Lang was the first single-string soloist. He played the melody on one string while adding occasional chords. He demonstrated that the guitar could be an instrument for accompaniment like the piano.

While most bands of the time had a banjo player, Lang was skilled enough to make his acoustic guitar heard in the mix. He was so influential that, according to George Van Eps, banjo players had no choice but to switch to guitar.

Lang played Gibson L-4 and L-5 guitars.