From the Globe & Mail / AP :

Guitar player Link Wray, who invented the power chord, the major modus operandi of modern rock guitarists, has died. He was 76.

The date of Wray’s death was not known. He lived in Copenhagen.

Denmark’s Politiken newspaper said his funeral had already taken place in Copenhagen’s Christian Church. No dates were given.

Though I’m loathe to make a statement as bold as “Link Wray invented distortion”, the North Carolinan certainly had as much to do with creating the rock guitar blueprint and expanding the instrument’s sonic potential as any player. There’s a big chunk of your record collection that either wouldn’t exist or would’ve turned out quite differently were it not for Link Wray.