New epiphone headstock

New epiphone headstock DEFAULT

Epiphone returns to the Kalamazoo headstock for its Gibson-type models

Comparte este artículo en

Epiphone has announced and shown the new but old Kalamazoo headstock as this was already used by the brand in its early years. This head is much more similar to the “Open Book” -Open book- used by Gibson in the Les Paul, SG and other models.

Back to the roots, more vintage, more Gibson

New Kalamzoo tuners, taken from those used in the 1930s.

The largest headstock will now be featured on all Gibson-inspired instruments as part of an overview of the entire Epiphone range for 2020. And it’s not just looking more like Gibson, it’s going back to the headstock you used in its early years.

Thus Gibson has announced a massive overhaul of its Epiphone brand for NAMM 2020, the most notable of which is the introduction of a new, larger headstock shape for its Epiphone Les Paul and SG models and all original Gibson models.3

Shovel similar to Gibson’s “open book”

The ‘Kalamazoo’ headstock shape was originally used on Epiphone guitars, Gibson’s second brand, in 1930. In September, Gibson’s Marketing Director (CMO), Argentine César Gueikian, had advanced something on his Instagram account.

The shape of the Kalamazoo headstock is much more like the famous ‘open book’ shape that Gibson uses on their guitars, and makes these new instruments look much more like their more expensive older siblings – something fans have long desired. many years.

New Epiphone Les Paul with Kalamazoo headstock.

The new Epiphone guitars with Kalamazoo headstocks are part of the ‘Inspired By Gibson Collection’. Gibson has said that each guitar in the new collection has been redesigned from the original blueprints and features improved electronics and classic finishes.

Within this new collection that will come with the new blade similar to the Gibson are:

  • Epiphone Les Paul Junior,
  • Les Paul Special,
  • Les Paul Studio,
  • Les Paul Modern,
  • Les Paul Standard 50s,
  • Les Paul Standard 60s,
  • SG Special,
  • SG Standard and
  • SG Standard 61 with Maestro
New Gibson-inspired Epiphone models with Kalamazoo machine heads, more similar to open book.

Also part of the “Inspired By Gibson” collection: Explorer, Firebird and Flying V.

Of course, Epiphone is more than just Gibson derivative instruments. The brand has created many iconic instruments in its long and storied history, and those guitars are represented by the new Epiphone Original collection.

New Range of Masterbuild Acoustic Guitars

As if that wasn’t enough for a single session, Epiphone is also launching a new range of Masterbuilt acoustics inspired by the brand’s classics from the ’60s. A new ES Collection ES UpTown Kat derived from ES and the Les Paul and SG Muse Collection, aimed at entry level players.

American-made Epiphone Masterbuild Acoustic with Kalamazoo headstock.

New Epiphone Series Made in the USA

This new collection is headlined by a Texas acoustic guitar that is once again being made in the United States. Gibson has made several limited-run Epiphone guitars in the USA. USA Thus, it will launch the new Epiphone Made In USA range that will offer the classic designs of the brand with American construction.

Epiphone, Les Paul and their early relationship

“We are evolving Epiphone and launching it with a new look and new collections. We go back to basics to simplify the collections at Epiphone Originals and Epiphone Inspired by Gibson, ”said Gueikian of the new range. Les Paul himself began working on his own solid body electric guitar at the Epiphone factory on 14th Street, New York in 1941. It culminated in the ‘Log’ that influenced Gibson to create the Les Paul model a decade later, arguably the greatest iconic guitar of all time. We are paying tribute to this heritage. “

For more information, head over to Epiphone.

Related Articles: Gibson Les Paul vs Epiphone Les Paul: features and differences.

You can share opinions or also chat about this and more with other musicians in our comments section.

Comparte este artículo en


Gibson is planning a major change to the entire Epiphone guitar line-up

Despite a PR misfireor two, Gibson has had a positive 2019, overhauling its entire range and bringing it in closer in line with what guitarists actually want - and a surprise statement from CMO Cesar Gueikian indicates there could be good news for Epiphone fans, too.

In a recent Instagram post, Gueikian shared a picture of a host of classic Gibson and Epiphone parts, including scratchplates, pickup selector rings and vintage Epiphone headstocks.

When Instagram user cwwoodhead commented, “You should switch all the Epi headstock[s] to that shape”, Gueikian issued a brief but telling response: “it’s coming”.

For many players, the open-book headstock design that appears on vintage Epiphone models and modern-day Gibson guitars is classier than the slightly blockier Epi variant that tops off the majority of the lower-cost company’s range.

So the news that the entire Epiphone range will now bear a closer - although not identical - resemblance to Gibson’s line-up is most welcome news indeed, and even indicates a vintage-spec’d refresh could be on the cards, along the lines of what Gueikian enacted with Gibson’s well-received 2019 series.

Tellingly, when Epiphone relaunched the Del Rey Double Cut as the DC Pro earlier this year, the company changed the headstock from the Epiphone original to a slightly elongated open-book design.

This could also be a serious power play from Gibson to overtly showcase Epiphone’s Gibson DNA and clearly differentiate it from other mid-priced Les Paul and 335-style guitars - especially in the wake of the company's clampdown on counterfeits, and ongoing lawsuit against Dean Guitars.

We have one more addendum to that Gueikian post, though: can we get a Fuzz-Tone reissue, too, pretty please?

Mike is Digital Editor-in-Chief of Guitar World, having spent eight years contributing to guitar journalism and a decade-and-a-half performing in bands of variable genre (and quality). He has written and edited for MusicRadar, Total Guitar and Guitarist, and makes prog-ish instrumental rock under the nom de plume Maebe.

  1. Fairfax auto salvage
  2. Target ad lubbock
  3. Hourly weather pensacola
  4. Milw weather hourly
  5. Ga honey farm

Epiphone’s “Inspired by Gibson Collection”: More Than Just a New Headstock

There’s a new headstock in town, and it’s not just this new shape we’re excited about. Announced at Winter NAMM 2020, Epiphone followed Gibson’s lineup restructuring and streamlined their instruments into the “Inspired by Gibson” Collection.

Not only do the guitars now look more reminiscent of their Gibson counterparts, Epiphone have also taken a page from Gibson’s famous “open book” headstock, something which many fans have been hoping for for years.

No thanks to the age old slogan “Only a Gibson is good enough”, Epiphone have had to graft their own identity despite having identical models as their more expensive sibling. They’ve come a long way – from its famous TV appearance with John Lennon on “Top of the Pops” to being mainstay guitars for players like Gary Clark Jr and Matt Heafy.

It’s not surprising that, perhaps, we might be seeing Epiphone at its zenith today with their “Inspired by Gibson” Collection. Let’s take a look at this new range of Epiphones, which have just arrived in our Swee Lee stores amid lots of intrigue and excitement.

Epiphone “Inspired by Gibson” Collection

The “Inspired by Gibson” collection includes the Epiphone Original Collection and the Epiphone Modern Collection. As its name suggests, these guitars look and feel closer to the more expensive and US-made Gibsons than before.

Original Collection

The Original Collection looks every bit the part and features classic finishes and upgraded electronics – for starters, CTS electronics come as standard.

Epiphone Les Paul Custom Electric Guitar, Ebony

The coveted and classy Black Beauty, slung by players like Jimmy Page and John Fogerty, first made its debut in 1954. The new Epiphone Inspired by Gibson Les Paul Custom features the same Custom-style mahogany body and ebony fingerboard as the original, and is outfitted with a pair of PAF-esque ProBucker pickups.

Epiphone Les Paul Standard 50s Electric Guitar, Heritage Cherry Sunburst

Inspired by the world’s most valuable guitar, the Les Paul Standard 50s is as close as it gets without spending Gibson Custom Shop prices. The finishes available are classic, the CTS pots are wired 50s style and the neck profile is modelled after the original ‘59 Les Paul. It even has a long neck tenon, once only available on the highest end guitars Gibson make! 

Epiphone Firebird Electric Guitar, Vintage Sunburst

Undeniably cool, Epiphone’s take on this Firebird is inspired by the 1963 classic. The original was designed by famed automotive designer Ray Dietrich and featured quirks that were decades ahead of its time. Epiphone honours this classic with authentic contours, period-correct finish and ProBucker mini-humbuckers.

Epiphone SG Standard ’61 Electric Guitar, Vintage Cherry

From Angus Young to Santana, the SG is a rock icon immortalised through the years, none more illustrious than the 1961 SG – the year it first launched. Spec’d with Alnico II ProBuckers and a solid mahogany body for authentic vintage grunt, this package presents a high-quality, bang-for-buck axe ready for any occasion.

Modern Collection

Past meets present in the Modern Collection. This is where you’ll find daring finishes and more player-centric features. The guitars come equipped with push/pull pots, weight relieved bodies, slim taper necks, and eye catching finishes.

Epiphone Les Paul Modern Electric Guitar, Faded Pelham Blue

Aside from the brilliant Faded Pelham Blue finish, the new Les Paul Modern is decked out with features that were never considered traditional, but are practical and made for the players of today. For starters, the neck profile is an asymmetrical slim taper, accumulating at a contoured heel for the comfortable high fret access. Tonal options are aplenty, with coil-splitting, phase switching, and a treble bleed circuit available at pull of a knob. Oh, and locking tuners never hurt anyone, too!

Epiphone SG Modern Figured Electric Guitar, Trans Black Fade

You’ll find some of the prettiest finishes in the Modern Collection, and this SG’s Trans Black finish perfectly captures the flames on its AAA flame maple veneer top. Like the Les Pauls, the SG Modern comes with all the tone altering features like coil-splitting, phase switching and CTS electronics.

Epiphone Les Paul Muse Electric Guitar, Wanderlust Green Metallic

A completely new name in the Epiphone lineup, the Les Paul Muse might be the most radical of the Modern Collection. Its seven different striking metallic finishes are just a start – the Muse features a slimmer, lightweight, resonant chambered okoume body with a body contour and is powered by a pair of Alnico Classic PRO humbuckers for those who need a little extra output. 

Swee Lee is stoked to have the “Inspired by Gibson” Collection available in stores. The best way to experience these fantastic instruments is to try them out for yourself by heading down to one of our Swee Lee stores. Or, you can check out the collection online here.


Watch: Epiphone’s new Inspired By Gibson Les Pauls and its 2020 line of guitars

UPDATE (30/1): Find all the details on these Epiphone 2020 guitars here.

NAMM 2020:Gibson has announced a massive overhaul of its Epiphone brand for NAMM 2020, most notable of which is the introduction of a new larger headstock shape for its Gibson-derived Epiphone Les Paul and SG models.

The ‘Kalamazoo’ headstock shape was originally used on the guitars made for the Gibson budget brand of the same name in the 1930s, and as we reported back in September, has teased by Gibson CMO Cesar Gueikian as a key part of the brand’s overhaul.

The Kalamazoo shape is much closer to the famous ‘open book’ shape of the Gibson originals, and makes these new instruments feel much closer to their more expensive siblings – something that fans have been requesting for many years.

The new Kalamazoo-headstocked guitars are part of the ‘Inspired By Gibson Collection’, which collects all the Gibson-derived guitars in the Epiphone range. Gibson claims that each guitar in the new collection has been redesigned from the original blueprints and features upgraded electronics and classic finishes.

Featuring the new Kalamazoo headstock addition in the range are the Epiphone Les Paul Junior, Les Paul Special, SG Special, Les Paul Standard 50s, Les Paul Standard 60s, SG Standard and 61 SG Standard w/Maestro.

Also part of the Inspired By Gibson Collection are the Designer Collection Explorer, Firebird and Flying V as well as a Les Paul Studio and Les Paul Modern (both of which will feature the Kalamazoo headstock).

Of course, Epiphone is about more than just Gibson-derived instruments – the brand has created many iconic instruments in its long and storied history, and those guitars are represented by the new Epiphone Original collection.

This new collection is being headlined by a Texan acoustic guitar that is once again being made in the USA. Gibson has made several limited-run Epiphone guitars in the USA over the years, but this guitar, made in the Gibson Acoustic factory in Montana, will kick off the new Epiphone Made In USA range that will offer the brand’s classic designs with American build.

As if that wasn’t enough for one sitting, Epiphone is also releasing a new range of Masterbuilt acoustics inspired by the brand’s 60s classics, a new ES-derived UpTown Kat ES Collection, and the Les Paul and SG Muse Collection, aimed at entry-level players.

“We are evolving Epiphone and unleashing it with a new look and new collections. We are going back to basics simplifying the collections into Epiphone Originals and Epiphone Inspired by Gibson,” said Gueikian of the new range.

“Les Paul himself started working on his own solidbody electric guitar at the Epiphone factory on 14th Street, New York City back in 1941. It culminated with the ‘Log’ which influenced Gibson to create the Les Paul model a decade later, arguably the most iconic guitar of all time. We are paying tribute to this heritage.”

Listen to Gibson CEO JC Curleigh talk about the rejuvenated brand here:


For more visit

Check out all NAMM 2020 news here.


Headstock new epiphone

Approximate reading time: 2 Minutes

Epiphone brings the Kalamazoo headstock to new Inspired By Gibson Collection

Epiphone brings the Kalamazoo headstock to new Inspired By Gibson Collection  ·  Source: Epiphone

Epiphone is launching its new Inspired By Gibson Collection and these 2020 models will now feature what they are calling the Kalamazoo headstock.

Inspired By Gibson Collection

If you follow my articles you may well remember the announcement last September that Epiphone headstocks – including the Les Paul guitars – would be getting an overhaul at some point in the future. Well, the future is now and in 2020 we will start to see the new Kalamazoo headstock as part of the Inspired By Gibson Collection.

Epiphone Les Paul Custom Ebony, Epiphone Les Paul Special TV Yellow

Epiphone Les Paul Custom Ebony, Epiphone Les Paul Special TV Yellow

Kalamazoo headstock?

It looks like we may well get to see this redesigned headstock shape during Winter NAMM and find out which models will be carrying it from now on. The new Kalamazoo headstock shape is a lot closer to the famous ‘open book’ shape of the Gibson USA models. However, it isn’t a direct copy, so there is still some distinction between the two brands, which I feel is a bit of a cop out.

You can see the new Epiphone Les Paul Custom Ebony and Les Paul Special TV Yellow in the photo above, to get an idea of what to expect. The whole new range includes the Epiphone Les Paul Junior, Les Paul Special, SG Special, Les Paul Standard 50s, Les Paul Standard 60s, SG Standard and a 61 SG Standard w/Maestro.

Epiphone brings the Kalamazoo headstock to new Inspired By Gibson Collection

Epiphone brings the Kalamazoo headstock to new Inspired By Gibson Collection

Nearly there, but not quite

As an aside, it’s interesting that Gibson is still using the headstock to differentiate its more affordable models from its premium guitars. PRS, for example, has the same headstock shape for all their guitar models, whether they are USA-made Core, S2, or import SE guitars. They even added the Paul Reed Smith signature to the logo of all models back in 2017. Fender, of course, has used the same headstock shape on all its models, including Squier instruments.

Gibson CMO Cesar Gueikian was the man who originally suggested last year that the new Epiphone headstock shape would come more in line with Gibson’s. Tell us what you think below, as I would be interested to know what players around the world feel about this latest Epiphone announcement.

More Information

Gearnews NAMM 2020 Videos Sponsors Banner

Gearnews NAMM 2020 Videos Sponsors


by Jef

Tags from this post

News GTR Epiphone 335 Cesar Gueikian headstock Les Paul Les Paul Special Les Paul Standard '50s Les Paul Standard '60s NAMM 2020 Open Book SG SG Special Winter NAMM 2020
Epiphone 2020, New Headstock? - LETS DISCUSS!

NAMM 2020: Epiphone Roundup

Published on 16 January 2020

It’s going to be a big year for Epiphone.

There’s a new headstock in town.

Yes, the rumours are true. Epiphone are shaking up their entire range, and the headstock re-design is just the beginning!

Indeed, Epiphone’s plan is to align themselves more clearly with the current Gibson collections of guitars, so it’s a case of ‘everything changes, and mostly stays pretty similar’. Confused? You won’t be. Let’s have a look!


The Headstock

So, the new headstock design applies to all guitars based on Gibson classics (apart from Explorers and so on, as you’d expect). Epiphone are evoking their heritage mythology by naming this new headstock shape the ‘Kalamazoo’ headstock. You’ll see this on all Les Pauls, SGs and such.

USA Casino

The other big news is the return of select Epiphone models being made in America! You'll find news about Texan acoustic a little further down, but for now, here are a few entirely exclusive shots of the Casino!


THis is the first time in decades that Epiphone have been made on US soil. We expect them to be high quality pieces!

Inspired By Gibson

The ‘Inspired by Gibson’ range includes the Epiphone Original Collection and the Epiphone Modern Collection. Much like you find with Gibson, Epiphone’s Original Collection is made up of Les Paul Standards, SG’s, Jnrs and the ‘Designer’ models: the Flying V, the Explorer and the Firebird.

Les Paul Standard

The Les Paul Standard is now available in 50s and 60s iterations, with different specs and finishes for each. For example, the 50s LP Standard has a slightly chunkier '59 style neck and can be had as a gold top, as below... well as two lovely burst finishes. The 60s model, with a slimmer neck carve, loses the Gold in favour of Ebony, and the bursts are slightly different: it’s Bourbon Burst and Iced Tea for this model. Both styles have AA Flame tops, Grover tuners and ProBucker pickups. CTS pots under the hood are a serious level-up, too!


The Epiphone SG is available is a pretty kickass Standard model with a full ‘batwing’ pickguard and the three finishes you actually want an SG in: Cherry, Ebony and, excellently, White! Great idea! Alnico Pro humbuckers have been chosen here, which is fantastic: we’ve seen these on previous Epiphones and they more than deliver.

There is also a very tempting 61-style SG with a Maestro tremolo! Accurate styling and vintage voiced ProBucker pickups work together to conjure a historic vibe. Doors fans, you’re guitar has arrived...


SG Custom

Is this the coolest of the whole lot? Maybe! Wow! The SG really suits being given the ‘Custom’ treatment: Ebony and Gold, block inlays, split diamond headstock inlay...this is flat-out great. Alnico Classic Pro humbuckers and CTS electronics bring quality to accompany those handsome looks, and a genuine Ebony fingerboard seals the deal.


Juniors/ Specials

Epiphone have a single pickup Les Paul Junior (single cut) for you, in Vintage Sunburst AND a two pickup Special in TV Yellow! CTS electronics definitely add to the vaue here.There is also a fantastic two pickup SG Special, available with a bound neck and two brilliant metallic finishes like the Faded Pelham Blue below. 

Our intrepid team with their 'boots on the ground' in Anaheim have managed to get their greasy hands on a particularly tasty Les Paul Junior in TV Yellow. Iconic? Definitely.

Modern Collection

The Epiphone Modern collection is home to less overtly traditional models. You’ll see some beautiful Les Pauls that bear more than a slight resemblance to the Gibson models of the same name...

The Les Paul Modern is weight relieved and features coil-splits, treble bleed and phase circuitry as well as ProBuckers and an Ebony fingerboard. Goodness!

The Les Paul Studio is also a part of the Modern Collection. It’s looking good, with Alnico Classic humbuckers and the same great finishes (including Smokehouse Burst) as the Gibson model. Grover machineheads and no binding make this a Les Paul built for the trenches.

Classic & Worn

The Epiphone Les Paul Classic is available in new satin ‘worn’ finishes, like the gorgeous Worn Metallic Gold and the excellently bold Worn Purple! Alnico Classic Pro pickups feature, as does a slim C neck profile.

The SG Classic Worn P90 is exactly what the title says, with an open grain finish that’s available in Cherry or Inverness Green. A pair of P90 Pro pickups deliver an original and satisfying voice to this instrument, which looks like us to be a real player’s guitar!

Les Paul and SG Muse

The Muse range is completely new, and is designed to be lightweight, versatile and eye-catching. Both the Les Paul (it’s weight-relieved) and the SG are included, and both feature coil splitting, phase switches and metallic colours that reach far beyond ‘standard’: check out Wanderlust Green or Purple Passion Metallic to get a fresh eyeful of ‘new’! These are bold, beautiful and we love them!

ES Models

News of the Semis are coming as to us so we'll get more soon, but for now, here's a sneaky peek from Epiphone's stand at the show...


Tommy Thayer Signature

This Kiss lead guitarist continues his association with Epiphone, this time bringing us a none-more-sparkly Blue Les Paul. It is one handsome guitar for sure! Mirrored hardware and Seymour Duncan pickups make this one for the brightest of stages!

USA Acoustics

Yes indeed! Epiphone, originally an American company of course, are starting up limited runs of US-made instruments! The first we’ve seen are a brace of acoustics, based on the famous Texan. These will be made in Montana, by Gibson’s acoustic guitar makers. It’s quite a coup for Epiphone and is a respectful nod to their own significant heritage.

The Texan is available in Natural, as shown above, and also a rich Vintage Sunburst. The Texan has a solid Spruce top and a nitrocellulose finish, along with nice details like parallelogram inlays and an under saddle LR Baggs VTC pickups system. We look forward to seeing this and more coming from Epiphone’s US runs!



So, there’s plenty to get excited about with Epiphone this year! This is just some of the guitars that have been revealed: there are more being announced all the time, and other phases to the Epiphone ‘reboot’ that have not even been spoken about yet, so keep an eye on our site for more news as and when it happens!

Until then


Ray McClelland


You will also like:

sookwinder wrote: ↑

Mon Jan 13, 2020 2:29 am

Maybe I am a little thick/dumb today ... but I do not understand.

As shown below there are three different Kalamazoo Epiphone headstock variants.
The initial one similar to the normal Gibson headstock, as shown with my Sorrento this also had the bikini plate.
The next variation is a slight elongation of the first, without the plate.
The last is the hourglass version that we all know.

So how is THIS particular headstock that Gibson is now using on epi gtrs "the" Kalamazoo headstock?
They all are ...

I guess I might be a little dumb today also because I was assuming that they were using the headstock from one of the various guitars that they sold under the "Kalamazoo" name over the years.

You can see what I'm talking about here for an example, but I seem to have been misunderstanding.

I don't know what's up with these headstocks. I can say that I like what Gibson is doing with Epiphone, it seems that they are heading in a direction where the Epiphone guitars are considered to be every bit as well made as Gibsons, but you get the benefit of overseas construction keeping the cost down.

If you call that a benefit. You know what I mean.

Regardless, back in the day Epiphones were pretty bad guitars, and that turned me off the brand permanently. But now I feel like there are any number of things made under that marque that I would consider buying.

Back in those days, everyone knew that if you were talking about Destiny's Child, you were talking about Beyonce, LaTavia, LeToya, and Larry.


1050 1051 1052 1053 1054