Thursday, August 13, 2009

Les Paul, RIP

We take the electric guitar for granted but somebody had to invent it. That man was Les Paul. Though it might seem obvious to us today, it took ingenuity and creativity to do it right. Les Paul came up with a brilliant innovation:

As ensemble sound levels were growing with amplification, his goal was to improve tone and sustain, while minimizing feedback, so he designed an instrument with a solid body, reducing vibration in the frame and concentrating it in the string.

I own a Les Paul. After more than half a century, the guitar is still the standard of excellence. Jimmy Page got an astonishing range of sounds out of the guitar. For a pure, beautiful Les Paul tone, I would recommend listening to Duane Allman's lyrical lead solos.

Les Paul was a giant. His life is over, but his achievement is eternal.


Anonymous said...

Don't forget about his other achievements; multitrack recording, overdubbing, delay.

What a man.

Mike said...

The only guitar I own now is a Les Paul. (Thieves got my Ovation Balladeer. Six of one, half-dozen of the other.)