Eddie Lang

Biography

In the late 1920s, Lang played guitar in a way that would influence every major artist after him, from Django Reinhardt and Charlie Christian to Wes Montgomery. His bright, percussive single note runs validated the guitar as a solo instrument, while his complex chordal work broadened the scope of the instrument's role in accompaniment. His duets with violinist Joe Venuti were later mirrored beautifully by Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli, and his vibrant work with pioneers like Bix Beiderbecke, Frankie Trumbauer and Red Nichols remain a part of the beautiful foundation of jazz. The recordings that Lang -- under the pseudonym Blind Willie Dunn -- made with fellow guitarist Lonnie Johnson are essential guitar classics, highlighting the subtle relationship between early jazz and blues.
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