"The Singing Troubador
American entertainer (1897
), born Dominic Nicholas Anthony Lucanes, known for introducing two things into the American pop music lexicon
: the guitar
(in the 1920s
, the banjo
and the piano
were the instruments of choice in popular music
). In 1922
, he became the first guitar star, with two original instrumental
hits: "Pickin' the Guitar" and "Teasin' the Fret
s." The Gibson Guitar
company, suffering from a decline in the mandolin orchestra
(and whose banjos were not selling well), offered to custom build a guitar for Lucas in 1924
. Lucas' success and endorsement was key to the growth of Gibson.
His second contribution: "Tiptoe Through the Tulips," which he played on his custom Gibson on Broadway. The song was a number one hit for 10 weeks.
Lucas would appear on television on The Ed Sullivan Show, and contribute songs to film versions of The Great Gatsby and Day of the Locust.