This guitar is a Scott Lentz 'conversion' -- a 1955 Gold Top Les Paul modded and refinished to look like a vintage cherry sunburst '59, the Holy Grail of Les Pauls!
Prices of original '59 Bursts started going through the roof in the mid-80's, driven in part by post-war baby boomers going through a mid-life-crisis-guitar-acquisition phase. With prices casually breaching the $250K mark for an original sunburst 1959 Les Paul these days, it's no wonder that we don't see too many of them outside of their climate controlled vaults.
Modifying this 1955 Les Paul to '59 specs would have meant stripping off the Gold Top down to the bare wood, removing the P90 pickups and routing out the pickup cavities for humbuckers. A reset of the neck angle was also usually done to match the '59.
Surprisingly, quite a number of early Gold Top Les Pauls had immaculate, bookmatched, highly flamed maple tops underneath all that gold paint! I guess flame maple wasn't much of a selling point in those days.
And Phil X. Gotta love him. A little over the top, but what a huge talent. I would pay to go watch him play!
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