13 Dec 2014

Charlie Christian - The Axe-man Cometh

From Jazz on Concert, 1:00 pm on 13 December 2014

Charlie Christian CC BY SA Leo ValdesIn Oklahoma City lived a young man in a purple shirt and yellow shoes who played guitar like no one else.

Pianist Mary Lou Williams heard him and thought he had something. She told music producer John Hammond, who was looking for a guitarist for Benny Goodman's band. The rest is history.

Charlie Christian was one of the first jazz players to specialise in electric guitar and as testament to his aptitude, the Gibson ES-150 is still unofficially known as the ‘Charlie Christian’ guitar.

Steve Danby discusses the man, the guitar, and his rise to fame in Benny Goodman’s band.

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