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Les Paul Big Sound Experience
Interactive Traveling Exhibit Celebrates 100th Birthday of “Father of Modern Rock”

ALBANY (April 14, 2016)(Updated May 4, 2016) – Les Paul: two words that describe the foundation of generations of rock and recorded music.

Now, the Capital Region has the chance to “meet” the rock pioneer and inventor at a free interactive traveling exhibit on The College of Saint Rose campus.

Saint Rose is hosting Les Paul’s Big Sound Experience, a 53-foot mobile tour, Wednesday, May 4, and Thursday, May 5, at the William Randolph Hearst Center for Communications and Interactive Media, 996 Madison Ave., Albany, New York. Exhibit hours both days are noon-8 p.m.

The giant, state-of-the-art traveling exhibit takes visitors behind the scenes and into the world of the music legend. Guests are able to mix and share music, explore Paul’s sound, music and technology innovations, witness how Paul pushed the limits of audio technology and learn how Paul’s inventions and techniques have formed the foundation of live and recorded music enjoyed by generations. An interactive digital experience allows visitors to create their own 20-second sound recording and share their “new sound” via social media. Guests can memorialize their visit with a fun photo capture experience that places them in the picture with a classic image of Paul to save, send and post to social networks. A double-sided listening station allows visitors to hear performances from all periods of Paul’s long career.

In addition, the Saint Rose music industry program will celebrate Paul’s contributions with a special tribute concert and a live demonstration of his advancements and techniques:

  • Faculty members Paul Evoskevich, Matthew Finck, Andrew McKenna Lee and Sean McClowry will perform Paul’s compositions, songs he made popular and new music inspired by his inventions and technical achievements in concert Wednesday, May 4, at 8 p.m. in the Massry Center for the Arts, 1002 Madison Ave., Albany;
  • Lecture and demonstration by Sean McClowry of Paul’s many achievements and their value to the modern digital recording studio Thursday, May 5, at 2:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. in “Jack’s Place” inside the Hearst Center, 996 Madison Ave., Albany.

The exhibit and events are free and open to the public.

“Many of the advancements in recorded music and the modern recording studio were discovered or championed by this great musician, engineer, producer and inventor,” said McClowry, an assistant professor of music industry. “Multi-track recording, delay, reverb and the solid-body electric guitar were all achievements of a very creative musician who had a quest for a new sound that would alter the conventions of his time.”


Born Lester William Polsfuss, Paul was the father of the solid-body electric guitar and inventor of multi-track recording, overdubbing – also known as sound on sound – delay effects, electronic echo and many other innovations that recording artists use every day.

Known also as the “The Wizard of Waukesha,” “Rhubarb Red,” “The Father of Modern Music” and others, Paul’s curiosity about sound began at a very young age. While in high school he made his first solid-body electric guitar using a piece of rail from a nearby train line. Years later the rail guitar evolved into Paul’s famous 4-by-4 piece of pine that he wired as a guitar and dubbed “The Log.” It was the basis for the electric guitar that changed the face of music.

Contemporary artists such as Slash, ZZ Top’s Billy Gibbons, Green Day’s Billie Joe Armstrong, Jimmy Page and many others have paid homage to Paul throughout their careers. Musicians from every genre have credited Paul for their careers. Numerous museum exhibits and awards continue to celebrate Paul’s innovations and accomplishments.

The GRAMMY® Award winner was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1988.

The Les Paul 100th Anniversary is a year-long celebration of Paul’s life and includes events and programs, tours, promotional campaigns and education grants securing his legacy for generations.

For more information about the educational technology behind Les Paul’s Big Sound Experience, visit

For more information about the Les Paul’s Big Sound Experience at Saint Rose, contact Sal Prizio, Massry Center programming manager, at or phone 518-337-4871.



For More Information, Contact:

Benjamin Marvin
Director of Media Relations