The Gibson Gospel guitar originated in 1972-73 and was manufactured at Gibson’s
factory. These were the days of a spiritual awakening throughout North America. Perhaps that was the impetus behind the creation of the guitar and this guitar was designed to be a deep sounding vocal backup instrument. I've played
my friend Terry Fisher's Gibson Gospel and
I concur. It does have an excellent, big sound. Kalamazoo
The guitar had a unique laminated arched back with no bracing. This type of back has been a feature on several other guitars. Guild used the arched back on at least one model and Framus of Bavaria used it on most of their acoustic instruments. The arched back provided its own support, so there was no need for bracing.
The consumer focus of the guitar was for accompanying Christian music. As I previously mentioned, this era was known as the Jesus Revolution. A Gibson advertisement bears this out by showing a typical Christian coffeehouse singer of the era testifying about why the instrument was his choice.
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Whatever the target audience was, the Gibson Gospel acoustic guitar was also an excellent instrument choice for bluegrass, folk, country music and even blues.
In 1992 Gibson again offered the Gospel acoustic model. The reissue defers compared to the original. Gibson chose mahogany over maple for the reissue. The new version of the Gospel guitar has multiple white binding, solid mahogany sides and back. The unbound maple neck was topped with a rosewood fingerboard with pearl dot inlays. The braces were scalloped like those on the more expensive models.
The Dove logo remained on this instruments head stock.
This time it also was adorned with black pick guard that was not as large or fancy as the original. Finishes were offered in either natural or sunburst.