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Les Paul was an American jazz and country guitarist, songwriter and inventor. He was the inventor of the solid-body electric guitar which made the sound of rock and roll possible. He is credited with many recording innovations. Although he was not the first to use the technique, his early experiments with overdubbing (also known as sound on sound), delay effects such as tape delay, phasing effects and multi-track recording were among the first to attract widespread attention. 

Paul's innovative guitar, "The Log", built after-hours in the Epiphone guitar factory in 1940, a 4" × 4" chunk of pine with strings and a pickup, was one of the first solid-body electric guitars. Paul Tutmarc of Audiovox Manufacturing Co. built a solid body electric bass in 1935 and Adolph Rickenbacker had marketed a solid-body guitar in the 1930s and Paul A. Bigsby had built one for Merle Travis in 1948 and Leo Fender also independently created his own (the Fender "Broadcaster" later changed to "Esquire" for copyright reasons, a single pickup model) in 1948. Although Paul approached the Gibson Guitar Corporation with his idea of a solid body electric guitar, they showed no interest until Fender began marketing its Esquire which later had a second pick-up added and became known as the Telecaster.

The arrangement persisted until 1961, when declining sales prompted Gibson to change the design without Paul's knowledge, creating a much thinner, lighter and more aggressive-looking instrument with two cutaway "horns" instead of one. Paul said he first saw the "new" Gibson Les Paul in a music-store window, and disliked it. Although his contract required him to pose with the guitar, he said it was not "his" instrument and asked Gibson to remove his name from the headstock. Others claimed that Paul ended his endorsement contract with Gibson during his divorce to avoid having his wife get his endorsement money. Gibson renamed the guitar "Gibson SG", which stands for "Solid Guitar", and it also became one of the company's best sellers.

The Gibson Les Paul - One of the world's most popular electric guitars, was named after the man who invented it.


LES PAUL'S LUTHIER/GUITAR TECH/ENGINEER FOR 45 YEARS - While Les Paul was certainly more than a genius in his quest for his ultimate sound,  tone, and understanding of music and the instruments that it took to get there, for over four decades he relied constantly on Tom Doyle to make his guitars whole again after he chopped them to pieces in has mad pursuit of that sound in his head. Most people automatically assume that because there is a famous guitar with his name on it, that Les was a guitar builder, tech, bench man, etc., and knew how to build, repair and refurbish guitars. That just simply was not the case... he relied on Tom for that. Tom and Les worked on countless projects over the 40+ years together and Tom is nothing less than a walking/talking encyclopedia about all things Les Paul, Gibson, build specs, musical history, and knows more about guitars of all kinds than anyone you will ever encounter alive today.

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Keep an eye out for articles about Tom Doyle in:
Doyle Coils TRU-CLONES PAF Humbuckers

Les Paul was working very diligently in the last years of his life in an attempt to clean up the Humbucker pickup. He felt that the bottom end of the frequency response was muddy and unclear, and he fervently wanted to fix that. Les had an incredible passion for making things “just right”... and would tinker, test, and experiment on things he wanted to fix, tirelessly - almost to the point of obsession. His constant passion towards the end of his life was for getting the high-impedance Humbucker to come alive, and deliver that clarity that he so desired. As an homage to his longtime friend and mentor, Tom Doyle has brought Les Paul's Dream of a clear, articulate, harmonically lively Humbucker pickup to life...

Doyle Coils

Tom Plays & Speaks on
The "Thank You Les" DVD

Featuring such Greats as Keith Richards, Steve Miller, Billy Gibbons, Slash, José Feliciano and many more!