Since forming the seeds of Aerosmith with Tom Hamilton in the late 60s, there has been no looking back for Joe Perry. He had already become the lead guitarist of one of the enduring rock music groups by 1970.
As a principal songwriter and electrifying lead guitarist of the band, he has achieved permanent iconic stature in the pantheon of rock music. There’s no denying that Perry has helped drive the band to the sales of more than 150 million records worldwide, four Grammys, induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of fame and several other key milestones.
Everything about him is fascinating for fans, including his music career, a line of hot sauces, autobiography, his membership in Alice Cooper’s Hollywood Vampires and more. Apart from that, his massive guitar collection is also a subject of interest to many. Perry, who took up the guitar at 10, greatly influenced by The Beatles, has collected a wide array of guitars. With a whopping net worth of $120 million, reportedly, he has somewhere near 600 guitars in his collection that includes various models of Les Pauls, Fenders and Gibsons.
Here’s the list of 10 of Perry’s favorite guitars.
#10. 1959 Gibson Les Paul
This guitar was his main guitar with Aerosmith during the 1970s. When he went broke in the Christmas of 1981, he had to sell the guitar. Later, he searched for the guitar and found that Guns N’ Roses guitarist, Slash had his signature piece. He tried getting it back from him begging to sell it back numerous times, but that didn’t help.
That almost strained their relationship and he eventually gave up. However, Slash surprised Perry on his 50th birthday when he returned the guitar as a gift.
#9. Gibson B.B. King “Lucille” Custom
Perry customized this model with the signature of his beloved wife, Billie Perry on the headstock and her photo on the front. In an interview, talking about the guitar, he said, “I wanted to put the most beautiful woman I could find on there, so naturally, I chose my wife.”
However, to his disappointment, when he gave it to Billie, she hated it and could not come out of the Aerosmith dressing rooms when he used it. According to him, she is okay with it now though.
“It’s also the most unique guitar because there is only one of them in the whole world. She's gorgeous, the guitar is gorgeous - how can I not look good playing it?”
#8. Gibson Custom Joe Perry Boneyard Les Paul
This model replaced his 1990s Les Paul, which was made by Gibson in 2004. This Gibson has a “Green Tiger” finish with a vintage cream binding, Kluson-style tulip button tuners and aged nickel hardware. His wife had it custom made for him and gifted to him in the Christmas. The guitar’s neck has a BurstBucker 2 pickup and the Bridge has a BurstBucker 3 for hotter tones. Boneyard is also the name of Perry’s hot sauce.
#7. Joe Perry BlackBurst Les Paul
Perry got this guitar in 1997. It has a hand-stained Translucent BlackBurst finish which emphasizes stunningly figured maple tops. Perry had the bridge pickup custom wound to his specifications.
The guitar includes an active mid-boost tone-shaping circuit, accessible with a master tone control and a push/pull pot. Perry said that he didn’t change it a lot since it was already a great guitar. This guitar is now out of production and is hard to find a secondhand piece as well.
#6. Bullets & Bones
This was custom-made for Perry by R.S. Guitarworks. He explained how he named the guitar in a tweet in 2013 that read, “My guitar with leather is custom made maple. I named it Bullets & Bones. Cause the knobs are antler & cut shell cases from a 44 Cowboy.”
The brown guitar has studs in the body, a Fralin P-90 in the bridge and Joe Barden pickups in the middle and neck. It is also one of his favorite guitars.
#5. Ampeg Dan Armstrong Plexi Electric Guitar
This guitar made of plexiglass was once Perry’s mainstay. All the pickups of this guitar are custom made and the only difference between this and the original one is that pickups can be easily replaced just by sliding them, in place. It was used in Aerosmith’s fifth studio album, Draw the Line. When one thinks of guitarist, Joe Perry, he also may think of this signature piece.
#4. Supro Ozark 1560S Electric Guitar
Perry says that Supro Ozark is one of the best slide guitars ever made and likes this model more than his Dan Armstrong see-through. He has a lot of cheap and funky electric guitars like Supros, Teiscos and Danelectros, which he enjoys collecting and playing.
Perry has not one but two of this model, an old one and a reissue. He bought a red Belmont from a kid in 2009 for $250 and had it rewired and set up for the slide by David Petillo. He wrote the basic parts to Aerosmith’s Rag Doll on a Supro. One of the most memorable songs written on the guitar is Monkey on My Back. Perry can also be seen using a Supro Ozark in the music video for Shakin' My Cage.
#3. 1960 Cherry Stereo ES-335
Perry, a tone aficionado for decades, has an array of Gibsons ES and Les Paul models. In an interview, he said that he owns a 1960 cherry stereo ES-335 with Bigsby, which he got as a birthday present from his wife. Later, he took the guitar on road with him.
#2. Custom-built, Ebony Les Paul Axcess
This is his self-designed custom-built guitar, which he played on the 11th season finale of American Idol, in 2012, where they debuted their new single, Legendary Child. The band also performed Walk This Way at that time. The guitar is equipped with a burst bucker pickup and one knob that caters for the tone controls and volume.
#1. Gibson EB-6 Baritone
This guitar was made in 1959 and 60. Perry used the guitar for the solo on King of the Kings, a song from the Joe Perry Project’s album, Once a Rocker, Always a Rocker in 1983.
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