had sat in a warehouse for two years mine was almost perfectly setup out of the box. A tweak to the truss rod made that perfection complete.

    And the PUP... oh, that PUP! Almost P90ish in its tone. Bright and punchy. Sassy! But a bit fuller. And quiet.

    If I sound like I am waxing lyrical it is because I am. If it sounds like I am madly in love with this guitar, well yeah... that too.

    Just one man's opinion, of course. And not everyone's proverbial 'cup of tea.' But if you love raw rock and roll you owe yourself to find one of these.

    Well, if you can. They were, as stated above, made in only limited numbers. And they are thus rare, rare, rare.

    To end with a pic -- what better ending can there be? -- here is my own, slightly "worn" (through a vigorous rubdown with a soft microfiber cloth) and slightly "aged" with Old English Polish...


  2. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    You've pretty much described my 2014 Melody Maker. It's the identical guitar but with regular Kluson tuners and two P90S pickups. Mine is finished in an opaque satin TV Yellow. The thing is so comfortable to play and it really screams. Setup was perfect out of the box. The only problems I had with it were a few sharp fret ends (from being is a dry warehouse most likely) which Long and Mcquade immediately corrected for me and I found that I would get a crackling sound if I rubbed the finish around the knobs or the pickups, mainly in the winter when the furnace dries the air. I also get this on my expensive Gibson ES137 Custom too so it's not a flaw. Just keep a Bounce sheet handy to rub down the areas where you tend to touch the guitar.

    I changed the knobs to Gibson "reflectors" and added a pickguard to mine. I later change the tuners to Grover "split shafts" like the vintage Fenders are equipped with.
    Here is my post:
  3. duceditor

    duceditor New Member

    Nice post on your MM. Nice geetar too!

  4. Infant

    Infant Active Member

    Thanks! But I gotta tell you, these low cost Gibby's are serious rockers. They are comfortable, light and they can really scream. Play it hard!!

    Sent from my SM-T530NU using Tapatalk
  5. SAguitar

    SAguitar Active Member

    The man has found his Muse. Congratulations!

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