Guitar hero Les Paul dies aged 94

The guitarist and inventor, whose pioneering work made the sound of rock'n'roll possible, has died aged 94

Les Paul, the jazz guitarist and inventor who created one of the world's most famous electric guitars, has died. He was 94.

The Gibson Les Paul was played by the likes of Paul McCartney, Slash and U2's the Edge and is still a firm favourite with younger bands such as Gallows. Les Paul helped create the famous model in the 1952, along with designer Ted McCarty.

Born in Wisconsin in 1915, Paul turned an early obsession with music into a successful career as a jazz guitarist, playing with the likes of Nat King Cole and Bing Crosby.

In 1939, Paul built one of the first solid-body electric guitars, known as "The Log", which prompted Gibson to approach him. Paul's legacy stretches much further than his signature guitar, however. As an inventor, Paul pioneered many studio techniques including multitrack recording, which allowed musicians to record parts separately before mixing them together into a finished track.

Gibson president Dave Berryman said: "As the father of the electric guitar, he was not only one of the world's greatest innovators but a legend who created, inspired and contributed to the success of musicians around the world."

Paul reportedly died of complications from pneumonia at White Plains Hospital.

Obituary: Les Paul


Tim Jonze

The GuardianTramp

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