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Photo used by permission of David Perry Studio.

The Billy Gibbons “Pearly Gates” Les Paul

In 2009, the Gibson Custom shop built a limited run of Pearly Gates model guitars. These “inspired by” models were based on the legendary 1959 burst (SN 9 1171) owned and played by Billy F. Gibbons. Pearly’s singular voice can be heard on every ZZ Top album to date, and for years was front and center for countless tours and live appearances.

In the beginning of the process, Pat Foley and Edwin Wilson from the Gibson Custom Shop were allowed to inspect the original Pearly for a period of several days. Using digital scans, photographs and measurements, a total of 350 guitars were produced in the following designations: 250 VOS, 50 aged (by Tom Murphy), and 50 aged and signed by BFG.

The great care and meticulous attention to detail resulted in a line of guitars which are now considered by many to be some of the finest ever produced by the Gibson Custom Shop.

The purpose of this site is to share information on this particular model, and also to create a space for owners to share photos of their Pearly Gates guitar. My hope is to someday be able to feature photos of all 350 guitars. Have a look around, and feel free to drop me an email at the link below if you want to register your Pearly.