There is no name better known to guitarists, songwriters, guitar collectors and music fans than the name Les Paul. A recently launched website that is dedicated to the inventor, musician and music technology pioneer who became the “Father of Modern Music”. He celebrates his remarkable life through hundreds of rare videos, photo galleries, behind-the-scenes experiences and more.
Les Paul’s career as a popular guitarist and performer, with one of the most popular electric guitar models bearing his name, would in itself make his name known to the world, but his impact on modern musical culture is indeed. Deeper. Beyond his personal musical accomplishments (which were remarkable), he is also personally responsible for many inventions and innovations that have changed music at his heart. These landmark innovations have changed the way musicians create and perform music; how engineers record it; and the way music fans hear it. Les Paul led the way as a music pioneer and the result arguably made him the most important individual in modern music history. If you don’t know this man, you should. And if you are a musician, your music education is not complete without a thorough understanding of its many contributions.
A quick tour of the new website begins at the new homepage with a slideshow of highlights from Les Paul’s extraordinary life edited to his own music. From there, visitors can choose to explore five full sections: Inventor, Musician, Foundation, Education, and Music.
The Inventor section is devoted to Les Paul’s innovations in solid-body electric guitar, sound on sound recording and multitrack, home studios and other recording innovations. Vintage videos feature the inventor explaining his inventions from his home studio or on national TV shows. This section provides rare glimpses of his early inventions and a look at the original Les Paul guitar schematics in the background of the web pages.
The Musician section celebrates Les Paul’s impact on countless artists and icons of modern music, from Sir Paul McCartney to Slash. This speaks of his own virtuoso playing which spans many genres including jazz, country, R&B and rock. His early relationships with icons such as Bing Crosby, Chet Akins and Tony Bennett can be seen in photos and videos of extraordinary performances. This section also includes a chronicle of his life with his musical partner, Mary Ford, and their hit recordings. Details of Les Paul’s personal guitar collection are included here, including detailed descriptions of each guitar and video content from his many famous friends including Keith Richards, Billy Gibbons, Joan Jett, Jeff Beck, Steve Miller, Merle Haggard and Stanley Jordan.
Looking to the future, the site features the Les Paul Foundation which seeks to inspire innovative and creative thinking through grants for music education, recording, innovation and medical research related to hearing. An Education section offers various resources for classroom or individual use and is divided into elementary, secondary, and college sections, including lesson plans, study units, downloadable workbooks, and other educational resources for the class.
The website wouldn’t be complete without a Music section, an organized look at Les Paul’s music and its musical heritage. Here, visitors can download or stream Les Paul’s music, including 33 Top 20 recordings spanning multiple genres, from country and pop to jazz and R&B. An online Les Paul store offers a whole new line of iconic new products, including new t-shirts, baseball caps, hoodies, sweatshirts and the popular Les Paul in his own words delivered.
To experience Les Paul like never before, Click here.
Photos courtesy of the Les Paul Foundation