Ace’s original “Budokan” Les Paul made its stage debut in 1977 during KISS’s Rock and Roll Over world tour, which helped establish KISS as the #1 live act on the planet. Ace made the “Budokan” Les Paul his main axe at the very time KISS’s fame was exploding around the world thanks to prime-time television appearances, a sold-out debut at Madison Square Garden and the release of their classic album, Love Gun, which included Ace’s signature hit, “Shock Me,” which ranked #50 in Guitar World’s 100 Greatest Guitar Solos.
But 1977 is most remembered as the year KISS sold out four nights at the Budokan arena in Tokyo, Japan, breaking the record previously held by The Beatles since 1966. Ace returned to Japan with his “Budokan” Les Paul the following year for the Alive II tour where KISS broke the record again with a sold out five-night stand.
Recreating a Historic Classic
KISS’s Budokan appearances helped make Ace’s “Budokan” Les Paul Custom his trademark guitar. Now, Epiphone’s signature luthiers who helped create collectable artist models for Slash, Tak Matsumoto and Joe Bonamassa, present perhaps the most talked about signature model yet, the Epiphone Limited Edition Ace Frehley “Budokan” Les Paul Custom Outfit.
Epiphone worked closely with Ace and his original “Budokan” Les Paul to create a faithful reproduction of his favorite Les Paul, including a period correct 3-piece hard maple top, 3-piece mahogany neck with volute, Grover® tuners with pearloid buttons, and the famous “Eagle” sticker. Unlike Ace’s original, however, all three humbuckers on Epiphone’s Ltd. Edition “Budokan” Les Paul are wired and ready to go. We’ll leave the explosive power all to you!