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Lou Pallo, Rhythm Guitarist For The Les Paul Trio, Dead At 86

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(CelebrityAccess) — Guitarist Lou Pallo, “the man of a million chords” who performed as part of the Les Paul Trio for almost 30 years, died on Wednesday. He was 86.

Pallo made a name for himself as part of the unofficial “Jersey Guitar Mafia” a prominent group of studio musicians who worked in studios in the tri-state area in the 1950s and 1960s.

According to, Paul met Pallo when he began attending Pallo’s performances at Molly’s Fish Market in Oakland in the 1980s. The visits led to Paul eventually sitting in and ultimately launching a three-decade residency for the Les Paul Trio, first at New York club Fat Tuesday’s, then at the Iridium.

“We never really rehearsed,” bassist Gary Mazzaroppi told “Les wouldn’t tell you what he was going to play. He wouldn’t tell you what key he was playing in. We would just start playing. Lou had no problem with that whatsoever.”

Following news of Pallo’s passing, tributes for the late artist poured in from the industry and his colleagues.

“It is with great sadness to learn that the great Lou Pallo has passed away, the man of a million chords,” the Les Paul museum said. “Lou was a tremendous friend and supporter to us at the Mahwah Museum. We will miss him very much.”

“He is admired by many of the world’s greatest musicians and made his mark on many of us. What he has left us is an abundance of amazing musical sounds, memories of shows that just can’t ever be duplicated and a sense of an era that profoundly changed the music industry,” the Les Paul Foundation said in a seperate statement.

Rolling Stone Keith Richards also noted Pallo’s passing with a social media post, tweeting: “Lou Pallo, Rest in Peace dear friend.”

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