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Al Di Meola is Planning on Selling His ’71 Les Paul Custom for Charity

Al Di Meola performs live in 2019
(Image credit: Scott Dudelson/Getty Images)

In a new interview with Guitar World (opens in new tab), Al Di Meola revealed that he is planning on selling his legendary '71 black Les Paul Custom guitar for charity.

When asked if he put the guitar, along with other treasures in his collection, on display during his A Fine Taste and Music (opens in new tab) house events – where fans were able to visit Di Meola at his New Jersey home for a night of food, wine, conversation, one-on-one performances, and more – Di Meola answered in the affirmative.

"Oh, yeah. The ’71, which weighs about 400 pounds," Di Meola joked (opens in new tab). "That’s the one I started using with Chick Corea. Which I’m selling, by the way, for the right price.

Pressed to confirm the potential sale, Di Meola said "Yeah. I have a little charity on the side, and I’m going to let go of a lot of my electrics because I’m playing less electric these days and I’m trying to lighten up the collection a bit. So if we can get the right price…"

In other Di Meola news, in the same interview, the fleet-fingered guitar legend also said that he would be releasing a new guitar trio record with John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucía in September. 

When asked if it would be a 40th anniversary reissue of the trio's legendary live album, Friday Night in San Francisco, Di Meola said (opens in new tab) "No, not really. It’s going to be a show from the same venue… but the next night. Saturday Night in San Francisco.

"For 40 years, I’ve had the other night that no-one knew about except for the people that went to the show. In fact, even John didn’t remember we played a second night. [laughs]

"But I have the tapes, and I had them professionally baked to have them restored. And it turns out they’re phenomenal. And we played all different tunes. On the first record I had a song called 'Mediterranean Sundance.' This night there’s a song called 'Splendido Sundance.' And there’s three unaccompanied solo pieces. So you’re not getting the same record twice."

"So it's a pretty incredible thing. I'm looking forward to people hearing it. And then hopefully at some point we’ll get to bring the dinners back as well. So this year is shaping up to be pretty busy."

Jackson Maxwell
Jackson Maxwell

Jackson is an Associate Editor at GuitarWorld.com and GuitarPlayer.com. He’s been writing and editing stories about new gear, technique and guitar-driven music both old and new since 2014, and has also written extensively on the same topics for Guitar Player. Elsewhere, his album reviews and essays have appeared in Louder and Unrecorded. Though open to music of all kinds, his greatest love has always been indie, and everything that falls under its massive umbrella. To that end, you can find him on Twitter crowing about whatever great new guitar band you need to drop everything to hear right now.