Who was Les Paul?

Les Paul was the inventor of the solid body electric guitar, multi-track recording, echo, overdubbing, and many other recording techniques. He often is referred to as the “Father of Modern Music” and the “Wizard of Waukesha”, his Wisconsin hometown. Les Paul’s inventions revolutionized the music industry.

When was Les Paul born?

Les Paul was born on June 9, 1915.

What year did Les Paul pass?

Les Paul passed away on August 12, 2009 at the age of 94.

Where was Les Paul born?

Les Paul was born in Waukesha, Wisconsin

What is the Les Paul Foundation?

The mission of the Les Paul Foundation is to inspire innovative and creative thinking by sharing the legacy of Les Paul through the support of music education, recording, engineering, innovation and medical research related to hearing. The Les Paul Foundation was created by Les while he was alive.  The Les Paul Foundation is an approved IRC 501(c)3 organization. The Foundation has awarded over $4,000,000 to nonprofit organizations that reflect its mission. 

How do I apply for a Grant from the Les Paul Foundation?

The Les Paul Foundation awards grants to programs and projects that encourage innovation in music production and/or performance and to innovative STEM and STEAM programs for students and others in challenging situations. To apply for a grant visit the website.

Where can I visit a Les Paul Museum Exhibit?

Les Paul exhibits are at Discovery World (Milwaukee, Wisconsin), The Mahwah Museum (Mahwah, New Jersey), The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum (Cleveland, Ohio), The Waukesha County Historical Society & Museum (Waukesha, Wisconsin) The Grammy Museum (Newark, New Jersey), The Musical Instrument Museum (Phoenix, Arizona).

Where did Les Paul live most of his life?

Les lived in Mahwah, New Jersey for over 50 years. He also lived in Waukesha, WI; St. Louis, MO; Springfield, MO; Chicago, IL; and Hollywood, CA.

Who were Les Paul’s greatest influences?

His mother Evelyn, the legendary guitarist, Django Reinhardt, and the TV and movie recording artist and performer, Bing Crosby.

What is the Les Paul guitar?

There are multiple versions of the Gibson Les Paul solid body electric guitar that bear his iconic signature on the headstock. There also are multiple versions of the Epiphone guitar with Les Paul’s name.

Where is the Iridium Jazz Club where Les played every Monday night?

The Iridium Jazz Club is located in Times Square, New York. 

Who was Mary Ford?

Mary Ford, Les Paul’s wife and performance partner, was born Iris Colleen Summers. Les gave her the stage name of Mary Ford. The duo had numerous hit records in the 1950s, had their own radio and television shows and were frequent guests on television network and radio shows.

Where can I buy Les Paul merchandise?

You can visit the store on the website.

Are there any buildings or roads named for Les Paul?

The junior high and high schools Les attended in Waukesha, Wisconsin are now merged into the Les Paul Middle School. The Waukesha band shell where Les performed as a teen is known now as the Les Paul Performance Center. Les was delighted when Waukesha named the by-pass around the city Les Paul Parkway.

What is the writing in the background of several website pages?

Les Paul’s handwritten notes appear as background on some of the website pages.

How many children did Les Paul have?

Five. Les Paul Jr. (known as Rusty or Russ), Gene, Colleen and Bobby. Les Paul and Mary Ford also had a daughter who died as an infant.

Does the Les Paul Foundation authenticate items that may have belonged to Les Paul?

The Les Paul Foundation does not authenticate any items.

What is the significance of the number 193 on the web site's home page under the main navigation?

It’s Les Paul’s designation for Reel # 193. The tape contains multiple versions of “Goodbye My Love”, which was recorded in November, 1954. It was the B- side to “Hummingbird”, which was originally written by Don Robertson. Les Paul and Mary Ford recorded their popular version of “Hummingbird” on July 9, 1955, and it reached #7 on the Billboard chart.

What is the song in the Les Paul Foundation Introduction Video?

The music is an unreleased version of Les Paul performing “Doin’ the Town.” Watch the video.