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Today is the birthday of Leo Fender

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I remember their music on the radio, she had a unique voice that could handle the machine-gun lyrics and tight harmonies, but you could understand every word she sang. They double/triple quadruple tracked everything live, and one mistake meant do it over. She and Les were married, but broke up over his refusal to stop touring, but they remained friends until her death in the mid 70's. Les still plays at a club in the Village every Saturday nite, the name escapes me. He's in his 90's, but still has that unique sound. "Aloysius Horatio Thomas the Cat (He ain't no Dog). If you remember that song, you're "of a certain age".

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  • ScottMP
    ScottMP Member Posts: 5,884
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    Leo Fender

    was the manufacturer of the first mass-produced electric guitar. Leo founded the Fender Electric Instrument Manufacturing Company.

    The invention of the electric amplified instrument helped herald in the demise of the Big Band era and the start of the small group band. Four or five members of a group could fill a hall with the same sound or more that a large band could.

    His first instrument was the Broadcaster and then the Telecaster, but it was the Stratocaster that was the big mark in music. The "whammy bar" would change the way music sounded.

    Although he could not play he was inducted into both the Rock and Roll and Country Music Halls of Fame.

    Sort of the Gill Carlson of Rock and Roll :)

    Scott


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  • Bill W@Honeywell
    Bill W@Honeywell Member Posts: 164
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    Big rivalry between Leo and Les Paul...

    Les Paul was (and still is)one of the all-time guitar greats. His pioneering work with Mary Ford on vocals was some amazing stuff. Les played Gibson hollow-body guitars, developed jointly by himself and Gibson, and Gibson derided the Fender solid-bodies as toneless, too flashy etc. Les had developed a semi-solid body guitar on his own, and when Fender began to seriously erode Gibson's customer base, they were ready to listen to Les and the result was the legenday Les Paul Gibson, owned & played by every rock legend and country star. Fender was associated with the "West Coast" sound, car & surfer music; while Gibson was more common with East coast rockers and country singers. I have a retired Fender acoutic 12 string that went thru a lot with me back in the 60's, and some day I'll get it repaired. I remember(reluctantly) my first garage band with my cousin and serveral other neighborhood lowlives, with our Silvertone guitars and amps (Sears)...we dreamed of a Fender Strat or even a Tele, never realizing that talent was also required, not just a good guitar. AHH, the life of a rock star...NOT!
  • ScottMP
    ScottMP Member Posts: 5,884
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    I saw a special on PBS

    about Les Paul and Mary Ford. Having never really listened before , I was amazed, impressed and now understand why the man was held in such high esteem.

    Scott

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  • Timco
    Timco Member Posts: 3,040
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    If you check ebay, you will see some original early 50's strats and teles...some for $15K and more! I am a guild man. I think I will try Rickenbacker next...

    T
    Just a guy running some pipes.
  • radioconnection_2
    radioconnection_2 Member Posts: 70
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    Hey Scott, remember this?

    Stillwater - Mindbender (Jimmy Hall on vocals)

    While browsing through a pawnshop
    I saw this old guitar
    its keys were bent and rusted
    its body scratched and scared
    holy moses!
    would you believe that guitar began to talk

    I started thinkin
    I wasn't stoned nor drinkin
    when I heard that talkin guitar say

    My daddy was a Gibson
    my mother was a Fender
    That's why they call me
    Mindbender
    Mindbender
    that's my name
    You better believe it
    it was a mind bending thing

    I said now listen guitar
    what you tryin to do
    people will think i'm crazy
    if they see me talkin to you

    I said you'd better hold your tongue
    it started I was thinkin
    I wasn't stoned nor drinkin
    when I swear I heard that guitar say

    My daddy was a Gibson
    my mother was a Fender
    that's why they call me
    Minderbender
    Mindbender
    that's my name, my name

    you'd better believe it brother
    it was a mind bending thing
    Oh no
    Oh no
    Oh no
    Oh no
  • Steamhead (in transit)
    Steamhead (in transit) Member Posts: 6,688
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    I think

    that may have been what inspired Peter Frampton's playing on "Show Me The Way".

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  • Mad Dog_2
    Mad Dog_2 Member Posts: 6,965
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    Wow is he still alive?

    And....dont forget the impact of the first electric bass...the Telecaster bass....and THEN the Bass that changed it all - The fender Precision. Mad Dog

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  • Ken D.
    Ken D. Member Posts: 836
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    Fender

    I own a twangy Telecaster guitar and I used to own a Gibson Coronado. I'm not an accomplished guitarist, by any means, so I don't have a Stratocaster or a Les Paul. I just like the Telecaster sound.
  • Perry_3
    Perry_3 Member Posts: 498
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    Les Paul returned to Wisconsin recently

    to say hi to his freinds and give a concert in his home town...

    Tough ticket to get... at any price... is a vast understatement of how dificult it was to get a ticket unless you had pre-subscribed to all concert tickets for the year or were one of the very luck ones who got there right away when it was announced.

    I didn't make the concert... but do know some who tried to get tickets (and were not successful).

    Perry
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,528
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    Les Paul

    plays every Monday night at Iridium in NYC. It's a small club and a great show.
    Retired and loving it.
  • Bill W@Honeywell
    Bill W@Honeywell Member Posts: 164
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    Thanks, Dan.

    I couldn't remember which club it was. Iridium features some of the best music around. Catch the Les PAul show while you can. You don't get to see a living national treasure every day.
  • DanHolohan
    DanHolohan Member, Moderator, Administrator Posts: 16,528
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    And do it soon.

    Les is 92 years old.
    Retired and loving it.
  • Ken D.
    Ken D. Member Posts: 836
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    Les Paul

    Was and is an innovator and creator in every sense of the word. So many musicians owe him a huge debt.
  • ScottMP
    ScottMP Member Posts: 5,884
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    MAN

    I wish I lived closer to the Big Apple. What a show to catch and Every Monday at 92 ????

    I can only hope..

    Scott

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  • mtfallsmikey
    mtfallsmikey Member Posts: 765
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    My fav Fender

    Actually is the 'ole Jaguar. Is the Parsons-White stringbender, or similar device still made?
  • John_102
    John_102 Member Posts: 119
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    Les Paul story on NPR

    Yesterday's broadcast included a Les Paul interview/story. Go to the NPR website if you missed it.

    As coincidence occasionally conspires, I was in the midst of transferring New Sounds Vol 2. from LP to CD. Still remarkable after 55 years. More than I can say for myself....
This discussion has been closed.