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Why collect Vintage Guitars? And why Vintage Gibson Basses in particular?

Vintage Guitars offer a rare opportunity to combine investing with genuine pleasure. A vintage instrument is the product of craftmanship, something of beauty that can be enjoyed and displayed, but can also be played at any time. Owning a vintage instrument is more than investing in a sound appreciating asset.

Vintage guitars were often better made, with superior materials, finer craftsmanship and better construction than their modern equivalents, giving vintage guitars character and sound that's not available in anything fresh off the assembly line.

The appeal of a Gibson, in particular, can be traced to the early 60's when Michael Bloomfield came to England playing a Gibson Les Paul. The guitar greats who heard him (Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, among others) fell in love with the sound, and started to favour the Les Paul. This increased the demand for guitars that were produced in limited numbers, driving up the cost.

For collectors, there are two further factors that influence the vintage guitar market. One is that the "Baby Boomer" generation can now afford to buy the guitars they watched their idols using in the past. The other is the historical significance of the impact their music had on the 20th century. Like anything of historical significance, vintage guitars are desirable because of the human desire to own a piece of history.

Hand made craftsmanship, rare materials, and design expertise combined with limited production, results in a market for these instruments that can only continue to grow in value.

So, why vintage Gibson Basses?

Well, as one of the Baby Boomers, I had owned and played a copy Gibson EB3 bass as a teenager and have always loved its style.

Now, given a choice of buying a Harley Davison motorbike (and killing myself!) or a real Gibson bass I chose a Gibson bass, and intended to buy a handfull for personal pleasure-and for investment. That handfull grew into a substantial collection - some of which is celebrated on this website, and others on its sister site ""!

The Vintage Guitar Investment Market

By definition, there is a finite supply of vintage guitars. As the supply cannot increase, and demand is not likely to decrease, then like fine wine, or classic art, the value can only go up. So, even if you collect solely for the pleasure of owning a beautiful instrument with character and history, you can confidently expect your instrument to hold, and even increase, in value over the years.

The vintage guitar market has outperformed traditional markets ever since it has been tracked by an index created by Vintage Guitar magazine in 1991. "The ‘42 Index’ has demonstrated an average annual return of over 31% since it began 17 years ago," said Tommy Byrne, co-founder of ACP and Chief Investment Officer of the Fund. "Historically, when the major markets have collapsed, this market has plateaued until the traditional markets picked up again."



The Market for Investors

"the vintage guitar market, has demonstrated an average annual return of over 31% since it began 17 years ago,"

Tommy Byrne, co-founder of ACP and Chief Investment Officer of the ‘42 Index’ Fund

Jack Bruce's EB3

See more Gibson Basses, available for sale, at