Gibson EB-2D Electric Bass Guitar (1967)

Gibson  EB-2D Electric Bass Guitar  (1967)
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Item # 11825
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Gibson EB-2D Model Electric Bass Guitar (1967), made in Kalamazoo, Michigan, serial # 090062, sunburst top, dark stained back and sides finish, laminated maple body, mahogany neck with rosewood fingerboard, original black hard shell case.

This is a stunningly clean all original example of one of the classic electric basses of the just-post British Invasion era: the sunburst finish Gibson EB-2D. The original single-pickup semi-hollow EB-2 was introduced as a companion to the ES-335 in 1958 but was not a big seller, and officially discontinued in 1961. It seems likely much of the remaining stock at the time was "dumped" overseas, many sent to Gibson's new UK distributor Selmer. The instrument unexpectedly became very popular in England with many emerging "Beat Group" players, leading to re-orders and a return to production in 1964. Over the next few years the totals ramped up dramatically, and this twin pickup model was added to the line in 1966 borrowing a more elaborate electronics layout from the solidbody EB-3.

This particular bass was built in 1967, the second year of the double pickup model when 422 were shipped out in sunburst finish. The EB-2D offers all the classic ED-2 features of the older models but has a MUCH more versatile sound, thanks to the small humbucking pickup fitted near the bridge. Combined with a three way switch, push-button choke for the neck pickup and individual volume and tone controls this gives the bass a very wide range of tones, from bright baritone to the massive thud of the giant "mudbucker" by itself.

Other features of this maple bodied, semi-hollow bass include a dark sunburst top, elevated pickguard, "witch hat" amp-style knobs, chrome one-piece metal bridge, mute assembly and chrome handrest over the back pickup. The mahogany neck has the much slimmer profile used in 1965 and after, with a 1 1/2" nut that feels rather like a Fender Jazz Bass. The lever-action mute is actually quite effective on this model; this one's original felt is unusually still intact.

In the early '60s large proportion of professional UK acts used the EB-2 or its Epiphone doppelganger, the Rivoli in the first years of the British invasion. This more versatile later EB-2D model still delivers the essential tones of the Animals, Yardbirds, Manfred Mann and beyond but has a far wider range of additional sounds available the single-pickup model cannot match. This is as nice a one of these as we have ever seen, complete in the original yellow lined Ess & Ess case (made right here in Brooklyn!)
Overall length is 44 3/4 in. (113.7 cm.), 16 1/4 in. (41.3 cm.) wide at lower bout, and 1 3/4 in. (4.4 cm.) in depth, measured at side of rim. Scale length is 30 in. (762 mm.). Width of nut is 1 1/2 in. (38 mm.).

This bass has seen some light use and very minor wear over the past 55 years but remains very clean, the nicest example of an EB-2D from this year we have seen. It is completely original with no repairs or alterations. The original finish still shines like it did in 1967, the hardware has only very minor tarnish overall. There are very light scratches and scuff overall with a few small dings and dents to the edges of the headstock back of the neck, with some minor belt buckle scuffing and sweat wear to the back. The bridge adjustment screws have some corrosion and screwdriver marks to the slots in the top.

The electronics including the sometimes finicky 2-way baritone switch all perform as they should. The original frets have some light wear and still play fine. This bass sounds and plays exactly as it did in the 1960s, with a huge room filling thump which if desired but with a range of other options most Gibson basses do not match. The black gold-lined OHSC is intact showing some external wear. This lovely near-time capsule bass was bought second hand in 1971, used for a short time and put away for 50 or so years, now just awakened from its long rest, cleaned, tweaked and ready to provide classic low end for the 21st Century! Overall Excellent + Condition.