SOLD 1998 Gibson Custom Shop "Lee Sklar Signature" Model Bass - rare bass with nice original case

Discussion in 'For Sale: Bass Guitars' started by Mark Gollihur, Aug 10, 2022.

  1. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    New Jersey
    United States
    Important note: This is a private sale of personally-owned electric bass equipment, and is not associated with my music store in any way (which specializes in upright bass gear).

    This is my own personally owned gear, inherited from the estate of my dad, Bob, who owned it for many years. While I'm definitely keeping some of his most treasured instruments, this is one of the ones that needs to go to a new home where it will be used/played/enjoyed.

    This is a unique Leland Sklar signature model bass that was only made for one year (developed in 1997, sold in 1998), and it's in REALLY great condition. IMHO, one unfortunate finish chip at the base of the neck heel keeps this "closet classic" from being considered "minty fresh."

    It clearly has very few playing hours under its belt, and is all original with the original deluxe case (even the combo lock hasn't been set, and instructions are in the case!) It was maintained by my dad (a big fan of Lee Sklar, whom he met a few times) with great care and reverence.

    Why is this bass so rare? Why aren't there many photos of Lee playing or endorsing this instrument? One story I've seen is that Lee worked with them for a while to make the bass, and although he was ultimately happy with the results, he was disappointed that it took so long to make it happen and signed with Sheldon Dingwall in the meantime, effectively ending their collaboration. The other story I've seen is that Lee was disappointed in the level of "push" that Gibson put behind the instrument and bailed for that reason. Either, both, or neither of those accounts may be true. Whatever the reason, the partnership didn't last long and didn't produce many basses, but this one sure is nice. And, pretty rare, I suppose - especially in this condition.

    The bass has several unique features that were specifically requested by Lee during its design and execution:

    • Small, lightweight body with slim "Jazz Bass" spec neck
    • Very small "mandolin" sized frets
    • Lee's signature dual EMG Reverse P pickup configuration in Jazz Bass positions
    • 18v active electronics (2 9v batteries)
    • Hipshot D-Tuner key on the E string
    • Brass nut
    • Really nice looking non-shiny satin-finish hardware (bridge, tuners, knobs)
    • Special unique headstock design with printed "Leland Sklar" signature

    The only imperfection I can easily find is one finish chip at the base of the neck, under the strings. It's a clean chip, and the piece that chipped out is gone (it's been like this for many years). See photo below for closeup. Other than that, I find no scratches, gouges, buckle rash, finish issues, checking, dents, or other imperfections to speak of. It's really clean.

    It's also SUPER light - weighing just under 7 pounds, 15 ounces! It has a thick rosewood board on a maple neck, and a light weight alder body. 34" scale, 21-fret rosewood fingerboard has pearl dot inlays. TriBurst (TBI) finish.

    The bass plays perfectly; the action is super low, and the bass has a really punchy tone - but the 18v electronics elevate the EMGs to a more open sound - not that "choked" or "compressed" sound often attributed to the EMGs of that era. It's currently fitted with D'Addario EXL160BT "Balanced" nickel strings, and fretwear is almost non-existent. Controls are Volume, Volume and Tone.

    INCLUDES Original Deluxe Gibson Case. The case is super high-end, with a custom fitted instrument compartment, drape cloth, leather handle, and combination lock on the center latch (it still has the plastic strip from the factory, it's never been set nor used!)

    Price includes shipping to the continental USA. I pack and ship instruments, amps, and other gear daily, and this will be very well-packed and shipped with insurance to cover loss or damage. I can also work with local folks who wish to come pick up the bass in person, I'm in Southern NJ, about 20 minutes from Philadelphia, PA.

    For Sale Only. Don't be afraid to ask, but am really not interested in trades - we're trying to "thin the herd," here.

    Important note on pricing: Since it IS a very rare instrument, it's very hard to pinpoint what the price should be. I based the asking price on other sales I've seen, considering condition, rarity, and some other factors. If you legitimately think I'm way out of the ballpark, hit me up with a reasonable offer (pursuant to the rules of TalkBass, please don't debate the price in the comments). Ultimately, I want to put this bass into the hands of someone who can and will appreciate it.

    I can accept payment by PayPal, check, Venmo. Credit cards can be run through PayPal. Cash, and discount (for non-shipping) for in-person sales when you come to me (Southern NJ, near Philadelphia).

    Image8.jpg Image1.jpg Image4.jpg Image6.jpg Image9.jpg docs.jpg leland.jpg
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2022
  2. TimBosby

    TimBosby Gold Supporting Member

    Dec 19, 2004
    Omaha, NE, USA
    Holy rare!!
    G RICH 5 likes this.
  3. yodedude2

    yodedude2 Supporting Member

    Nov 19, 2005
    san antonio, texas
    dayumm! thanks for listing this here, mark.
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2022
  4. Maybe I missed it but what year (s) were these made? I have never seen this model.
  5. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    1998 - it's in the title, but I don't think I put it anywhere else in the description.
    Alan Scharrer likes this.
  6. burgerdj


    Dec 4, 2006
    That’s just too cool! Interesting to have an 18v setup with just a tone control. Guessing this thing has gain for days.
    Alan Scharrer and Mark Gollihur like this.
  7. SlowpokeJoe

    SlowpokeJoe Supporting Member

    Kind of funny that Leland's idea of a custom Gibson is basically a Franken-Fender :D

    Very cool bass!
    Alan Scharrer likes this.
  8. CryingBass

    CryingBass Just a Fool Whose Intentions are Good Gold Supporting Member

    Apr 8, 2016
    Easy for me to say, but stick to that price Mark. GLWTS
  9. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    Yeah, I'm trying to price "to sell" as I don't feel like playing back and forth games. Hopefully, someone who's been looking for one of these will jump at it. :bassist:
    CryingBass and yodedude2 like this.
  10. mikewalker

    mikewalker Supporting Member

    Jul 30, 2017
    Canada, Eh!
    Double-Reverse-P!!! :thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup::thumbsup:
  11. Hambone70


    Jan 31, 2018
    Interesting! Any chance of a sound clip or two?
    Alan Scharrer likes this.
  12. Can’t find any in You Tube
  13. Mark Gollihur

    Mark Gollihur Supporting Member Commercial User

    Jul 19, 2000
    Mullica Hill, NJ
    Owner/President, Gollihur Music LLC
    Maybe I can find some time to make a couple...
    Hambone70 likes this.
  14. Bassinthemudd

    Bassinthemudd Supporting Member

    Jan 3, 2020
    Not just any franken-fender, but a pretty close replica of the most recorded bass in history (Lee Sklar's franken-fender.)
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2022
    TimBosby and SlowpokeJoe like this.
  15. elkkid2

    elkkid2 Supporting Member

    Jan 2, 2012
    Rio Vista, Ca
    I hope I sell something soon!!!