Les Paul honored with Google Doodle guitar for 96th birthday

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Jazz and country guitarist Les Paul may have died in 2009, but that hasn't stopped Google from honoring the electric guitar pioneer on his 2011 birthday.

June 9 marks the 96th anniversary of Paul's birth. Google decided to commemorate the occasion with one of its more elaborate Doodles to date -- a working electric guitar, whose strings turn into Google's primary colors when scrolled over with a cursor.

You can even hit a button to record and play back your own little ditty.

Paul did not "invent" the solid body electric guitar, but he was the first to popularize it. The Gibson Les Paul, perhaps the most well known electric guitar on the market today, was a collaboration between Paul and Gibson's Ted McCarty. It was invented in 1952.

The guitarist himself enjoyed a long, rich career, which resulted in him being one of only a handful of musicians to have a permanent, stand-alone exhibit in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Les Paul died at 94 of complications from pneumonia. He continued to perform live up until a few weeks before his death.
Photo/Video credit: Google