Orville Les Paul Melody Maker MM-65 Cardinal Red 1996
Orville Melody Maker, cardinal red, made in Japan mid 1990s. Orville was the first name of the esteemed Mr Gibson, and the Orville brand was Gibson's foray into licensed Japanese manufacturing, launching in the late 80s and wrapping up around 1998. The high end Orville LP Standards and whatnot fetch serious cash these days, and rightly so: they're a brilliantly made guitar and owned by Gibson. This was a short lived but very cool take on the Melody Maker Les Paul, it popped up very briefly on the Japan domestic market and then was gone almost as fast. You get a slim, light mahogany body with a tasty vintage voiced humbucker, paired with the ever-reliable tune-o-matic bridge and stop tail. The neck is slim and quick and will feel familiar to fans of 60s style Fender necks; it's got a nice rounded little profile. As soon as I plugged this in, it seemed to just want to play punk songs: it's got a growly, warm midrange and a fast, rounded bass and absolutely loves a good chugg on some power chords. Winding back the tone knob a little and softening the touch gets you pretty close to a tasty 'neck pickup' tone too; it's not all skateboards and trucker caps. The red finish, slim headstock and brown guard (wot) make for a cool little combo; it certainly looks stage ready. Previous to nabbing this, I hadn't come across this model before, so hey, they don't come around much. Thanks Orv!
Model: Orville Melody Maker MM-65
Made: Japan, 1996 approx (no serial on this model)
Finish: cardinal red
Neck: mahogany, rosewood board, 24.75" scale, 12" radius
Pickups: Gibson P-90, alnico magnet
Case: Epiphone padded bag
Cosmetic condition notes: minor finish wear. Headstock has some minor marks on the end and some scuffs on the back. The neck is clean and smooth in the hands, minor dimples on the back only. The back has some widespread light scuffs and dimples, no major marks though. The sides have minor dimples around the whole body but no major marks. The front has a minor chip on the edge near the volume knob, as well as as few dimples and scuffs around the body and some play wear on the guard and top horn. Overall: good condition (7/10).
Playing condition notes: Neck is straight, action is low, intonation is good, truss rod works. All electrics tested and working properly. Frets have some normal wear but they're pretty even with plenty of height left; 7/10 for fret life left. Wearing fresh 10/52 Moonshiners strings.