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Tickets on sale for Les Paul's 100th birthday bash in Times Square

A yearlong celebration for what would have been Les Paul's 100th year begins with a New York City concert

Tickets are on sale for the big 100th birthday bash in New York honoring Les Paul, guitarist and a pioneer of the modern electric guitar.

The event is to feature performances by rocker Steve Miller, Journey's Neal Schon, blues rocker Joe Bonamassa and others. The June 9 celebration is set for the Hard Rock Cafe in Times Square.

The concert will kick off a yearlong celebration to mark Paul's 100th birthday. Paul died in 2009 at the age of 94.

Tickets, which went on sale Monday, cost $125 (plus handling fee) to attend the evening for which musicians are still being added. The red-carpet greeting is scheduled to start at 6 p.m., with performances beginning at 8:30 p.m.

A mobile exhibit called Les Paul's Big Sound Experience will debut at Times Square. Fans can tour it for free and explore Paul's sound and inventions.

The Big Sound Experience will tour the country until May 2016.

Paul, whose real name was Lester William Polsfuss, grew up in Waukesha, Wis., where he began making his own musical instruments as a teenager. He changed music with the introduction of the solid-body electric guitar that defined the sound of rock 'n' roll.

He also invented the neck-worn harmonica holder (think Bob Dylan) and the eight-track recorder as well as other recording innovations. Paul and his wife, Mary Ford, were popular singers and performers in the 1950s with jazz, country and blues songs. 

In 1988, Paul was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland, and he's No. 18 on the list of 100 Greatest Guitarists compiled by Rolling Stone magazine.

Info: Buy tickets to the 100th Anniversary of Les Paul at TicketWeb. For information about the Big Sound Experience and other anniversary events, go to the Les Paul website.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times
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