Back to Gibson Vintage Guitars

Roy Bookbinders Gibson J 55

Product Code: 01001

Roy Bookbinder's 1941 Gibson J-55 (sold)

Pictured in "Gibson's Flattop Guitars" on page 53, clutched by the man himself, Roy Bookbinder....a famous American blues/ragtime fingerpicker, the J-55 is one rare guitar with less than 400 ever made from 1939 to 1942. Filling a void left by the demise of the Advanced Jumbo, the J-55 was the last "Jumbo" built by Gibson and featured some elements from the SJ-200 in it's first year.

A hybrid of sorts, it features a larger pickguard, bound neck and step molded brazilian rosewood bridge with a third centrally located pearl dot.  Solid mahogany rims and back with an Adirondack top and mahogany neck, the J-55 is so rare that most people in this world have never even seen one let alone having played one. Inlaid pearl Script logo and bound neck complete the hybrid thought. 2 tone bars unscalloped. 

I can tell you that it's a completely unique and very powerful voice indeed.  Fat and complex yet very articulate, this guitar is more powerful than either the J-35 or the banner J-45 and that is saying something. Monster bottom end with brilliant and powerful trebles don't in any way overwhelm the mid''s actually beautifully balanced but so powerful. 

All original excluding the tuners, which are of the period and correct, it shows playwear and some unexplainable very small holes in the top by the bridge, which it had all thru the time Roy owned the guitar.  The bridge plate on it is larger than we expect but is original to the guitar.  The J-55 had a larger plate installed to accomodate the larger bridge footprint.  One secure, cleated crack to the bottom bout. 

A very important guitar of reknown and one that will intrique the finest Gibson afficionado.  Purchased from the wife of a dear friend of Roy's who acquired it from him.