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Les Paul gets 'Google Doodle' for 96th birthday

04/15/2011 by Corinne Heller

Les Paul, who would have turned 96 on Thursday, June 9, has been honored as the star of Google's latest "Google Doodle" on the search engine giant's main page.

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The famed jazz and country guitarist, who has a Gibson guitar named after him, died in 2009 at age 94 after battling pneumonia. The Google Doodle plays electric guitar sounds when you hover over its illustrated strings, which can be recorded and played back.

Les Paul, who was born Lester William Polsfuss, was touted as one of the best electric guitar players of all time and has been honored at events throughout the years by musicians such as Steve Miller, Peter Frampton, Slash, Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora. The rock band The Who was among those who marked the anniversary of his birth with a Facebook message on Thursday.

Google often swaps out its generic "Google" logo on its main search page for colorful illustrations honoring pop culture icons or events. In April, silent film actor Charlie Chaplin was honored as the star of Google's first live-action video "Google Doodle" on would have been his 122nd birthday.

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