Saturday, June 9, 2012

Les' birthday, RIP Les Paul - June 9, 1915 - August 13, 2009

Les Paul by John Peden_1983 by Doctor Noe
Les Paul by John Peden_1983, a photo by Doctor Noe on Flickr.
By Noë Gold
Photo by the great John Peden

The Wizard of Waukesha was the cover subject in Guitar World March, 1983, in which we published Part I of the Les Paul odyssey to Mahwah known as Jersey Guitar Safari and which will be chronicled in a forthcoming tome. Les did say at the time that this visit by a half-dozen GW pilgrims was what got him off his ass to begin playing again, first at a place called Fat Tuesdays and later at Iridium, where he played every Monday night till the day he died, practically.

Noe the G and the Guitar World crew, composed of John Peden, photographer; Perry Margouleff, guitar maven; Bob Davis, "Les' adopted son"; Peter Mengaziol, the techno-wiz who did the full-on two-part interview, went on a guitar safari to Les Paul's house in Mahwah, NJ, where we got the royal tour of all his wondrous gadgets as we prepared an article about the "Wizard of Waukesha."

Go to for information.

Here is what the GW blog says currently:

You're not much of a guitar magazine if you don't acknowledge guitar inventor, recording innovator and master musician Les Paul. Guitar World writer Peter Mangaziol was fortunate enough to interview Paul at his home in New Jersey, which was described as a guitar tinkerer's playground.
By 1983 Guitar World was on its way. Readership was growing, feedback was voluminous (and mostly positive), and some of the world's biggest musicians were gracing the covers.
This year saw interviews with Pete Townshend, Jaco Pastorius and even the legendary Les Paul. Sadly, it also saw the death of Muddy Waters, one of the most important and influential guitarists of the 20th century. As the chronicles of Guitar World continued to grow, it would become evident that every new and exciting discovery would in turn be undercut by unavoidable loss.

1 comment:

Doctor Noe said...

Guitar World Interview:
Leslie West Discusses the Gibson Les Paul Jr., His Health, Influences and Upcoming Iridium Shows
Posted 06/07/2012 at 1:04pm | by John Grimley

How well did you know Les Paul?

I met Les Paul once. I think at the time I was guesting with Bachman Turner Overdrive on their 51-50 tour. He came to the Meadowlands and I had his signed Les Paul Jr. at the time. I was really nervous. I don't think he knew what he was creating when he built that guitar. I'm sure he had no idea.