Thursday, August 13, 2009

Another One Bites the Dust

Les Paul died today, of "complications of pneumonia." He died at White Plains Hospital surrounded by his friends and family. He had been ill since 2006, although he still made it to his regular nightclub gigs. He was 94. A gentle, thoughtful, friendly man who had a knack for invention and tinkering, Les Paul will be missed by music lovers everywhere.

I met and spoke with Les Paul at a NAMM show in the early 1980s. He was playing at the Gibson booth with his friends, Tommy Tedesco, Howard Roberts, and Herb Ellis. Howard died in 1992. Tommy died in 1997. Herb is 88, but he's still at it. Those three guitarists were the motivation, education, and inspiration for my own guitar playing, such as it is. Roberts and Tedesco jumped the stage and vanished without even acknowleging the audience. Ellis moved off with some friends and guitar dealers, doing his bit to promote Gibson's Epiphone division. Les stayed at his stool and talked with anyone who wanted to say "hello." He was a very friendly, gentle man and he made an impression with me that will stick for life. That experience and others made the NAMM show my all time favorite trade show.

Wirebender Audio Rants

Over the dozen years I taught audio engineering at Musictech College and McNally Smith College of Music, I accumulated a lot of material that might be useful to all sorts of budding audio techs and musicians. This site will include comments and questions about professional audio standards, practices, and equipment. I will add occasional product reviews with as many objective and irrational opinions as possible.