« Vintage pickup with an aggressive tone »
Publié le 07/26/11 à 10:52
For about 10 years before the PAF came out the P-90 was Gibson main pickup. They are single coils with a larger chassis than most single coils. Even though humbuckers were still around Gibson was putting these in their lower end guitars up until the mid 70s. If you went to buy a low end Gibson back in the 60s you would probably end up with something with P-90 pickups. These pickups typically have an output of 7k but the way they deliver this output is what makes them great. They have a mix of single coil twang with the smoothness of a PAF. Its like a crispy humbucker. The PAF has a more refined and sofisticated sound since it came out 10 years later but the raw sound of the P-90 is something special. Not many vintage hardware pieces have been able to stay useful for so many decades. In the early days these were used for jazz and from the 60s onwards people used them to get great hard rock and early metal tones. Tony Iommi used P-90s for decades and all the classic WHO tunes were done with a P-90 SG special. In that era you do not get much heavier than that. They have a really aggressive tone and delivery more so than that of a PAF. Many of the heaviest records of the time were done on P-90 guitars. An SG with a set of P-90s and a bit of gain is classic rock heaven. The grit and tone from these pickups are something you would not expect from a vintage piece of hardware. Because of their unique size many people do not retrofit these into their guitars. Most guitars that have P-90s came with them. So there is not much of an aftermarket for them unless they are replacing worn out examples in vintage guitars.