The name Les Paul is synonymous with the electric guitar. As a player, inventor and recording artist, Paul was an innovator his entire life. He built his first crystal radio and began to play the guitar at age nine. At 13, he was performing semi-professionally as a country-music guitarist and working on sound-related inventions. In 1941, Paul built his first solid-body electric guitar and continued to improve his prototype for decades. The Gibson Les Paul grew out of Paul’s experiments. His solid body, non-vibrating guitar, which he called “The Log,” allowed the sound of a plucked string to sustain; its vibrating energy did not dissipate in a hollow body.
Gibson initially turned Paul away, calling his invention “a broomstick with pickups.” As a result, Leo Fender beat Paul to the marketplace. In 1952, the gold-top solid body electric guitar bearing Paul’s name was finally released. Paul continuously added advancements, such as low-impedance pickup technology. The list of musicians associated with the Gibson Les Paul is extensive and includes those who play rock, blues, country and jazz.Paul also refined the technology of sound recording, developing revolutionary engineering techniques such as close miking, echo delay, overdubbing and multitracking. More About Les