Yesterday Mrs I Heart Guitar gave me this awesome book, The Story Of Paul Bigsby – Father Of The Modern Electric Solidbody Guitar, by Andy Babiuk. It was a birthday present from my Amazon.com wish list, but sometimes one has to wait a while for stuff to make it from Amazon headquarters to Australia.
I only flipped through the book last night so I’m not ready to publish a review of it, but here’s some info from the publisher:
The Story of Paul Bigsby
Father of the Modern Electric Solidbody Guitar
By Andy Babiuk
“The history of the solidbody electric guitar has been documented many times, and important early innovators include George Beauchamp, Adolph Rickenbacker, Doc Kauffman, Lloyd Loar, and Paul Tutmarc. It’s widely accepted that Les Paul and Leo Fender were responsible for sparking the electric guitar revolution and making invaluable contributions. However, their work might not have been possible without the man who had designed and built the first modern solidbody electric guitar.”
“That man was Paul Adelbert Bigsby. He made the first modern solidbody electric for musician Merle Travis, completing the instrument in May 1948. Nothing like it had been seen before. Every electric guitarist today should be grateful that Paul Bisgby did what he did back then. He changed the look and sound of the guitar forever.”
This untold story of Paul Bigsby is documented for the first time and will also tell how Bigsby, using his engineering mind and problem-solving skills, designed and developed a revolutinary guitar vibrato that is still considered by many as the best type ever built-the Bigsby True Vibrato.
Book features include:
Deluxe, well-illustrated coffee table book with over 300 color and black-and-white photos
Many unpublished photos of over 50 actual Bigsby instrument photos
An audio CD of Paul Bigsby himself, recorded in the late 1950s, telling stories about his business