Loar, Lloyd A(llayre)
- Hugh Davies
(b Cropsey, IL, Jan 9, 1886; d Chicago, IL, Sept 14, 1943). American musician and pioneer in the development of the electric guitar. He studied music at Oberlin College and for several years performed professionally on string instruments under management of the Chicago Musical Bureau. From 1911, while performing and composing for the Gibson Mandolin-Guitar Manufacturing Co. of Kalamazoo, Michigan, he developed ideas for improving and diversifying mandolin construction. After post-World War I musical studies in Paris he returned to Chicago, where he resumed work for Gibson (as a designer and acoustical engineer from 1919) and in 1921 received a master’s degree in theory and composition from the American Conservatory of Music. Later, Loar taught acoustics at Northwestern University for 13 years and published a number of method books and musical arrangements.
Having failed to convince Gibson of the potential success of an electric guitar based on an electrostatic pickup that he had developed in ...