- Bruce J. Evensen
Paul, Les (9 June 1915–12 Aug. 2009), jazz guitarist and electric guitar pioneer, was born Lester William Polsfuss in Waukesha, Wisconsin to German parents, George William Polsfuss, a mechanic, and Evelyn Stutz Polsfuss. Evelyn was a music lover who wanted her younger of two sons to play the piano, but Les preferred the harmonica. At twelve he bought a $3.95 guitar from Sears. A year later he connected it to a radio’s electric circuit and played his amplified instrument under the name Red Hot Red at Beekman’s Barbecue Stand in Brookfield. By the age of sixteen he was performing on WRJN in Racine, and WISN, WHAD, and WTMJ in Milwaukee. In the summer of ...