Charlie Byrd was a jazz guitarist whose guitar of choice was a classical guitar. Although many other jazz guitarists have recorded occasionally on acoustic guitars, few made it their main instrument. Charlie Byrd took classical guitar seriously and for a time studied with the great classical guitarists, Andre Segovia. Another guitarist that strongly influenced Charlie Byrd was Django Reinhardt.
Byrd was a great bebop guitarists but one of his most important contributions was introducing jazz audiences in the United States to Brazilian Samba and Bossa Nova styles of jazz. He and Stan Getz recorded Jazz Samba in 1962.
Byrd later played with the “Great Guitars”, an ensemble that included Herb Ellis and Barnie Kessel.