A Brief History of the Electric Guitar

electric guitar

Those who have seen a band play live, will often find that the band includes an electric guitar. However, what do you really know about the electric guitar? Most people’s knowledge of the electric guitar is limited to the fact that it utilizes an amp to be heard and electricity. Other than that, people often overlook this popular instrument.

The Electric Guitar: The Early Years

Electric guitars were needed in the music setting. Bands were finding that acoustic guitars simply were not producing the loud notes that they needed to be heard. Thus, the need for such a guitar was evident, it simply needed to be designed and manufactured. There were several people who had the idea of making this type of guitar a reality. Those who know anything about electric guitars often attribute Les Paul with inventing the guitar. However, it was really a musician by the name George Beauchamp, and an electrical engineer by the name of Adolph Rickenbacker. It wasn’t until 1931, that the first available electric guitar came to the market, known affectionately as the “frying pan”.

How Electric Guitars Work

For those who are not familiar with the electric guitar, the basics of how this work are not hard to understand. First off, the electric guitar has a solid and thin body versus the hollow body of an acoustic guitar, a major difference that greatly affects the sound. What makes for that interesting sound that is associated with the electric guitar are the magnet pickups found in the guitar. Most of these guitars are going to contain two to three pickups in them, which are basically magnets wrapped in copper wire.

The amp is used with the electric guitar to get that loudness that people are wanting. It can be used without it, but it is not going to reach the volume that most people want when playing an electric guitar.

Fun Facts about Electric Guitars

  • The first recording of an electric guitar was made in 1933 by musicians in Hawaii
  • Electric guitars are considered to be one of the most notable instruments in all of music in terms of how this affecting genres of music
  • One of the most notable electric guitarists was Jimi Hendrix
  • These guitars are made for both left and right handed players
  • There are several string options including 7, 8, 9 and 12 stringed options, five necked guitar and the like

The electric guitar has had a profound effect on the music world. It is with the electric guitar that musicians are able to get louder notes, and to make those new sounds that make the music world what it is. Without the electric guitar, some of the most notable songs that have become anthems for some people would not have been thought of.

The Music of the 1960’s


With every generation, there are songs that make it to the top of the billboard list, and are forever seared into the mind of those who listen to these songs.  The 1960’s are no exception to this rule. When people talk about the 1960’s, they often think of the Beetles and the Rolling Stones. After all, this was two of the biggest bands during this time who were competing for the attention of the world. The 60’s also represents the incoming British Invasion of music to the United States, a style of music that the US went wild for, as can be seen with the success of the Beetles and the Rolling Stones.

The Top 10 Songs of the 1960’s

This decade encompasses some great music that is still being listened to today. The 60’s was when rock and roll started to change, and there seemed to be a battle taking place between new age rock and roll, like the Rolling Stones and Beetles, from old age rock and roll, like Elvis Presley.

Billboard is the go to source for music ratings, as they keep track of the number of listens that a song gets, the reception to radio and the like. For the 1960’s, there are several songs that can be remembered, but the top 10 songs are:

  1. “The Twist” by Chubby Checker
  2. “Hey Jude” by The Beatles
  3. “The Theme from ‘A Summer Place’” by Percy Faith and His Orchestra
  4. “Tossin’ and Turnin’” by Bobby Lewis
  5. “I Want to Hold Your Hand” by the Beatles
  6. “I’m a Believer” by the Monkees
  7. “Aquarius/Let the Sunshine In” by The 5th Dimension
  8. “Sugar, Sugar” by the Archies
  9. “I Heard It Through the Grapevine” by the Marvin Gaye
  10. “Are You Lonesome Tonight?” by Elvis Presley with the Jordanaires

What Was Learned from Music of the 60’s

There are those who would view the 60’s as nothing special, while the bulk majority of people throughout the world would say that the music of the 60’s paved the road for what music is today. During the 60’s, it was a time of re-birth in the world of music. Artists started to make music they wanted, and the masses were given options as to what was popular. Whether the person wanted to hear rock and roll, folk rock, or even Motown, they had this option during the 60’s.

The 1960’s was a time of music expression and freedom. That is why the music that was produced during this generation is some of the most beloved songs of all time!