The genius behind the Gibson Les Paul Guitars was more than the name Les Paul. These are 10 rocking facts about Lester Polsfuss:
1. He started early
At age nine, Paul built his first crystal radio. He started his creations at a very early age. At age thirteen, he was already a semi-professional guitarist and played country music while experimenting with sound innovations.
2. A risk-taker
In 1940, Paul almost electrocuted himself during a session in the cellar of his apartment at Queens. He experimented.
3. 1948 accident
Paul’s life threatening car accident in Oklahoma also threatened his music career when it cost him a shattered arm and elbow as well as a broken back, ribs, collarbone, and nose. His desperation made him ask the surgeons to set his arm in an angle wherein he could still play the guitar. Good thing, after a year and a half of recovery, he was able to play again.
4. The Duo
In the 1950s, Paul and his wife Mary Ford performed together as a duo. Mary sang while Paul played the guitar. In 1951, the duo sold six million records together.
5. The Godfather
The American guitarist and singer songwriter Steve Miller had Les Paul as his godfather. 6. Jimi and Paul
American rock guitarist, singer, and songwriter Jimi Hendrix was Les Paul’s contemporary. In 1970, when building his famed Electric Lady Studios, Jimi Hendrix consulted Paul.
7. The Tribute
In 2008, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame paid tribute to Paul with a week-long celebration of his life and his contributions to the music industry. Paul performed in the event too.
8. Topnotch Credentials
Paul has a long list of achievements and awards. This includes being a member of the Grammy Hall of Fame, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the National Inventors Hall of Fame and the National Broadcasters Hall of Fame.
9. Rock n’ Roll changed forever
1952 was a game-changer, especially for Paul. It was the year he released the first eight-track tape recorder and the Les Paul gold-top solid body electric guitar that changed Rock n’ Roll forever.
10. The Legacy
The Les Paul Foundation continues to inspire innovative thinking by sharing Les Paul’s legacy through supporting music education, innovation, and many others. It is a foundation that awards grants for music engineering for the youth as well as grants for medical research related to hearing impairment. This foundation also supports public exhibits displaying Les Paul’s life achievements.
For more info, click: https://www.lespaulfoundation.org/
Sources: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gibson_Les_Paul http://www.gibson.com/News-Lifestyle/Features/en-us/15-Facts-About-Les-Paul.aspx http://www.guitarplayer.com/gear/1012/top-five-gibson-les-paul-facts-you-probably-didnt-know /54270