Entertainment & Arts

Jeff Beck honours Les Paul with intimate New York gig

Jeff Beck performs at the Iridium Jazz Club
Image caption Beck performed on what would have been Paul's 95th birthday

Musician Jeff Beck has honoured his late friend and mentor, Les Paul, with an intimate gig in New York.

The legendary British guitarist performed at the Iridium Jazz Club - where Paul played every Monday night - in front of a celebrity crowd.

Meat Loaf and Metallica's Kirk Hammett were among the rock stars who watched the two-hour gig at the basement club.

Rock guitar pioneer Paul died in August last year. He would have been 95 on Wednesday.

Tribute songs

Beck was joined on stage by Dublin-based rockabilly quartet The Imelda May Band.

May also shared vocals with Beck on songs like How High The Moon and Vaya con Dios, which were made famous by Paul and Mary Ford.

Outside of the tribute, Beck covered Walking In The Sand, Sleepwalk and The Peter Gunn Theme.

The set ended with Bill Haley's Rock Around the Clock and Shake, Rattle, and Roll.

Speaking after the gig, Meat Loaf spoke reverently about Beck's guitar playing.

"How does he do it? His playing comes from a place in the heart that exists in so few people.

"It's like the performance by that guy in the Godfather II (John Cazale) and how he overshadowed Al Pacino."

E Street Band guitarist Van Zandt it was "the best show I ever seen in my life".

Metallica's Hammett added: "He does everything with a smile while you're asking yourself, 'How the hell does he do that?'"

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