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Influential guitarist Bert Weedon dies


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Influential guitarist Bert Weedon, best known for creating the popular tutorial manual Play In A Day, has died aged 91.

Eric Clapton, Paul McCartney and Brian May are among the stars who learned to play guitar from his books.

Born in east London, in May 1920, he had been ill for some time and died at his home in Beaconsfield, his friend John Adrian said.

He was awarded an OBE in the 2001 Queen's Birthday Honours List for his services to music.

Singer and guitarist Joe Brown described Weedon as "a lovely man and a great inspiration to many British guitar players, including myself, in the early days".

He added: "My heart goes out to his lovely wife Maggie and the family."

Speaking to BBC News, radio presenter Mike Read said: "He was the guy who showed you how to play a guitar. Everybody bought his Play In A Day book, it was a big deal.

"He became the daddy of British guitarists and he inspired generations of schoolboys to play. His book enabled them to do just that, which was fantastic."

Aged 12, Weedon picked up his first guitar after convincing his father to buy him a second-hand one from a London market.

As a child, he studied classical guitar - a grounding which later enabled him to play any genre of guitar music at sight.

Great demand

He began his career in showbusiness working with Ted Heath, Mantovani and The Squadronnaires, before becoming a featured soloist with the BBC Show Band.

_59760168_59760167.jpg

Weedon was awarded an OBE in the 2001 Queen's Birthday Honours List for his services to music

As a solo guitarist, he had many hits, including Guitar Boogie Shuffle, Apache and Nashville Boogie. In 1976 he became the first solo guitar player to top the Official Top 40 album charts with 22 Golden Guitar Greats.

He was later in great demand with stars such as Sir Cliff Richard and Tommy Steele.

Weedon also accompanied artists such as Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Nat King Cole and Judy Garland.

Bond composer David Arnold paid tribute to Weedon on the micro-blogging site Twitter saying his passing was "sad news".

He added: "Learned my first chords from Play in a Day."

Stars have previously paid tribute to the musician, thanking him for helping them to learn the guitar.

"Thank you for all those tips on guitar playing that I got from your book, when I was young," Clapton said.

Queen guitarist Brian May called him a "legend" and thanked him for "spreading the guitar and your enthusiasm to all of us".

Sir Paul revealed that both he and George Harrison used Weedon's manuals to learn the chords D and A, and John Lennon admitted he began playing the guitar using Play in a Day.

The Cure, meanwhile, wrote a short instrumental called The Weedy Burtons, which featured as a hidden track on their debut album Three Imaginary Boys in 1979.

"I'd taught myself to play a bit by reading Bert Weedon's Play In A Day books using my older brother's guitar," said Robert Smith. "It's a sort of tongue in cheek tribute to Bert."

The tutorial book begins with simple illustrations of acoustic and electric guitars, before showing the reader how to hold the instrument.

The first pieces of music for the student to learn include Bobby Shaftoe, Jingle Bells and When the Saints Go Marching In.

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Influential guitarist Bert Weedon, best known for creating the popular tutorial manual Play In A Day, has died aged 91.

Eric Clapton, Paul McCartney and Brian May are among the stars who learned to play guitar from his books.

Born in east London, in May 1920, he had been ill for some time and died at his home in Beaconsfield, his friend John Adrian said.

He was awarded an OBE in the 2001 Queen's Birthday Honours List for his services to music.

Singer and guitarist Joe Brown described Weedon as "a lovely man and a great inspiration to many British guitar players, including myself, in the early days".

He added: "My heart goes out to his lovely wife Maggie and the family."

Speaking to BBC News, radio presenter Mike Read said: "He was the guy who showed you how to play a guitar. Everybody bought his Play In A Day book, it was a big deal.

"He became the daddy of British guitarists and he inspired generations of schoolboys to play. His book enabled them to do just that, which was fantastic."

Aged 12, Weedon picked up his first guitar after convincing his father to buy him a second-hand one from a London market.

As a child, he studied classical guitar - a grounding which later enabled him to play any genre of guitar music at sight.

Great demand

He began his career in showbusiness working with Ted Heath, Mantovani and The Squadronnaires, before becoming a featured soloist with the BBC Show Band.

_59760168_59760167.jpg

Weedon was awarded an OBE in the 2001 Queen's Birthday Honours List for his services to music

As a solo guitarist, he had many hits, including Guitar Boogie Shuffle, Apache and Nashville Boogie. In 1976 he became the first solo guitar player to top the Official Top 40 album charts with 22 Golden Guitar Greats.

He was later in great demand with stars such as Sir Cliff Richard and Tommy Steele.

Weedon also accompanied artists such as Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Nat King Cole and Judy Garland.

Bond composer David Arnold paid tribute to Weedon on the micro-blogging site Twitter saying his passing was "sad news".

He added: "Learned my first chords from Play in a Day."

Stars have previously paid tribute to the musician, thanking him for helping them to learn the guitar.

"Thank you for all those tips on guitar playing that I got from your book, when I was young," Clapton said.

Queen guitarist Brian May called him a "legend" and thanked him for "spreading the guitar and your enthusiasm to all of us".

Sir Paul revealed that both he and George Harrison used Weedon's manuals to learn the chords D and A, and John Lennon admitted he began playing the guitar using Play in a Day.

The Cure, meanwhile, wrote a short instrumental called The Weedy Burtons, which featured as a hidden track on their debut album Three Imaginary Boys in 1979.

"I'd taught myself to play a bit by reading Bert Weedon's Play In A Day books using my older brother's guitar," said Robert Smith. "It's a sort of tongue in cheek tribute to Bert."

The tutorial book begins with simple illustrations of acoustic and electric guitars, before showing the reader how to hold the instrument.

The first pieces of music for the student to learn include Bobby Shaftoe, Jingle Bells and When the Saints Go Marching In.

Wait...let me get my bi focals to read this article you posted...;)

No, all kidding aside, RIP. Amazing talent. Yet another member of the Greatest Generation gone.

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from blabbermouth.

Bert Weedon, a British guitarist whose "Play in a Day" guitar guide taught the instrument to a generation of young hopefuls, died on Friday at his home in Beaconsfield, in the English county of Buckinghamshire. He was 91.

BLACK SABBATH bassist Geezer Butler has posted the following message on Weedon's passing: "I had stopped commenting on deaths and disasters, because my [online] 'journal' was starting to resemble an obituary column. However, I cannot ignore the passing of Bert Weedon. Some of you won't have heard of him, but I can safely say that many U.K. and Ireland guitarists from John Lennon onwards throughout the 1960s and '70s would probably have never learned to play without Bert Weedon's 'Play In A Day' book. He produced a book with pictures of chords, rather than musical notation, making it possible for those of us who couldn't afford music lessons, or didn't read music, to gradually learn basic chords on the guitar. I know BLACK SABBATH wouldn't exist without his book, since both Tony Iommi and myself learned to play guitar chords from it. RIP Bert!"

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