Gary Moore’s Guitars—Up-Close and In Action

January 21st, 2016


By Christopher Scapelliti

A selection of Gary Moore’s guitars, amps, cabinets and pedals will go up for auction later this year.

When the Belfast-born guitarist died in 2011, he left behind a wealth of gear. While some of the more important pieces—such as a 1959 Gibson Les Paul—will be retained by his estate, much of the gear will go under the hammer, offering guitarists, collectors and fans a chance to own a piece of history.

Moore’s longtime guitar tech Graham Lilley spoke with Guitar magazine about the gear and filmed a video for the publication in which he shows and demos several of Moore’s guitars that will go on the auction block. The video, presented below, shows a custom Gibson Les Paul—“Collector’s Choice Number One, Artist Proof Number 3”—made for Moore and modeled after the famed 1959 Les Paul he purchased from Fleetwood Mac’s Peter Green in the Seventies (now owned by Metallica’s Kirk Hammett). Other guitars shown include Moore’s 1963 Stratocaster with a stripped body refinished in clear lacquer, his 1959 Les Paul Jr. and his 1964 Firebird.

The video also includes a demo of Moore’s second 1959 Gibson Les Paul, used on his 1990 album Still Got the Blues, which is not up for auction.

Lilley tells Guitar that he is still working out details of how to make the items available for auction. “A chunk of it will be retained by the estate for the time being,” he says. “But there’s a lot of stuff left and it’s made to be played, to make a noise with, so somebody should make a noise with it.

“It’s just trying to find the best way to do it. Some of it might find its way to auction websites, so anybody can bid on it, fans for example, and get a little piece of that heritage.”

In addition, he says, “Quite a few of the bits have been viewed by one of the top-end auction houses. What will actually go in the sale is unclear at this moment.

“We’re possibly looking at June, but there’s no reason that the less-documented stuff couldn’t go out before that.”

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  1. Posted by John-Michael Kaye on January 22nd, 2016, 09:49 [Reply]

    The 1964 Firebird 1 is the one I would bet my house on – it looks almost mint because it’s set up for slide (purposeful higher action) so it probably didn’t get played that much except in sliding situations. In closing, Gary Moore was one of my all-time favorite guitar players for a number of reasons besides the fact that he could out rip the baddest guitarists of the day – his friendship w/ Michael Schenker, for example. I still got the blues for you, Gary – rest in peace.


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