The Rosso Corsa is the latest (at the time of writing) signature guitar for the well-known British guitarist, Saul Hudson – otherwise known as Slash. Slash is a very well known player of Les Paul guitars, and some say that he is almost single-handedly responsible for the resurgence in popularity of Gibson guitars. Ironically, the guitar that he used on many recordings, including Appetite for Destruction, is actually a Memphis Les Paul copy.
I’d been looking at Les Pauls for over a year, but when I tried some Gibson Les Pauls I never got along with them, particularly the necks. Still, I couldn’t quite get rid of the itch. During 2014 I also started to get more into Slash as a player, particularly in his recent work with Myles Kennedy. When the Epiphone Rosso Corsa came out, it seemed to tie together a number of mental strands. What’s more, it was a limited edition that was highly sought after, and so I thought that its resale value would be higher than average.
In fact, when they all sold out very quickly, Epiphone seemed to recant the limited numbers and made a load more of them, so the scarcity value was hit. Since then, though, the Rosso Corsas have disappeared from most shops, and the prices on ebay are quite high. However, I don’t intend to sell my Rosso Corsa!
I hesitated for a while before buying the Rosso Corsa. I’d had a bit of a mad year – I had already bought four guitars and I had a new Chapman bass on order too, which arrived the day after the Rosso Corsa. In the meantime, many shops ran out of stock, but I tracked down one of the few remaining examples to a shop in Mons, in the south of Belgium. Not only did they have one left, but the price was also quite reasonable, €799.
So I drove down to Mons to try the guitar out. Somehow, even though I hadn’t taken to any of the Gibson Les Pauls I tried, I was quite happy with the Rosso Corsa. It is also a handsome guitar with a very attractive red flame maple top. In fact, it is fairly similar to my Chapman ML-2 although the Rosso Corsa is a lighter red.
The Rosso Corsa was one of the most expensive Epiphone guitars, partly because it has the genuine Seymour Duncan Slash Alnico II humbuckers, the same ones as in the Gibson Slash signature models. It also has Slash artwork on the headstock and comes with a super hard case and a certificate of authenticity (i.e. a piece of paper to make you think you’ve bought something special, but never mind).
I have enjoyed playing my Rosso Corsa a lot, and I think it got me used to Les Paul necks, paving the way for me to buy my Gibson Les Paul Classic 13 months later. It sounds great, and even managed to quell my Les Paul gas for a while!
See the Epiphone website