Influential Guitarist, Bert Weedon, Dies

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

The guitarist, who was born in East London in 1920, had been ill for some time and later died at his home in Beaconsfield. Amongst some of the stars who leaned to play the guitar using his books are Eric Clapton, Paul McCartney and Brian May. Singer and guitarist, Joe Brown paid his condolences to Weedon's family:

"he was a lovely man and a great inspiration to many British guitar players, including myself, in the early days. My heart goes out to his lovely wife Maggie and the family."

In 2001, Weedon was awarded an OBE for his services to music and is credited with helping some of the best-known guitar heros to play the instrument. Mike Read, radio presenter, explained Weedon's status in the guitar world:

"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."

Weedon's childhood was an extremely musical one, picking up his first guitar at the age of 12 after convincing his father to buy him a second-hand one from a London market. His early study and grounding in the Classical music genre enabled him to sight-read with amazing ability. He became a features soloist with the BBC Show Band, later having many hits including Guitar Boogie Shuffle, Apache and Nashville Boogie, and in 1976 he was the first solo guitarist to top the Official Top 40 album chart with 22 Golden Guitar Heads.

Further on in his career, Weedon's playing skills were in great demand with the likes of Sir Cliff Richard and Tommy Steele and he also went on to accompany stars such as Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Rosemary Clooney, Nat King Cole and Judy Garland.

Numerous musicians have payed their respects for the late guitarist, with Queen legend, Brian May thanking him for "spreading the guitar and your enthusiasm to all of us". It was also revealed by Sir Paul McCartney that both he and George Harrison used Weedon's books to learn the chords D and A.

You'll be missed, Bert!