One Long Tune: The Life and Music of Lenny Breau

Front Cover
University of North Texas Press, 2006 - Music - 325 pages
2 Reviews
Mr. Guitar Chet Atkins called Lenny Breau (1941-1984) the greatest guitarist who ever walked the face of the earth. Breau began playing the instrument at age seven, and went on to master many styles, especially jazz. Between 1968 and 1983 he made a series of recordings that are among the most influential guitar albums of the century. Breau's astonishing virtuosity influenced countless performers, but unfortunately it came at the expense of his personal relationships. Despite Breau's fascinating life story and his musical importance, no full-length biography has been published until now. Forbes-Roberts has interviewed more than 175 people and closely analyzed Breau's recordings to reveal an enormously gifted man and the inner workings of his music.

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Indybeez - LibraryThing

Lenny Breau was perhaps the most gifted guitarist the world has ever produced. That was also the only thing he could do. A kind and gentle soul, he also suffered from crippling battles with drug abuse ... Read full review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

This book opened up a whole new understanding of this wonderful musician and his music. I found it a balanced view, both of his music and his life, with lots of information and insight into both. Altogether, I found it a moving portrait that brought a kind of closeness to this gentle soul and his torments in this world. I think guitarists, especially, will find this book an illuminating read - next to that, musicians and jazz lovers.  


ca 1916October 1948
December 1957April 1960
April 1960May 1962
November 1961May 1963
June 1963December 1967
Photo Section
January 1968September 1972
May 1980November 1983
November 1983August 1984
List of Quoted Interviews Conducted by Author

December 1972July 1976
July 1976May 1980

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

Popular passages

Page 32 - ... that was coming up. I had a lot of narrow escapes. There was a man in our church named Jess Belcher. He was an old timed pilot, way before I ever started flying. He flew Piper Super Cubs. I had never flown in a plane that you had to guide with a stick, but that's the way this one was. We both got in. He was in the front seat, and I was in the back seat. We made a very sorry takeoff. It bounced and bounced. I made the remark, "Jess, that was a pretty bad takeoff." He said, "Well, you was flying...
Page viii - Acknowledgments This book could not have been written without the input of every one of the two-hundred-plus interviewees who kindly shared with me their anecdotes and observations of my subject.

About the author (2006)

Ron Forbes-Roberts is an award-winning journalist and a contributing editor to Acoustic Guitar Magazine. He is a career musician with a degree in classical guitar and lives in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Bibliographic information