Monday, August 17, 2009

R.I.P. Les Paul

les paul just recently passed away.

not only was he a great guitarist, but he invented the first solid-body electric guitar, which became the les paul gibson model. in fact, i had thought that les paul was just the name of the guitar, before i found out who he was. haha. and i play a gibson.

he was also known for other innovations; he created some guitar effects like delay, he was one of the first (i believe) to use overdubbing in recording, im pretty sure he created the first loop pedal (which i rely on heavily for writing music!), and he contributed to the inventions of some of the first multi-track recorders.

one day, i was listening to panda bear and he used some sound he had recorded-possibly railroad tracks or something-as the beat of the song. my dad informed me that les paul one of the first to use some kind of noise like that in popular music. and that was a long time ago!!

he recorded many hit songs with his cute wife, mary ford (who also played guitar), in which he would overdub himself playing all the guitar parts and overdub her voice to sing in harmony with herself. i was instantly attracted to her two-part harmonies the first time i heard my dad play that record, as i do a lot of that kind of stuff in my music.
he has a pretty distinct sound where some of his songs sound like the records playing too fast--almost cartoon-y. he liked to record some parts half as slow, so when played back, they would sound this way.
he died in his 90s and only quit playing live shows a couple years before that.

take a listen to one of their hits, posted here, if you have time!
it's a good one.


i also watched the breakfast club today, in honor of john hughes' recent death.
although i have to say, it's not my favorite of his movies.

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