Performing pair coming to the Bell

Wednesday, May 5, 2010 5:21 PM
Last updated 5:22 PM
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Over his  more-than-60-year career,  B.B. King, who performs Saturday  at Bell Auditorium , has played with a lot of musical partners, each  named Lucille.

The first  Lucille was a $30 Gibson  guitar  purportedly rescued from a club fire and named for a woman whom he had been fighting over. Legend has it he kept the name to remind him not to indulge in ill-advised behavior - such as running into burning buildings or fighting over women. Over the years there have been many Lucilles, some the signature Gibson he helped design in the early '80s, others stock guitars and even (gasp) an occasional Fender.

Lucille and her King are inseparable. It's impossible to imagine the musician without a gleaming black Gibson cradled in his arms.

That  lasting love affair  is not uncommon in the annals of music. Many musicians  form significant bonds with favorite instruments. We've compiled a list of  guitarists and the iconic instruments that have become associated with them. Here are two to get you started. See Thursday's Applause for more.

Jimi Hendrix: Although he played a Gibson at Wood­stock, Hendrix will for­ever be associated with Fender Stratocasters, strung upside-down to accommodate his lefty ways. It was a Strat he  set alight at the end of his Monterey Pop performance, purportedly because he believed you must destroy that which you love.
Jimmy Page: T here have been a lot of instruments in the Zep vet's arsenal, but none of them are  as iconic as the custom Gibson double-neck he  frequently played in concert . Built as both a six- and 12-string guitar, the uncommon instrument was capable of both the ethereal lilt and powerful crunch that are  part of the Zeppelin  sound.

Angus Young: The AC/DC guitarist's  original guitar was a 1968 Gibson SG with a working man's natural brown finish. Each guitar since has been more of the same. Like Young's bar chord blues, there's nothing  fancy about the instruments, but like the musician that wields them, they have proved more than capable of getting the job done.


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