Les Paul, Guitar Legend, 1915–2009

Guitarist and inventor Les Paul — who invented the device that made the electric guitar possible — died Aug. 13 at the age of 94.

Paul’s contributions to rock ‘n’ roll went well beyond one gadget. He designed guitars — vintage models were selling for thousands of dollars even before news of his death came — and made the first multi-track recorder. He introduced innovations that established the recording studio itself as a legitimate musical instrument. And in doing so, he shaped much of the genre’s sound.