Zakk Wylde And Gibson Bring Maple And Vertigo To The Les Paul

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Zakk Wylde Custom Vertigo Maple

Zakk Wylde’s Gibson Les Paul Custom Vertigo

Zakk Wylde Custom Vertigo Maple
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A delight for the eyes – a dream for the ears. This beautiful machine comes straight from the twisted yet calculated confines of Zakk Wylde’s mind – and of course, now you can try it on and see what you can make it do.

Everything about the man is creative, varied and instinctive – his style, ranging from white hot velocity to crisp clean articulation.

Neck and Finish

The guitar itself has one thing right off the bat that I’ve got to talk about. The maple neck. It’s a feature that disappeared off the Les Pauls somewhere around the 80’s – and it’s one of my favorite things to see on a Les Paul. Right now, the maple neck is available on some other models as well – mostly the customs and classics. The maple fretboard / neck combination is a rarity for a Les Paul, and it’s going to make some pretty significant changes to the tone (and price, for the better) as well. The maple fretboard can also be found on Zakk’s Les Paul Custom Camo guitar as well.

It goes along with the natural maple top and it’s contrasted nicely with Zakk’s “twisted bullsye” design – and this is the first time you can get the bullseye on a Gibson – prior to this you had to purchase an Epiphone.

The back of the guitar is ebony black and all of this is Nitro Lacquer.

The neck is one piece – maple with a satin natural finish, so it’s not going to be sticky, and it also bears Zakk’s own rounded neck shape.

Electronics and Hardware

Zakk Wylde Vertigo Maple Les PaulFor electronics the Custom Vertigo offers an active EMG 85/81 H-H combination, with independent volume controls for each.

Tuning and intonation is kept in check with the usual Tune-O-Matic, topped off with Grover tuners.


As usual – it’s not cheap – or inexpensive. List is $3,799. However you’re going to find it on the street for much less than that – and because it doesn’t come out of the custom shop (and for various other reasons) it’s not quite as expensive as some other Les Pauls are known to be. For some, this might be the first Les Paul that’s affordable enough to make the choice to pull the trigger and walk home with.

With the maple on maple and light colored inlays – the gigantic sound you know it’s capable of – this baby might just be worth all that. What do you think?


Tim Monaghan

Tim has been playing guitar & bass since he was 12 years old and has been in Jazz, funk, rock & metal bands. Influences include Jeff Beck, Stanley Clarke, Doug Stegmeyer, Baden Powell, Steve Vai, and pretty much anyone else who has a unique style that expresses their individuality. One of Tim’s many hobbies is building, tweaking, and repairing basses and guitars.

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