Best Guitarists Of All Time: 75 Legendary Musicians

From hard rockers to virtuoso jazzers, the best guitarists of all time represent a variety of sounds.

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The guitar is the very backbone of rock – not to mention blues and country music – and the world is a better place to live in thanks to all the six-string geniuses that have come along. The best guitarists of all time include not only the hardest rockers to have picked up the instrument, but the groundbreakers who cleared the way for them. Here’s who we think deserves to sit among the greatest guitarists in history.

Have we missed one of yours? Let us know in the comments section below.

75: Gabor Szabo

It’s surprising that more great rock guitarists (aside from Carlos Santana who famously covered “Gypsy Queen”) haven’t namechecked Gabor Szabo more often, since he was arguably the most rock-friendly of all the mid-60s jazz greats. He was playing fusion and worldbeat before either had a name, and he got into Indian music, on 1966’s landmark Jazz Raga, before George Harrison did. He also took “The Beat Goes On” to places Sonny Bono never imagined.
Check out: “Gypsy Queen”

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74: Joe Satriani

Flashy guitar solos by anybody but Eddie Van Halen were falling out of fashion in the late 80s until Joe Satriani made them fun again. “Surfing With the Alien,” the title track of his hit ‘87 album, was four solid minutes of impossible licks, but the track still had the gonzoid appeal of a vintage surf instrumental. Satriani would turn down numerous lucrative band offers to pursue his solo mix of fusion, metal, and prog.
Check out: “Surfing with the Alien”

73: Nils Lofgren (Crazy Horse, E Street Band)

When you’re a current, full-time member of both Crazy Horse and the E Street Band, your status as a great songwriter’s guitarist is unshakeable. But Nils Lofgren’s no slouch of a songwriter himself, and his solo projects give him more room to stretch out than Bruce Springsteen and Neil Young do. One of his most classic solos occurs in his ode to another guitarist: Check any of the many recorded versions of “Keith Don’t Go.”
Check out: “Keith Don’t Go”

72: Steve Vai

A great guitarist of amazing technical ability, Steve Vai has kept one foot in hard rock, and the other in serious composition. He initially held the coveted “stunt guitar” slot in Frank Zappa’s band, where his offstage exploits earned him the track “Stevie’s Spanking.” During a brief stay with Whitesnake and a longer one with David Lee Roth, he played shredding solos with the best – but check the solo track “Weeping China Doll” to hear him in a more artful context.
Check out: “Weeping China Doll”

71: Don Felder (The Eagles)

Though he ultimately fell out with the band, Don Felder’s importance to the Eagles can’t be overlooked. When he joined for the third album On the Border, they suddenly transformed from tasteful country-rockers to a guitar army. Even after Joe Walsh’s arrival, it was still Felder who provided landmark moments like the long intro to “Hotel California.” The stinging solo on “One of These Nights” may well have been his peak.
Check out: “One of These Nights”

70: Kristin Hersh (Throwing Muses)

As the leader of the perpetually underrated Throwing Muses, Kristin Hersh is also one of the indie rock movement’s most inventive lead players. On the band’s early albums she devised angular and logic-defying lead parts. But they rock even harder nowadays, and the 2020 album Sun Racket is a regular barrage of killer riffs, including the vibrato frenzy on “Dark Blue.” Earlier solo tracks, like the Michael Stipe duet “Your Ghost,” show her elegance on acoustic lead.
Check out: “Dark Blue”

69: Joe Walsh (The Eagles, The James Gang)

He currently provides the big-guitar moments in the Eagles but Joe Walsh really wrote the book in the James Gang, one of America’s first great power trios. Not only did he provide them with killer riffs, but he stretched out to parts unknown in his solos. Check out the Gang’s epic “The Bomber” which starts out between-the-eyes heavy but visits echoed space in the solo; make sure you hear the unedited version (before Maurice Ravel’s estate got in touch) where he throws in a wah-wah “Bolero.”
Check out: “Bolero”

68: Derek Trucks (The Allman Brothers Band, Tedeschi Trucks)

Born into the extended Allman Brothers family (he’s Butch Trucks’ nephew) and named after Eric Clapton’s alter-ego, Derek Trucks was truly born to play his music. He wound up replacing Duane Allman twice, both in the Allman Brothers Band and as Eric Clapton’s guitar foil on a Layla-themed tour (where “Bell Bottom Blues” never sounded better). But Trucks is very much his own man, leading a uniquely soulful jamming band with his music and life partner Susan Tedeschi, a fine guitarist herself.
Check out: “Bell Bottom Blues”

67: Angus Young (AC/DC)

The very existence of AC/DC is a celebration of all things that rock, and that kick-it-out spirit comes through in a timeless solo like “Let There Be Rock,” which throws in all the best cheap thrills: Fast runs, power chords, and finally those orgasmic screaming strums.
Check out: “Let There Be Rock

66: Kirk Hammett (Metallica)

Arguably the premier lead guitarist in 80s metal, Kirk Hammett united the ferocity of thrash with heavy technical dazzle, but could be highly expressive as well – witness the way his solo screams for life on “One.” Less unhinged, but equally impressive, is the brief and beautifully constructed solo on “Sad But True.”
Check out: “Sad But True”

Metallica: Sad But True (Official Music Video)

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65: Tony Iommi (Black Sabbath)

Black Sabbath’s axeman is the opposite of a shredder: Bone-crunching riffs are his specialty, and while any heavy-metal kid could play the riffs of “Paranoid” or “Sweet Leaf,” it took a certain brilliance to dream them up. Even when he solos at length (on the first album’s “Warning” medley), it’s mainly a bunch of tasty riffs strung together.
Check out: “Paranoid”

64: Warren Haynes (Gov’t Mule)

It says a lot that Warren Haynes could step into institutions as venerable as the Allman Brothers Band and a couple of Grateful Dead spinoffs, and still be his own man. Haynes is the king of the jam-band world because he’s absorbed the full tradition and personalized it. His regular band Gov’t Mule can be spacey or bone-crunching depending on the tune. Check any version of “Soulshine,” the signature tune that he’s played with just about all of his bands, for his rootsy but expressive best.
Check out: “Soulshine”

63: Steve Hackett (Genesis)

Arguably the most consistently creative guitarist in progressive rock, the great Steve Hackett took his 1977 departure from Genesis as the cue to explore further, branching out to Brazilian music (on 1982’s Till We Have Faces), nylon-stringed classical guitar on a handful of instrumental albums, and even a rather wild blues album (1994’s Blues With a Feeling). But his specialty is still the grand, cinematic sound heard on such peaks as the title track to 1978’s Please Don’t Touch.
Check out: “Please Don’t Touch”

62: The Edge (U2)

Thanks to his canny use of delay and effects, The Edge had a signature sound from the very first U2 singles. The riffs on “I Will Follow” and “Gloria” are indelible as it gets, and his adventurous spirit has never flagged since developing his inventive style during the band’s 80s heyday.
Check out: “Gloria”

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61: Ritchie Blackmore (Deep Purple, Rainbow)

If there’s such a thing as punk metal, Deep Purple’s great guitarist probably invented it. What Ritchie Blackmore brought to the mix is pure aggression, first during his time with the Purps, then with Rainbow. Go back to Made In Japan , listen to the solos on “Space Truckin’” and “Lazy,” and tell us he didn’t wish he could murder everyone in the audience.
Check out: “Space Truckin’”

60: Leo Nocentelli (The Meters)

The Meters’ great guitarist Leo Nocentelli defined the New Orleans approach to funk: Keep it spare, with rhythm parts so slinky you can almost feel them. On a funk classic like “Cissy Strut,” he teases with that indelible riff, making an impression without stepping forward for a full solo. He solos more freely on later Meters tracks, but it’s still all about economy: On the extended “It Ain’t No Use” he takes to the wah-wah and makes every funky phrase count.
Check out: “Cissy Strut”

59: Adrian Belew (King Crimson)

A real study in contrasts, Adrian Belew keeps one foot in the avant-garde and another in Beatles-inspired pop, crossing those tendencies when you least expect it. As one of the most versatile and greatest guitarists, he’s both a prolific soloist and touring axe man for Zappa, Bowie and Talking Heads, to name a few. He’s also laid down some legendary session work on the likes of Paul Simon’s Graceland and Nine Inch Nails’ The Downward Spiral, and, lest we forget, he does great animal noises.
Check out: “Mr. Self Destruct”

58: John Fogerty (Creedence Clearwater Revival)

As the leader of Creedence Clearwater Revival, John Fogerty regularly packed guitar thrills into unfashionably short songs: The solo on “Proud Mary” was simple but perfect, and we’d be hard-pressed to name a more attention-grabbing guitar intro than the one on Creedence’s “Commotion.” When Fogerty allowed himself an extended solo, the results could be thrilling: The long, intense break on “Ramble Tamble” sounds like the Cramps before their time.
Check out: “Ramble Tamble”

57: Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth, solo)

With Sonic Youth, Thurston Moore changed the sound of the rock guitar, using an array of tones and tunings that were all his own. He also injected some free-jazz awareness into an energizing punk-inspired setting with his famous Jazzmaster guitar. Both with Sonic Youth and as a solo artist, he remains an alt.rock guitar hero.
Check out: “100%”

56: Hank Marvin (The Shadows)

The man who brought rock guitar to the UK, with Cliff Richard and, instrumentally, with the Shadows. You can thank Hank Marvin for any of your favorite English guitar heroes, since his sound is what they all grew up on.
Check out: “Apache”

55: Alex Lifeson (Rush)

Rush may be the only power trio where the lead guitarist could get overshadowed by the other two guys, especially when they reduced the guitar’s role in the 80s. But Alex Lifeson proved a perfectly heroic player whenever they turned him loose, unleashing more fireworks on “La Villa Strangiato” than most do in whole careers. When Rush changed directions, he provided subtler peaks like the textural solo in “Subdivisions.”
Check out: “Subdivisions.”

54: Mark Knopfler (Dire Straits, solo)

The world didn’t want to know about guitar heroics in the new-wave era, until the first two Dire Straits albums came along. On those records in particular, Mark Knopfler’s soloing is clean, economical, and effortlessly tasty. His solo work largely downplays lead guitar, but it’s still there between the lines.
Check out: “Sultans Of Swing”

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53: David Gilmour (Pink Floyd)

As the lead man in Pink Floyd, David Gilmour added cheap thrills to a band that usually disdained them. During live performances of The Wall, all of Roger Waters’ psychodramas led to the earthshaking solo on “Comfortably Numb.” Gilmour had a lighter touch as well; “Shine On You Crazy Diamond” may be the only prog epic to begin with five straight minutes of lyrical guitar shimmers.
Check out: “Shine On You Crazy Diamond”

52: James Burton (The Wrecking Crew)

The only guitarist to play with both Elvises (Presley and Costello), James Burton originated the swampy style that John Fogerty, of Creedence Clearwater Revival, plus many others picked up on. The Rock And Roll Hall Of Famer laid down his first iconic solo on Ricky Nelson’s “Hello Mary Lou, Goodbye Heart” and became the most in-demand player for virtually every top Californian record label from the 60s onwards, playing with The Beach Boys and The Everly Brothers, and joining the legendary Wrecking Crew.
Check out: “Hello Mary Lou, Goodbye Heart”

Hello Mary Lou, Goodbye Heart (Remastered)

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51: Bob Mould (Hüsker Dü)

The most inventive guitarist to come from the post-punk era, Mould brought psychedelia to the mosh pit when Hüsker Dü did their own version of The Byrds’ “Eight Miles High.” The careening energy he packs into every solo is still a sonic blast 40 years down the line.
Check out: “Broken Home, Broken Heart”

50: Rick Nielsen (Cheap Trick)

Rick Nielsen is probably the most underrated lead guitarist in the hard-rock world, since he uses guitar heroics on his famous five-neck guitar strictly to enhance the songs. And great songs – he also writes them – are what Cheap Trick is all about.
Check out: “The Ballad Of TV Violence”

49: Roger McGuinn and Clarence White (The Byrds)

You wouldn’t necessarily know it from their studio albums, but The Byrds’ Mark II line-up had one of the best guitar tag-teams in history: the founder who turned electric 12-string into an iconic sound, plus a world-champion flat picker who was just venturing into rock. Listen to any later live version of “Eight Miles High” and hear the sparks fly.
Check out: “Eight Miles High”

48: Kurt Cobain (Nirvana)

Kurt Cobain never embraced the role of guitar hero, which smacked of everything he disdained about big-time rock’n’roll. Which may be why he put one of his most hero-like, arena-ready solos into “Serve the Servants,” a song that disparaged the big time. Or why he played an Eastern-tinged solo that George Harrison or Beck would’ve loved, and then titled the song “Sappy.”
Check out: “Serve the Servants”

Serve The Servants

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47: Django Reinhardt

The great Belgian-French guitarist popularized gypsy jazz and recorded some of the most joyful solos on record. The 1961 compilation album Djangology is one of Django Reinhardt’s many collaborations with violinist Stéphane Grapelli, and is the very essence of swing. The Roma musician was one of the most influential jazz figures, and best guitarists, to emerge from Europe, and pioneered what would eventually be called “gypsy jazz”.
Check out: “Minor Swing”

46: Prince

Prince was such a prolific performer and songwriter that his gifts as one of the best guitarists of all time ran the risk of getting overlooked. But there’s a reason why “Purple Rain” and his appearance alongside Tom Petty on an all-star version of George Harrison’s “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” at the 2004 Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame induction ceremony, became his two most-shared performances: both feature epic guitar solos.
Check out: “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”

45: Ry Cooder

Ry Cooder is truly one of a kind, a great guitarist with an extensive grasp of musical history and a mile-wide eccentric streak (after all, he played with Captain Beefheart before going solo). He jammed with the Stones more than once (that’s his spooky slide on “Sister Morphine”) and rocked on John Hiatt’s beloved Bring the Family album. But Cooder’s greatest moment may be his early-70s take on the James Carr soul standard “Dark End of the Street,” as an emotive instrumental.
Check out: “Dark End of the Street”

44: Robert Fripp (King Crimson)

Prog legend Robert Fripp puts all the exploratory spirit of the greatest prog rock into every solo. Leaving King Crimson aside, we’d single out the violent outburst in Brian Eno’s “Baby’s On Fire” and the beautiful capper to Peter Gabriel’s “White Shadow.” With Crimson, he’s the only member to have played in all their line-ups, from their inception in the late 60s to the present day.
Check out: “Baby’s On Fire”

43: Frank Zappa

Anyone who had the privilege of seeing Frank Zappa live had to marvel at the solos he’d unleash in the middle of all the musical insanity. The surprise was how lyrical he could get; check Joe’s Garage for the beautiful “Watermelon In Easter Hay.” For a deeper dive, check out his Shut Up ’n Play Yer Guitar collection, loaded with enough guitar instrumentals and improvisations to take up three albums.
Check out: “Watermelon In Easter Hay”

42: Pat Metheny

Predominately a jazz guitarist, though perhaps the most flexible guitarist in any genre, Pat Metheny has managed to play acoustic pieces that border on New Age, along with album-length bursts of avant-noise, though he’s probably in top form when he’s strayed between those poles. An early adopter of synths in jazz, he’s also the only person to win a Grammy in ten different categories.
Check out: “Last Train Home”

41: Peter Green (Fleetwood Mac)

Throw in all the big names you want, but Peter Green just may be the most expressive of all the great British blues-rock guitarists. He’s renowned not as much for speed and flash (though he had those), but for the wealth of emotion he put into his solos; he could sound dirty and raunchy or downright haunted. A good example of both is the two-part “Oh Well” that features classic riffage in the first half and spooky atmospherics in the second.
Check out: “Oh Well”

40: Albert Collins

The “master of the Telecaster” was renowned for his stinging, “icy” tone. As one of the most influential and best guitarists on record, Albert Collins recorded well into the 90s, but his 60s sides offer some of the tastiest blues instrumentals on record.
Check out: “Frosty”

39: Big Jim Sullivan

No, it wasn’t Jimmy Page who did most of the guitar sessions in London during the 60s. It was Big Jim Sullivan, who wound up playing on an amazing array of 700 hit records, many of them timeless, before beginning a long stint in Tom Jones’ Vegas-era band. One of Sullivan’s trademark sounds was the acoustic 12-string, heard to great effect in Chris Farlowe’s “Out of Time” and the Seekers’ “I’ll Never Find Another You.” He also made a cult-classic album in 1968 as Lord Sitar, one of the first full albums to use the Indian instrument in a rock context.
Check out: “Blues For Norma”

38: Richard Thompson (Fairport Convention)

Earning our vote for one of the greatest guitarists still living, what Richard Thompson does by now transcends categories of folk or rock. There isn’t a guitarist working today with a more individual style, who can pack more emotional expression into a solo, or who can let it rip as thrillingly as he does on every live version of “Tear Stained Letter.”
Check out: “1952 Vincent Black Lightning”

37: Les Paul

Les Paul deserves immortality for his innovations in recording and multitracking, but his guitar-playing was no slouch either, particularly on the duo singles where he flew in and around the voice of his partner Mary Ford.
Check out: “How High The Moon”

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36: Elizabeth Cotton

The trailblazing folk and blues musician originated her distinctive style by accident. Elizabeth Cotton was left-handed but initially learned to play by turning her right-handed brother’s banjo upside-down. When she switched to guitar, she still had the instincts of a banjo player, and since the instrument was still upside-down, she fingerpicked the bass strings while using her thumb for the melodies. This style of “Cotton picking” is especially tough to master, which may be why no two versions of her signature tune, “Freight Train,” sound quite the same.
Check out: “Freight Train”

35: Robert Johnson

Though he never played electric guitar, Robert Johnson’s Delta blues embodies everything that a generation of blues-rock players was out to capture – from the swing in “Sweet Home Chicago” to the sheer aggression of his slide playing on “Crossroads Blues.” He may have struck a deal with the Devil, but we reaped the benefits.
Check out: “Cross Road Blues”

34: Carlos Santana

Carlos Santana is one of the most influential and greatest guitarists of the last 50 years, high points including his groundbreaking Woodstock set, his inimitable 70s streak and his “Smooth” revival. Santana has played every possible combination of rock, jazz, and Latin, and you can always tell it’s him from the first note. He never runs out of passion or ideas, having released his 25th! studio album, Africa Speaks, in June 2019.
Check out: “Oye Coma Va”

33: Buddy Guy

If BB King embodied the elegance of blues guitar, then Buddy Guy’s got the nastiness down. A blazing soloist even into his 80s, he’s pulled countless rock-trained ears over to the blues camp and inspired everyone from Jimi Hendrix to Eric Clapton. Few can bend a note quite like Guy, and he’s almost single-handedly keeping the blues alive.
Check out: “Stone Crazy”

32: Pete Townshend (The Who)

Pete Townshend sometimes insists that he’s a mere rhythm guitarist – but given the number of deathless solos in The Who catalog, you could’ve fooled us. Sure, his furious acoustic strumming is key to the Who’s sound, but so are the near-violent solos he unleashes at the peak moments, whether it’s the confessional “However Much I Booze” or the feedback extravaganza on the Live at Leeds “Young Man’s Blues.”
Check out: “However Much I Booze”

31: Neil Young

Everybody has a trademark style; Neil Young has two, and there’s no other rock guitarist who can vacillate convincingly between gentle and crude. There’s a reason a certain full-throttle Marshall sound is invariably called “that Neil and Crazy Horse sound”.
Check out: “Like A Hurricane”

30: Rory Gallagher

Of all the great blues-rock guitarists, Rory Gallagher had to be the most fiery soloist; give him a slide and he’d melt your mind with fluent riffs and dazzling speed. No wonder Gallagher was one of the few old-guard rockers that the punks still liked. And he was Jimi Hendrix’s favorite guitarist, too.
Check out: “Philby”

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29: Eddie Hazel (Parliament-Funkadelic)

As the charter guitarist of George Clinton’s P-Funk crew, Eddie Hazel played some of the most out-there solos ever ventured in a rock or funk context (check any live version of ‘Maggot Brain’ for evidence). But you could still get down to them.
Check out: “Maggot Brain”

28: Scotty Moore

It was Elvis’ original guitarist Scotty Moore who first introduced rockabilly to punk attitude: Few guitar solos ever said “Get outta here!” more clearly than his last one in “Hound Dog.” But his greatest solo, and one of the era’s best, has to be the one in the King’s version of “Shake, Rattle & Roll,” a solo so hot that Moore plays it again later in the song.
Check out: “Shake, Rattle & Roll”

27: Dick Dale

The story of Dick Dale’s surf rock success is an unlikely one in which a hungry young kid flashes back to the Lebanese music he grew up with, applies much volume and a ton of reverb, thinks about the thrill of catching a wave and invents southern California’s defining instrumental sound. Not bad for a transplant from Quincy, Massachusetts, who grew up to be one of the greatest guitarists in rock history.
Check out:“Miserlou”

26: George Benson

George Benson helped invent smooth jazz with “Breezin,’” but that was only after he’d been recording as a tougher and more inventive jazz guitarist for 15 years. Which is why Benson’s work remained tasty even at its smoothest, since he never lost his jazz roots. Check the Stevie Wonder-penned “We All Remember Wes,” from the height of his pop years. And he’s still trying new things, doing his first rock’n’roll album (Walking to New Orleans) 50 years into his career.
Check out: “We All Remember Wes”

25: Glen Campbell

Glen Campbell had hundreds of Wrecking Crew sessions under his belt before launching his solo career, and always played the guitar on his own records. Those bass string solos on “Galveston” and “Wichita Lineman” are models of economy, but if you really want to be impressed, check out his live version of “MacArthur Park,” proving his spot on a list of the greatest guitarists is more than well-earned.
Check out: “MacArthur Park”

24: Junior Marvin

The great Jamaican-born guitarist joined Bob Marley & the Wailers for the classic Exodus album and furthered the band’s power by playing rock-influenced lead guitar in a reggae context. The ripping solo in “Concrete Jungle” (from the live album Babylon By Bus) is a prime example. Crate-diggers should also check out the two albums of Hendrix-inspired power-trio rock that he recorded pre-Wailers, under his original name Junior Hanson.
Check out: “Concrete Jungle”

23: Keith Richards (The Rolling Stones)

Sure, there are flashier soloists (a couple of whom have themselves been in The Rolling Stones), but nothing says rock’n’roll like Keith Richards kicking off a rhythm riff. And nobody looks more rock’n’roll doing it. Writing some of the most memorable riffs in rock history more than earns him a place on this list of the best guitarists of all time.
Check out: “Jumpin’ Jack Flash”

The Rolling Stones - Jumpin’ Jack Flash (Official Lyric Video)

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22: Stevie Ray Vaughan

Stevie Ray Vaughn wedded the flash of arena rock to the essential soul of Texas blues at a time when both needed a fresh kick (the various live versions of “Texas Flood” are a crash course in blues eloquence). The world was robbed of one of the greatest guitarists of all time when he died at 35, in 1990.
Check out: “Texas Flood”

21: Albert Lee

As one of the greatest English guitarists, Albert Lee applied 70s rock distortion to his fluid fingerpicking, doing some groundbreaking work in his original band, Heads Hands And Feet. Later he put the distortion aside and became a first-class country-rock picker, anchoring the Everly Brothers’ reunion-era band.
Check out: “Country Boy”

20: Robert White (The Funk Brothers)

Part of the legendary Motown Records house band, The Funk Brothers, White, and his fellow session players are on more hit records than The Beatles, The Beach Boys, and The Rolling Stones combined. He’s also featured in the most heart-wrenching scene in the documentary Standing In The Shadows Of Motown, where he talks about sitting in a restaurant unrecognised while his indelible intro to The Temptations’ “My Girl” plays. They didn’t mention an even greater moment of his – that one-chord wonder that opens The Supremes’ “You Keep Me Hanging On.”
Check out: “You Keep Me Hangin’ On”

You Keep Me Hangin' On

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19: Link Wray

Famously the first rock’n’roller to get banned for an instrumental, when 50s-era parents feared that the switchblade guitar sounds on “Rumble” were enough to induce gang violence. The great part was, they were right. In some ways, Wray invented the power chord, creating the basis of modern rock guitar playing by all the best guitarists from then on out.
Check out: “Rumble”

18: Chet Atkins

Early in his career, country music’s greatest guitarist – “Mr. Guitar”, as he would come to be known – could perform red-hot licks with the best of them. But once Chet Atkins had been there and done that, he devised the more elegant, gentlemanly style that not only defined his sound, but defined the “Nashville Sound” from the mid-60s onwards.
Check out: “Windy And Warm”

17: Eddie Van Halen (Van Halen)

This guitar hero turned hard rock into high art, thanks to his innovative finger-tapping style and his famous Frankenstrat. Eddie Van Halen completely changed the sound and style of guitar rock in the 80s and gave us some of the most masterful riffs in rock history, from “Eruption” to “Unchained.”
Check out: “Eruption”

16: Martin Carthy

England’s premier folk traditionalist, Martin Carthy is famously the man whose version of “Scarborough Fair” was nicked by Paul Simon. Far beyond that, Carthy has an individual guitar style built around folk-dance rhythms, and he played some killer electric during his tenure in Steeleye Span.
Check out: “Byker Hill”

15: Steve Howe (Yes)

Steve Howe’s dexterity and imagination embody everything that’s great about prog rock, from the wah-wah outbursts on “Yours is No Disgrace’ to the country picking on “Clap” and the Spaciness of “Wurm.” And that’s just one side of his first Yes album.
Check out: “Yours Is No Disgrace”

14: Charlie Christian

As the man who brought the electric guitar forward as a solo instrument, jazz guitarist Charlie Christian arguably made most of this list of the best guitarists possible. For a key moment, check his 1939 recording of “Stardust” with Benny Goodman, where his solo gets freer and more forward-looking as it builds.
Check out: “Stardust”

13: Slash (Guns N’ Roses)

Among the flash and bombast of 80s hard rock, Slash sounded like a return to form, bringing back the spirit of old rock’n’roll to the Top 40 with a blues sensibility While best known for the kind of epic, stage-stealing solos like the one he unleashed on ‘November Rain’, the Guns N’ Roses guitarist helped to turn GNR from a Sunset Strip fixture to a stadium-rock act. He’s also responsible for some of the most iconic guitar riffs in rock, from “Sweet Child O’ Mine” to “Paradise City.”
Check out: “November Rain”

Guns N' Roses - November Rain

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12: Duane Allman (The Allman Brothers)

We got a tragically small amount of music from Skydog, but Duane Allman left a mark on slide-guitar artistry for decades to come – not least with his guest spot on Derek And The Dominos’ “Layla.” His secret weapon was the soulful touch that he’d honed through a few years of work as an Atlantic sessionman and later applied to his time with The Allman Brothers, with his brother Greg, before his tragic passing in 1971.
Check out: “Layla”

11: Brian May (Queen)

Proving that brainiacs really do belong in rock’n’roll, Brian May’s talent as an inventor/engineer gave Queen the wide array of guitar sounds that they needed to rule the arenas and properly frame Freddie Mercury as a lead singer. It also enabled them to proclaim “no synths” on their first six albums.
Check out: “Bohemian Rhapsody”

10: George Harrison

The Beatles’ masterful popcraft often overshadows their skills as musicians; case in point: George Harrison. Ever the quiet one, Harrison’s economic use of soloing – playing exactly what’s needed, when it’s needed – was an essential part of The Beatles’ sound. Even as the band was breaking apart on Abbey Road, Harrison was starting to shine as both a songwriter and guitarist, something we’d get to see more of on his solo work. His lead guitar lines came into focus on Abbey Road, allowing him to fully express himself through his instrument.
Check out: “Something”

The Beatles - Something

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9: Jeff Beck (The Yardbirds)

While Eric Clapton brought passion to The Yardbirds and Jimmy Page brought technical wizardry, Jeff Beck brought aggressive firepower. Guitar playing doesn’t get more brutal than “Rice Pudding,” the killer cut from his Beck-Ola album.
Check out: “Goodbye Pork Pie Hat”

8: Steve Cropper (Booker T And The MGs)

Possibly the greatest rhythm guitarist who ever lived, Cropper drover countless Stax singles (virtually all of them between 1963-73) with his impeccably funky timing. Not to mention his flair for the stinging solo, or his co-writing Otis Redding’s signature tune ”(Sittin’ On) The Dock Of The Bay”.
Check out: “Melting Pot”

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7: Jimmy Page (Led Zeppelin)

The key to Jimmy Page’s genius is really his years as a session player, coming up with endless ways to enhance a song. That’s what made him so resourceful with Led Zeppelin – he knew all about the possibilities of layering and colouring. As one of the few surviving artists from that era, this guitar virtuoso is a living legend.
Check out: “Heartbreaker”

6: Sister Rosetta Tharpe

No, the Devil didn’t have all the good songs, or even all the greatest guitarists. As an early gospel artist, Sister Rosetta Tharpe really did invent a lot of the distorted tones that blues and rock players would later adopt. Before that, however, she also recorded some of the most fluid acoustic leads on record. On the 1945 hit “Strange Things Happening Every Day,” she blurs the lines between country, jazz and gospel, all in the service of some sanctified testimony.
Check out: “Strange Things Happening Every Day”

5: Eric Clapton (Cream, Blind Faith, Derek And The Dominos)

Clapton is God: that was the belief during his Cream and Derek And The Dominos days, when Eric Clapton was one of the most expressive players around. But even after getting tasteful in the 70s, he always managed some thrilling outbursts. And that trademark “woman tone” remains a thing of beauty.
Check out: “Crossroads”

4: BB King

You might say that BB King was half of the greatest vocal duo in blues history. The other half was his guitar, Lucille, whose elegant, pleading tone said everything that the words couldn’t completely express.
Check out: “Sweet Little Angel”

3: Wes Montgomery

During his too-short career, this jazz great was rightly renowned for his octave technique (playing phrases on two strings an octave apart, giving a clear sweet tone), and his aggressive thumb strokes (something Jeff Beck and others emulated). More important was Wes Montgomery’s melodic imagination and his impeccable sense of swing, heard especially well on his late 60s Verve releases.
Check out: “No Blues”

No Blues (Live At The Half Note, 1965)

Click to load video

2: Chuck Berry

The blues had a baby, they called it rock’n’roll, and the guitar intro on Chuck Berry’s “Maybelline” was the moment of conception. Berry was a master of the short and tasty solo (though you can check out 60s albums like Concerto In B Goode if you want to hear his solos at length), and there’s been no worthy rock guitarist who hasn’t absorbed a little Chuck.
Check out: “Johnny B Goode”

Click to load video

1: Jimi Hendrix

Let’s face it, rock will never come up with a more visionary guitarist. Not only did Jimi Hendrix expand the sonic possibilities of what a guitar could do, but he also found uncharted places that a guitar could take you to. Decades on, every newly unearthed version of “Red House” is still a revelation.
Check out: “Voodoo Child (Slight Return)”

The Jimi Hendrix Experience - Voodoo Child (Slight Return) (Live In Maui, 1970)

Click to load video

Looking for more? Discover the 50 legendary bass players you need to know.



  1. Art

    January 2, 2015 at 3:55 am

    2 many 2 narrow down 2 50. Lightning Hopkins great Texas bluesman. Stevie Ray vaughns’ style very similar to his.

  2. NikkiG

    January 4, 2015 at 7:07 pm


    Enough Said!

    Watch And You Tell Me…

  3. NikkiG

    January 4, 2015 at 7:19 pm


    Enough Said!

    Watch And You Tell Me…

    • EdD

      August 21, 2015 at 1:29 pm

      Would not have put Prince in this list a couple of years ago but that was a mistake. He is an awesome guitar player. Just listen sometime.

    • Deryk

      August 21, 2015 at 1:52 pm

      100% agree. A greatest guitarist list without Prince in the top 10 is not a greatest guitarist list. This is a list of rock and rollers only.

      • Nick

        October 26, 2016 at 12:34 pm

        Funny. This link appeared on a FB Eddie Cochran page…and Brian Setzer is nowhere to be found. Lame.

        • J.D.

          October 18, 2017 at 2:57 am

          SETZER please. Many call him the best living guitarist, I would agree.

      • Bill Shannon

        October 18, 2017 at 1:32 pm

        Eric Clapton was once interviewed after a concert and asked what it was like to be the best guitar player in the world.His reply was …You should go and ask Prince……..

        • Ken Hink

          December 27, 2017 at 10:15 pm

          I have heard about that interview and I gotta admit Prince was something else, way under appreciated as a guitiar player.

        • Jammin' Jeff

          February 3, 2018 at 11:27 pm

          That is completely false – Eric has always said that Buddy Guy is the greatest guitarist he’s ever heard. That Prince statement was a meme conjoured up right after Prince’s death. Prince was a gifted musician, and a very good guitarist. There is no best, unless every guitarist played the same exact music, and not even then – there’s different phrasing, different tone, emotion, etc… if he moves you, or inspiresyou, then he’s done his job…

  4. don egan

    January 7, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    Not a fan of Clapton Page or Van Halen Django should be higher but Hendix should be 1

  5. drakie

    January 9, 2015 at 6:37 pm

    what about BILL NELSON ?

    • Max Sommers

      October 17, 2017 at 10:17 pm

      Good call.

  6. smith

    January 13, 2015 at 11:13 pm

    What about Alex Lifeson. And why isn’t Frank Zappa number one. Have you even listened to any of his solos (note: all of his live solos are completely improvised)

  7. Sallee

    January 14, 2015 at 12:12 pm

    I have seen many of the guitarists on this list, Clapton outplays the lot! i

    • GlynMo

      April 26, 2016 at 8:01 pm

      Clapton used to be good but, for the last xx years, he’s been regurgitating the same boring old licks time after time.

      • GlynMo

        April 26, 2016 at 8:02 pm

        Peter Green and Gary Moore are far better.

      • Chris

        July 23, 2016 at 3:12 pm

        EC also has a neurological condition now, so it’s unlikely we’ll ever see him play again, nor as well. Thats probably why he hasn’t put out much new material lately. But, if you look at his career, 50+ years, and the number of other artists on that list who cite him as an influence, I’d say his place on the list is well deserved.

      • lis

        October 24, 2016 at 5:21 pm

        You are boring!

  8. Feliciano Swerts

    January 18, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    50 better than John Lee Hooker? Congratulations!

  9. Shane

    February 18, 2015 at 9:59 am

    What a load of shit.
    The Edge?????????????
    He’s not a guitarists arsehole. Wouldn’t be able to play anything without his pedals, and yet he’s ranked higher than Slash, Joe Perry, Frampton, Gary Moore etc.
    Whoever came up with this list must be on some bloody good drugs.

  10. Shane

    February 18, 2015 at 10:17 am

    Clapton the greatest ever?
    He was an ok blues player, but nothing more. Hendrix wasn’t great either, just relied on his party tricks to impress people.
    Neither would make my top 50.

  11. HanniLP

    February 26, 2015 at 12:56 pm

    I forgot Ace Frehley from Kiss or Phil Campbel from Motorhead that are Guitarrists !!!!!!!!

  12. Blue Jack

    March 6, 2015 at 1:32 am

    Ever hear Roy Buchanan ???? absolutely Danny Gatton….

    • Pistacho

      October 17, 2017 at 5:46 am

      Absolutely, Roy Buchanan was a virtuoso, much better than 45 of the one who made the list, and Mike Bloomfield

  13. Susan Hudak Scherer

    March 22, 2015 at 12:59 pm


    • Joe Thompson

      July 13, 2015 at 1:30 am

      That would be Joni Mitchell and yes she should be on the list. Most of the people on this list given her music couldn’t play it.

  14. Steve

    March 31, 2015 at 11:45 am

    Where is Danny Gatton, Steve Morse….the list is too short… God Danny was something.

    • swampfox

      October 26, 2015 at 2:00 pm

      just ask Les Paul who would eat everybody’s lunch ??? That be ” The Humbler ” Mr. Danny Gatton.

  15. Ace Duncan

    April 16, 2015 at 2:49 pm

    Joe Walsh! Of course!

  16. Ace Duncan

    April 16, 2015 at 2:51 pm

    Lindsay Buckingham, tragically underrated!

  17. Eric

    May 10, 2015 at 3:19 pm

    Alvin Lee?

  18. Anita

    May 10, 2015 at 3:34 pm

    What about Terry Kath, Chicago!

  19. Anita

    May 10, 2015 at 3:37 pm

    What about Terry Kath, Chicago?????

  20. Tom

    May 10, 2015 at 3:40 pm

    Where is Alvin Lee of 10 yrs. after…..??????

  21. Chuck Rios

    May 10, 2015 at 3:46 pm

    Wow….grand funk railroad can’t get any kind of recognition at any time, can they? Mark Farner should rank among rocks best guitarists EVER, period, end of story….dumbasses

  22. Gompie

    May 10, 2015 at 3:48 pm

    No Jan Akkerman, no Eelco Gelling…?

  23. Dominic P

    May 10, 2015 at 4:37 pm

    Alan Holdsworth blows them all away. He didn’t even make the list!! What a joke!

  24. Neil

    May 10, 2015 at 4:43 pm

    eh stand fast Robert Cray

  25. Jerry Fladeland

    May 10, 2015 at 4:49 pm

    No Robin Trower & Alvin Lee?!?

  26. Terry Carlson

    May 10, 2015 at 5:02 pm

    … they trolled all the teen magazines and came up with the “Top Pop 50.” I’m surprised that Bobby Sherman or Davy Jones aren’t listed there — I mean, I think they actually held a guitar in their hands at least once.

    Waste of time.

  27. James Young

    May 10, 2015 at 5:19 pm

    Keith is exactly where he is supposed to be on the list. This is about rock and roll. This is not about technical ability and perfection which are the last things I want when listening to rock and roll. With this music you want dirtiness and true raw emotion of which Keith provides an infinite amount. After all, he is a guitarist in ‘the greatest rock and roll band in the world.’

    • Michael R. Wilder

      June 21, 2015 at 9:48 pm

      This is NOT about Rock n Roll. It says list of 50 greatest guitarists. Not of any one style or genre. Your comment is purely your opinion, to which you are absolutely entitled, though I would suggest, as I’m sure would many others, that you are incorrect in your assertion that the Stones are the best rock band in the world, and that Keith Richards should be above SRV in any way other than perhaps longevity, is more than arguable.

      • Pat Eck

        June 28, 2015 at 6:47 pm

        Why not Neal Schon? The guy has been an amazing player for 45 years

    • tight

      March 30, 2018 at 5:00 am

      Are you talking about Trey Anisasio? in that case you’re right

  28. Michael Patrick Clark

    May 10, 2015 at 5:22 pm

    Every list of this nature will be subjective; that’s a given, but this list is so bad I can’t even get annoyed about it.

  29. Mitch Weiner

    May 10, 2015 at 5:43 pm

    SRV and Brian May are far too low on the list and where is Prince ?

  30. eric

    May 10, 2015 at 5:52 pm

    leo kottke say no more and garcia down at 36 , no way

    • Eddiek

      May 10, 2015 at 10:55 pm

      I was wondering if anyone would mention Kotke. These lists are always going to be hugely controversial. The guitarists mentioned here and their rankings are culled from other lists. The value is in the discussion that emanates from the posting of the list. When I read Rolling Stone’s top 100, deep in the discussion the name of Sister Rosetta Tharpe popped up. After researching her work, my only thought was she probably taught Chuck Berry a thing or to. My personal favorite is Jerry Garcia, who was not only technically adept, but imaginative and creative in a live setting like no one else.

  31. doug

    May 10, 2015 at 5:54 pm

    The fact that George Kooymans is not on the list invalidates the list. Perhaps it should be called the fifty “most famous” guitarists.

  32. garth palmer

    May 10, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    there is JEFF BECK then the rest – NEIL YOUNG also cranks it up above some of those listed

  33. Lewis Ashman

    May 10, 2015 at 6:18 pm

    Hendrix should be Number 1 because what else are you going to do with him? He was as proficient as most of the others that are on the list or have been mentioned, but like it or not he had a musical creativity and imagination that was uniquely his own. To take three from the top ten, Allman and Page and Clapton were all recognizably playing the same instrument under similar influences. Hendrix had another agenda all his own. “Band Of Gypsys” was a huge leap into something better than “Are You Experienced?” and I’m sure he could have gone on into more and different music if the drugs hadn’t taken effect in a horrible way. In interviews he complained about the limitations of the guitar for what he wanted to do and he often sounded more like he was fighting with the guitar to get somewhere only he could imagine, rather than just playing it. I suspect that if he’d lived into improved synthesizers he would have dropped playing the guitar and made records of just himself playing synthesizers. And in that case, we would remember him as that great guitarist who got all weird and made thirty years of very strange records. For better or worse, he was different from all the others.

  34. Skipper

    May 10, 2015 at 6:50 pm

    Listen to there guitar play and you will know why. G3 have made a live album with Joe Satriani, Steve Vai and John petrucci. This album should convince you who is the best guitar players in the world. Rank 1, rank 1 and rank 1, if they could.

  35. Manie

    May 10, 2015 at 7:59 pm

    Totally agree about Gary Moore.

    • Allan

      August 24, 2015 at 8:44 pm

      Manie I agree. Any list without Gary Moore is a joke. No Gary Moore but they put Keith Richards in at 5. Pleeeeeeease! Richards should not even be in the top 50. If there is any doubt about Gary Moore do yourself a favour and watch the Blue Ray version of “Blues for Jimi” and if the compilers of this list are not sure maybe they should speak to Mitch Mitchell and Billy Cox about how good Gary Moore was.

  36. JNDC

    May 10, 2015 at 8:01 pm

    Tommy Tedesco…

  37. Lars

    May 10, 2015 at 8:07 pm

    And where is Terry Kath and Joe Pass?

  38. Hey Joe

    May 10, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    Stacy Sutherland of the 13th floor elevators should be on this list. He blazed a trail for psychedelic and punk bands after.

  39. Jeffrey Fenko

    May 10, 2015 at 9:29 pm

    I don’t know what science you can apply to this list, or any other subjective rating, but, as usual, this is deeply flawed. First, and most important to me, is that anyone other than Hendrix could be listed ahead of Clapton, and I can make a credible case for an inversion even there. Considering the fact that only at his very peak years could Page be in the conversation with Hendrix, Clapton, and Beck, and the fact that he has done next to nothing for thirty years, it’s hard to see him breaking the top five. Add to that, he is no longer capable of delivering a virtuoso performance, and has never been able to deliver a satisfying solo live on Stairway To Heaven. Beck definitely belongs in the top five, and much as I love Keith Richards, both Stevie Ray and Duane Allman should be ahead of him. The exclusion on all the lists I’ve ever read on all time guitarists of Alvin Lee is baffling. I can’t tell you how many names out of the fifty listed that I would have put him ahead of, but it’s numerous. This is all opinion, and I’m sure that this list is a collaborative endeavor, but I do have to say that I’ve lived long enough to have seen many of these performers, including Hendrix and Allman, so I have a little grounding here. Nice try, but no prize from me.

    • Jasper

      July 12, 2015 at 9:29 pm

      You expressed precisely the sentiments that I hold regarding the top slots of this list. Thank you.

      P.S. Clapton is God

  40. Greg Main

    May 10, 2015 at 10:36 pm

    Have you never seen or heard Buck Owens play a guitar? Hendrix, like the Rolling Stones, has always been overrated. He copied his style from predecessors.

  41. pascual

    May 10, 2015 at 11:02 pm

    ¡ Terry Kath! , 25or 6 to 4

  42. aham

    May 10, 2015 at 11:10 pm

    This is a joke definitely, Keith Richards ahead of SRV and BB King??????? Give me a break…

  43. Conal O'Donoghue

    May 11, 2015 at 12:44 am

    Jimi Page was a decent guitar player, certainly not worthy of a top 50 place. never mind putting him third.

  44. BorkoZeBorko

    May 11, 2015 at 2:39 am

    Who routinely changed guitar tuning set-ups and produced hit after hit before anyone knew what was happening? Who pulled a string off a telecaster to make it a 5 string. Who has quietly held together both lead and rythym positions without taking credit. Keith isnt number 5, he is number 1 in creativity, style and play. What? Cause he doesn’t shred and was a junkie?

  45. Ricardo Guimarães

    May 11, 2015 at 2:51 am

    Allan Holdsworth, George Benson, Guthrie Govan, Pat Metheny???

  46. Ken Ricardo

    May 11, 2015 at 4:34 am

    There are some names that don’t even belong on the list especially Keith Richards, you left out two important names 1. Lindsay Buckingham awesome guitarist, 2. Alex Lifeson he should be in the top 10 this man has had one hell of a career and he don’t need a rhythm guitar to fill in the holes, it says a lot to be in a three man band and have such a full sound and have 40 years of Great music !!

  47. Vladimir

    May 11, 2015 at 6:04 am


  48. Larry Masterson

    May 11, 2015 at 6:05 am

    The Edge at 31? Maybe 131! And Clapton is #1. The deepest catalog of music and he continues to record and release new material. Hendrix died too young, didn’t accomplish enough to be #1.

  49. JJ

    May 11, 2015 at 6:17 am

    No Leslie West? No Robin Trower? Ritchie Blackmore is # 29? OMFG did you effing seriously?

  50. Clive

    May 11, 2015 at 7:05 am

    Very strange – no Robin Trower? That’s just bizarre. Slash? Bloody hell, that’s stupid. What about Ian Moss? People obviously have different likes and dislikes but come on!!!

  51. dave gilbert

    May 11, 2015 at 9:05 am

    what the hell is george harrison doing in the top50

  52. clive kelly

    May 11, 2015 at 10:16 am

    I would put Bonnie Raitt and Nancy Wilson ahead of some of these

  53. Bill B

    May 11, 2015 at 10:55 am

    Yes, Andres Segovia HAS to be on the list and near the top. I saw him in 1970 at age 80. Seven encores at the Masonic Auditorium in SF. I cried like a baby when he played. But I will always go with Jimi Hendrix #1. Saw him 3 times in SF – mind blowing to say the least. Guitar playing was never the same after him. And Robert Johnson needs to be somewhere on this list. Another revolutionary player. I wouldn’t put Clapton third, but he’s in the top 20. I think he peaked with the Bluesbreakers. I’d rank Mike Bloomfield a lot higher. Lots of other favorites were left off too, like Joe Pass. Oh, well. Such is the nature of these lists.

  54. Axe Hack

    May 11, 2015 at 11:53 am

    Hahaha, the thing about list like these is they always spark debate, the guys that missed are all great too, everyone anyone has mentioned are all super players. Even the editor mentions the guys who missed out. Thurston Moore, the Edge bit rubbish and Django Reinhardt played acoustic guitar in a French gypsy fashion, if you go down that path you’ve missed plenty of classical geniuses. Ahh totality of the musical list. Clapton made a record called ‘There’s one in every crowd’ the original title was ,’The greatest guitarist in the world…there’s one in every crowd’.

  55. Kevin Crawford

    May 11, 2015 at 1:39 pm

    Indeed. Mayall sported great guitarists, but John himself isn’t one of them…

  56. Kevin Crawford

    May 11, 2015 at 1:55 pm

    The list is bogus both for omissions AND placements, but in the end, I got just two words for ya: Joe Satrianni.

  57. stu

    May 11, 2015 at 3:00 pm

    Exactly… hendrix was an overrated, there are people on this list that piss over hendrix.

    • gerry mifsud

      June 29, 2015 at 9:58 am

      you asshole Jimmy was far beyond

      • Robbie Hernandez

        March 1, 2018 at 9:35 am

        I agree. Jimi #1. Always and forever!

    • Greg

      April 27, 2016 at 5:41 am

      Like Beck and Clapton. Richards should not be in the top 30

      • Andrew

        February 28, 2018 at 7:26 pm

        Beck is the best I’ve ever seen. Granted, I never saw Hendrix.

    • Simon

      October 18, 2016 at 11:21 am

      Do you think Hendrix would have stopped developing given what he had achieved to that point, I doubt it. Everyone who saw him said he was Eons ahead of all other players in the area of electric rock ,funk & soul. Hendrix highly admired and stated so publicly, the 3 Kings, Clapton, Beck, Clarence White, Phil Keaggy, Buddy Guy, Ernie Isley, Miles Davis, Rory Gallagher and Stephen Stills among others. He was no hermit, but studied other great players of his time with great care and fascination. He was like Bruce Lee, absorbing what was useful and rejecting what was not to him, at the time.

      • Scotty b

        February 26, 2018 at 11:21 am

        Where the fuck is Dweezil Zappa?…..and His dad should be in the top 5. Far more versatile and unique than most in this list

    • Theacguy

      November 28, 2017 at 7:00 am

      You obviously don’t have a damn clue…Jimi Hendrix could walk over anyone on this list.

  58. faltan algunos

    May 11, 2015 at 5:03 pm

    stev vai Yngwie Malmsteen joe satriani

  59. Albert Gartner

    May 11, 2015 at 6:04 pm

    Wo ist Steve Lukather? Ihr Ahnungslosen!

  60. scott

    May 11, 2015 at 6:34 pm

    where is alex lifeson of rush one of my top ten

  61. BobB

    May 11, 2015 at 8:50 pm

    Where is Neal SCHON of Journey!!!!! Page as 2??? Page isn’t better than Clapton or Duane for that matter.

    • scot

      May 27, 2015 at 6:00 am

      your stupid

    • Jim Combs

      December 25, 2015 at 12:38 am

      I have to agree. Neil Schon is still incredible to this day.

  62. juan martos

    May 11, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    rory gallagher 44
    keith richardr 5 ? quien a hecho la lista ?

  63. Ricardo Guimarães

    May 11, 2015 at 9:21 pm

    Minha lista:

    1. Allan Holdsworth
    2. John MacLaughlin
    3. George Benson
    4. Jimi Hendrix
    5. Al DiMeola
    6. Jimmy Page
    7. Paco de Lucia
    8. Wes Montgomery
    9. Frank Zappa
    10. Steve Vai
    11. Joe Satriani
    12. Jeff Beck
    13. Yngwie Malmsteen
    14. Pat Metheny
    15. Jan Akkerman
    16. Guthrie Govan
    17. Ritchie Blackmore
    18. Steve Howe
    19. Alex Lifeson
    20. John Petrucci
    21. Martin Barre
    22. Steve Rothery
    23. Robert Fripp
    24. Andrew Latimer
    25. Gary Green
    26. Eddie Van Halen
    27. Pete Townshend
    28. Steve Ray Vaugham
    29. Mick Ronson
    30. Jeff Schroeder
    31. Larry Carlton
    32. Dimebag Darrell
    33. Steve Hackett
    34. John Scofield
    35. Frank Gambale
    36. John Abercrombie
    37. Stanley Jordan
    38. Greg Howe
    39. Scotty Anderson
    40. Wayne Krantz
    41. Kurt Rosenwinkel
    42. Joe Bonamassa
    43. Adrian Belew
    44. Kiko Ferreira
    45. Joe Perry
    46. Johnny Ramone
    47. Adrian Smith
    48. Zakk Wylde
    49. Pepeu Gomes
    50. Noca Tourino

    • Isaac Mizrahi

      June 16, 2015 at 3:10 am

      i like your list muuuuuuch better…
      but how is it i haven’t seen the name danny gatton yet? i know he’s been dead a while, but… another great guitar player was terry kath from chicago. those first few albums COOKED. esPECIALly the first…i would hope you’re familiar with the al dimeola, stanley clarke and jean luc ponty work, ‘rites of strings’. as good as the paco delucia/mclaughlin et al collaborations… nice list.

    • Mike

      February 5, 2018 at 6:04 am

      Rory Gallagher .

  64. Rick Cody

    May 11, 2015 at 9:30 pm

    The most amazing thing about this list is that somewhere, somehow and on some distant galaxy far far away, someone on your staff actually expects to be taken seriously. Do you even know what a guitar looks like?

  65. rick

    May 12, 2015 at 12:21 pm

    This is not a serious list nobody mention Brent Mason he can play anay style check it out on you tube .

  66. Park

    May 18, 2015 at 6:11 pm

    Swifty, your are right on brother, Mick Box should be at at least in the top 10

  67. sth

    May 27, 2015 at 6:06 am

    bluzking is stupid. JIMMY PAGE SHOULD TOP ALL LISTS.

  68. The Slovak Kid

    June 10, 2015 at 4:38 am

    Where’s Buckethead?

  69. Paul K

    June 15, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    this is a joke…no Randy Rhoads??? No Frank Marino??? you got to be kidding me.

  70. ken bell

    June 15, 2015 at 10:43 pm

    Your list is not even close to right , Hendrix shouldn’t be in the top 20 , volume is not talent , a chimp can make noise with a guitar , Clapton , Page , Vaughn , that’s the real axe men ……….

  71. phil

    June 15, 2015 at 11:02 pm

    No Martin Barre? Seriously?

  72. Glenn

    June 15, 2015 at 11:44 pm

    OK, let’s all agree that it should have been a TOP 200 Guitarists and we all have our own opinion. BUT those mentioned by everyone are all awesome names!

  73. Coz McWillie

    June 15, 2015 at 11:55 pm

    Steve Millar Walter Becker nowhere to be seen, Jerry Garcia below Brian May. Your list is bogus.

  74. mike

    June 16, 2015 at 2:25 am

    No Tommy Bolin, or Paul Kossoff. Popularity among the masses, does not equate to guitar greatness,….if you ask many of the still living greats, many would put these two in the mix….

  75. Mike B

    June 16, 2015 at 5:08 am

    The problem is not enough spaces for @ least 200 of the best !! Personally, I really ENJOY……..”JOE WALSH”, there are better/worse, so it’s a matter of TASTE ! PEACE

  76. Bruce Remington

    June 16, 2015 at 6:28 am

    The bullshit is that Robin Trower is not in the top ten (top 5 actually-maybe top 2…)….have a different order, but at least alot of the greats are in there – better than many of these lists that SOMEBODY comes up with…….Mick Box???

  77. Al

    June 16, 2015 at 4:52 pm

    Keith Richards better then Duane Allman and SRV? Yea, right.

  78. Galad Elflandsson

    June 16, 2015 at 10:18 pm

    Jerry at #36 could have played rings around everyone but Jimi…but you totaly spaced Alvin Lee & THAT is unforgivable….just because nobody wanted him to play anything but fast…

  79. James Young

    June 18, 2015 at 2:41 am

    Well guess who played bass on ‘Flash?” Yup, Keith did…look it up!

  80. Brad Jackson

    June 18, 2015 at 6:29 am

    Tommy Bolin? Robin Trower? Ronnie Montrose?

  81. Joe Dreibholz

    June 18, 2015 at 3:35 pm

    Totally agree. Rory Gallagher should be in the top Ten. It also misses Jethro Tull’s Martin Barre.

    • T. R. Smith

      June 22, 2015 at 8:05 am

      Or Mick Abrahams.. Tony Mcphee of the Groundhogs, he is credited with helping to inspire both punk rock AND metal/hard rock. There is a live version of “Split Part 2” where he does very incredible work and creates totally unique sounds and acoustically his tribute to John Lee Hooker (“Mr. Hooker, Sir John”), who he played with is remarkable.
      .. And Elmore James? To this day I have never heard anyone carry a slide up the neck of a guitar with the tone and power of Elmore. If Duane Allman were alive today I think he would agree.

  82. Robbie

    June 19, 2015 at 12:17 am

    A guitar genius nobody mentioned is Mike Oldfield ! British maybe ? And he CAN do it live ! The Edge live is always missing keys and notes . Not even top 200 for me . Hendrix overrated .

  83. Fred Strauss

    June 19, 2015 at 8:34 pm

    Don’t trust a list who put Keith Richards above Jeff Beck!!

  84. Tim Pepper

    June 19, 2015 at 8:52 pm

    Quite frankly what a crock! Where’s Steve Hackett. Also Mike Holmes of IQ could show some of these a thing or two.

  85. george gilkenson

    June 19, 2015 at 10:59 pm

    Nils Lofgren, Alvin Lee of Ten Years After and Billy Gibson should be on this list.. Somewhere!

  86. paolo

    June 20, 2015 at 9:42 am

    and Rik Emmett, Zakky Wilde, Randy Rhoads and Tony Iovine?

  87. steve

    June 20, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    you put chet atkins at 22…..obviousley a halfwit

  88. Rob

    June 20, 2015 at 7:15 pm

    Roy Clark definitely should be on the list! And I don’t even like country!

    • Adam

      August 24, 2015 at 11:59 am

      I was hoping someone would mention Roy. I knew he was good, but I didn’t realize how good until couple of years just how good. Look up the episode of ” The Odd Couple” that he was on. Fantastic!

  89. Michael

    June 21, 2015 at 8:05 am

    So predictable Hendrix, Page & Clapton top the list. Are you kidding. So many mediocre players on that list like Johhny Ramone & Jack White. Top of the list is easily Dave Gilmour. And where are Nils Lofgren & Elliot Easton

  90. Mark

    June 21, 2015 at 7:03 pm

    Plain and Simple!
    You people truly missed the mark by placing George Harrison “well” out to the Top 10! You need to go back and listen to his music again!!

  91. arnfinn bratseth

    June 21, 2015 at 9:22 pm

    This is many of them,but,Sonny Landreth,is on of them,many is forgotten,Albert Lee,jimmy thackery,hank marvin,eddie meduza,øystein sunde,roy clark,marty stuart,jerry reed,waylon jennings,hank c burnette,bill kirchen,and the guitaist for tom petty,j.j.cale,++.

  92. arnfinn bratseth

    June 21, 2015 at 9:27 pm

    tommy emmanuell,i forget too.

  93. Michael R. Wilder

    June 21, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    I realize this list is very subjective, as everyone would draw it up differently if asked to do so, and I appreciate that, but I am quite dubious to the notion that any type of science was used in the making of this list. To say that it was structured like his simply because certain tracks were no available on Spotify, or any other site individually, puts this list as suspect at a minimum in my mind. Now, here is a bit of subjectiveness on my part, though I would venture to say that I will be supported in my comment by a great many others, and that is that Keith Richards could carry Stevie Ray’s jock! When was the last time in the past 25 years that you even saw Keith Richards ugly mug on a music magazine, much less heard anybody say something like “man that Keith Richards is (add superlative here.)”? Is there a Keith Richards statue ANYWHERE in the world like Stevie Ray has? I have been playing guitar literally all my life. I started when I was about 4, and am now 45, and NEVER in all that time have I ever heard anyone say that Keith Richards was inspirational to them, but couldn’t tell you how many that say SRV has. The others in the top 5 are arguable, but it would be totally subjective. I don’t think having SRV above Keith Richards is. I would be very interested to see this so called science that was applied in making this list. I think you guys were drinking and or smoking weed when you made this up, and or did it just to get a rise out of people.

  94. Michael R. Wilder

    June 21, 2015 at 9:41 pm

    Dude, are you blind man? They have Keith Richards at #5! One step above SRV, which is absolute madness, if not outright stupidity! BTW, sorry, I this was not intended to be an attack against you, just pointing out your mistake a little forcefully…lol!

  95. Joe Sousa

    June 21, 2015 at 11:52 pm

    The fact that Walter Trout is not even mentioned makes this laughable/

    • Karen Remington

      December 24, 2015 at 1:33 pm

      Thank you. Leo Kotke, John McLaughlin, John Mayhall…too many left out.

  96. PooyCat

    June 22, 2015 at 12:07 am

    Me thinks this list is broken
    Really Slash at 46? WFH Man
    Gilmore at 21!?!?!?!?!
    Way wrong this list

  97. keith wallace

    June 22, 2015 at 3:02 am

    you need to discard the 3 or the 4 in 34 dude

  98. keith Wallace

    June 22, 2015 at 3:07 am

    Somewhere @ the top I would gather?

  99. Woodenhead

    June 22, 2015 at 3:36 am

    Theres so many left out and who would put Jerry Garcia and Johnny Ramone as hot guitarists? They wrote some great songs but really come on people. this is a list of something not sure what.

  100. T. R. Smith

    June 22, 2015 at 7:33 am

    I’m with you on that one..

  101. Kostas Kritikos (Sparta, Greece)

    July 6, 2015 at 4:16 pm

    Roy Buchanan ?

  102. Jeff Oliver

    July 6, 2015 at 11:34 pm

    Ok, I knew Jeff Beck would make it and he did. I’m glad Dickie Betts made it but what about Duane Allman?
    Kim Simmonds should be there and so should Al Di Meola.

  103. Alan Webber

    July 6, 2015 at 11:42 pm

    Chuck Berry! – who are you jiving? The fact that Rory Gallagher, David Gilmour, and Carlos Santana are not top 10 makes this list suspect…at best. Clapton and Vaughn are the only guitarists in the top 10 that even belong there. And then not to even mention Alvin Lee in 50 guitarists??? Come on dudes, it is like you just threw that list up there to see how much dissension you could create.

  104. Phil

    July 7, 2015 at 1:52 am

    Where are Mick Box,Robin Trower,John Weinzerl,and Rory Gallagher should be higher up on the list.

  105. Mike

    July 7, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    No no no Blackmore should be n° 1 😉 Only ust for his good view of life 🙂

  106. george gilkenson

    July 12, 2015 at 6:25 pm

    No Roy Buchanan ??? Alvin Lee?? Nils Lofgren???? Anyone..? Anyone?

  107. AJ

    July 12, 2015 at 6:39 pm

    It is hard to rank anyone on this list. It is especially hard to rank anyone who was also a good singer and composer. It is a matter of your taste.
    The best guitar player I have even seen perform live was Jeff Beck back it in the days when Rod Stewart was his lead singer. The warm up group was the predecessor to ZZ Top. Billy Gibbons can hold his own with the best of them. I don’t know why they even list 1 to 100. It riles everyone up.

  108. John

    July 12, 2015 at 8:00 pm

    Neil Young, Leslie West, Rick Derringer, Alvin Lee, Kim Simmons deserve to be on the list.

    • Randy

      July 13, 2015 at 12:51 am

      I agree with Alvin Lee and Kim Simmons, what about Ronnie Montrose and Frank Marino

  109. Greg Andrew

    July 12, 2015 at 11:46 pm

    I feel Mick Taylor should surely be higher than what he is.

    • Hey... I like Keith Richards

      December 24, 2015 at 3:29 am

      Yes sir

  110. Patrick

    July 14, 2015 at 9:59 am

    Tommy Emmanuel
    Steve Stevens
    Jerry Reed

  111. Roy Joy Abraham

    July 21, 2015 at 10:29 am

    Alvin Lee, Gary Moore and Peter Frampton should’ve been on the list …you should probably come up with a 100 greatest guitarists and everyone should be happy

  112. Doug

    July 21, 2015 at 7:58 pm

    where the hell is Alvin Lee this list is a complete JOKE!!LMFAO

    • red

      May 9, 2016 at 10:57 pm

      Any list lacking Alvin is trash.

      • john senker

        December 29, 2017 at 2:36 am

        agreed and Johnny Winter #47???? give me a break

      • Ed

        March 1, 2018 at 8:28 am

        Alvin Lee’s ‘No Limit’ The best playing his best.

    • Phil

      October 16, 2017 at 11:02 pm

      My thought exactly…Alvin Lee has to be in the top 50 somewhere!

  113. Iggie

    July 27, 2015 at 4:58 pm

    Gary Moore should be on the list.
    Johnny Winter should be higher.
    Rory Gallagher should be higher.

    • Bob

      August 21, 2015 at 1:16 pm

      Gallagher should be at least 3

  114. tomaszz

    August 20, 2015 at 1:38 pm

    Bull shit list.
    Where is Al Di Meola, Steve Hove, Paco De Lucia to mention just few not listed here???

  115. Python

    August 20, 2015 at 11:42 pm

    The only reason these lists are ever compiled I would suggest is to create controversy/discussion. I’ve seen many of these Greatest Guitarist lists over the years with some truly laughable additions such as Kurt Cobain for example and as in this list Bo Diddley. I’m not sure exactly what motivated the compiler to add rhythm guitarists not remotely known for their ‘prowess’ amongst others known for their lead work even though a good rhythm guitar is worth their weight in gold but it sure does bring out the animal in people.
    Personally were I given the job of making a list I would clarify why people are included. I’d make it the Best Lead Guitar or Best Bassist or Rhythm. It’s not right to mix them up because they do a specific job within a band.
    Giving Hendrix such regular peak position is in my humble opinion probably not fair to him either as he was era specific and therefore was hailed because of his prowess and individuality but was he the best even then? Probably not. Even he admitted there were some he thought better than him. It’s all media hype after all. Since Jimi there have been many many superb guitarists and to pick one above another is after all personal opinion. If I were to add just one guitarist left out of this list I’d like to submit Jow Bonamassa, or Keith Urban or Phil Keaggy or, or, or……

    • Ian

      November 4, 2019 at 10:06 am

      I agree with you and would like to add one thing that is generally forgotten in this entire commentary (not limiting it to your entry) – and that is that the title actually states ‘Best Guitarists in Music: 50 Legendary musicians you need to know’. There is no mention about the music being rock music specific, punk specific, heavy metal etc. So what has happened to jazz, blues and of course that age-old phenomenon – classical. I see a lot of mention about British musicians such as Gilmour, Richard, Clapton, Blackmore, Townshend, Knopfler, The Edge, Page and Marvin and also across the ocean to US which supplied Allman, Campbell, Hendrix, Cobain, Didley, King and Benson to name a few. I do not see any mention (except in the Comments) about Walsh, Kottke or the Oceania group which includes Emmanuel, Young and possibly the best guitarist ever – John Williams. Sadly, Williams is a classical guitarist but his ability on the guitar wipes the floor of every one of these 50 ‘musicians’. Incidently, I am a rock music fan and a 60s-80s music lover.

  116. Trev

    August 21, 2015 at 8:50 am

    I know a couple of guitarists just starting out. If they practise hard they might make the list one day. Their names are Alex Lifeson and John Petrucci.

  117. MSNV

    August 21, 2015 at 10:52 am

    Les Paul number 3 ! where the f**** are Alvin Lee and Nick Valensi from The Strokes grandpa ?

  118. Rainey Dawn

    August 21, 2015 at 12:14 pm

    I agree with all these guitarist! But where in the hell is Robby Krieger? He MUST be apart of the top guitarist!

  119. Mike Vee

    August 21, 2015 at 12:33 pm

    I wonder how they were judged – what criteria was used, just someone’s ‘opinion’? Worthless.

  120. Nan

    August 21, 2015 at 12:40 pm

    46. Slash xdxdxdxdxd

  121. Mark Lynn

    August 21, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    I agree,,,,, who ever made this list has a lot of nerve claiming that this list is the top 50, I disagree on the placement as well as the guitarist..

    • Robert Allen Bailey

      October 28, 2015 at 7:15 pm

      Who ever made this list, first of all, has no taste!!! And is probably not a guitarist!!! At least not one very knowledgeable about music theory!!! (Chord structure,chord relativity,substitutions,extensions,alterations,scales, or knowledge of the fingerboard!!! etc.) “Enough to be a judge in the first place!!!”

      • Jim BaneDog

        October 25, 2016 at 12:47 pm

        Alternatively, you could actually read the post and you will see in the second paragraph it says it is a poll of polls…. it’s called words. That you failed to read.

    • Jeroen Sluis

      March 29, 2018 at 11:11 am

      I agree. Forgotten are Jan Akkerman and The Hellecasters, Stochelo Rosenberg, Chet Atkins and many more!

  122. Mark Lynn

    August 21, 2015 at 1:00 pm

    I have to say I disagree with the choices and placement of this so claimed TOP 50…..
    There are so many more deserving guitarist as well as the placement on the order……….

  123. rrb710

    August 21, 2015 at 1:02 pm

    Yeah, April Lawton of Zephyr & Ramatam fame might have made it, had she lived long enough. The guy in Stone The Crows ( forget his name) that got zapped onstage – he was pretty good too. No Arthur Lee? Or Steve Hillage (#1, imo)?

  124. Bob

    August 21, 2015 at 1:14 pm

    Rory Gallagher at 44 in the list, its a joke

  125. Mr. T

    August 21, 2015 at 1:20 pm

    OK, you only included rock and blues guitarists. I get that. But you didn’t call this a rock list, you called it “50 Greatest Guitarists” so you missed the mark completely. Missing is: Phil Keaggy (he’s recorded rock and blues, but he’s a Christian so he’s not good enough?), then any number of jazz guitarists. Al Di Meola, John McLaughlin, Pat Metheny – could play circles around anyone on this list. And go ahead and laugh when I say “George Benson.” He can cut loose. Check out his duet with B.B. King on King’s KBFH release.

  126. Annice

    August 21, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    Where are the women?

    • John

      November 12, 2015 at 8:57 pm

      Kitchen or bedroom I guess?

  127. Anthony

    August 21, 2015 at 1:24 pm

    The list is a joke!
    Jimmy Page was always over-rated, Clapton hasn’t done anything decent for years!
    This sort of thing is always contentious and will never please anybody! I’d have had Bill Harkleroad (Zoot Horn Rollo) on my list, and what about Innes Sibun as one of the new guitarists? Wayne Perkins deserves a mention. It would be so easy to do an alternative list of 50 guitar players.
    It’s best to have a quiet chuckle at the list and take it with a pinch of salt!

  128. Paul deBigfella

    August 21, 2015 at 1:30 pm

    What ! no Tommy Bolin or Randy California or Janne Schaffer or Steve Stevens, you need to enlarge your musical collection

  129. Christopher

    August 21, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    wheres Bonamassa?

    • Mongol Fred

      October 27, 2015 at 1:41 pm

      You mean Joe Bonamassa, the Justin Beiber of guitar playing?

  130. Sparky P

    August 21, 2015 at 1:34 pm

    Focus’ JAN AKKERMAN once voted world’s best guitarist?

  131. Andreas Hess

    August 21, 2015 at 2:11 pm

    I agree to a lot of the great musicians listed.
    Since this is always a very personal thing to rank certain musicians, I would just like to add two, that should belong here, at least from my perspective:
    Martin Barre from Jethro Tull and
    Steve Lukather from Toto

  132. AT GEE

    August 21, 2015 at 2:37 pm

    How about Alvin Lee?

    • aswaldo

      August 21, 2015 at 7:30 pm


  133. Claude Rioux

    August 21, 2015 at 2:59 pm

    In my humble opinion and, for the record, according to MY tastes (those being not really subject to discussions unless you refresh my memories, not so difficult a task lol), Hendrix is where he should be, all-time best. Behind him, a small select group including Neil Young (so underated as a guitarist), Pat Metheny (outofworldish), Jeff Beck (his guitar’s part of his body, him playing it so smooth and clean), Frank the genius Zappa, Stevie Ray you know who, Joe Bonamassa, Steve Hackett (unforgettable), Frank Marino (remember him?) and yes I believe Keith Richards ( a genuine rock’n’roller). Many more are as goog or better but once again my list is a subjective one according to my tastes. Thanks for your time. Oh! I forgot. I luv the way Buddy Guy plays the guitare. Quite unusual! Ask Keith!

  134. Richard Gearon

    August 21, 2015 at 3:03 pm

    Willie, for sure, should be on the list, and NO ONE has mentioned Albert Lee, who could play masterfully in ANY genre. LES PAUL at #28? T-Bone at #19? T-Bone was a major influence on every other guitarist who followed him. EVERY OTHER GUITARIST. This list was brought to us from former inmates at the Rolling Stone (magazine) Insane Asylum. If left completely to their own devices, they would have declared Bruce Springsteen, #1.

  135. Gary Wright

    August 21, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    Jack White made the list but Warren Haynes is left off? Pure bullshit.

    • Claude Rioux

      August 21, 2015 at 4:19 pm

      Thanks for Warren Haynes (remember him playing Cortez the Killer – wrong right title? – with Dave Mathews.

  136. Framus jack

    August 21, 2015 at 3:36 pm

    Loved the Beatles but George Harrison a better guitarist than for example Billy Gibbons, Gary Rossington, Paul Kossoff, I think not, if this list was done following extensive research I wonder what sources they used, the intro from “Freebird” was one of the most innovative pieces of guitar playing ever and features in many polls as being so, but Rossington does not get in the top 50, “All Right Now” the most played trap on rock radio ever due to Kossoff’s classic rock riff. Could go on all day but rubbish like this “survey” ain’t worth the bother. Jan Akkerman should be here as well, “Sylvia” was brilliant and as mentioned earlier he was voted world’s best guitarist and was such a major player that he was one of very few guitarists at that time to actually have a guitar named after him. Don’t know why I even follow the link to this site, it is always full of c**p.

  137. kev

    August 21, 2015 at 3:42 pm


  138. C.A. Cooper

    August 21, 2015 at 4:58 pm

    No Roy ClarK? That alone makes this list a joke ! ! !

  139. Tendayi Kagoro

    August 21, 2015 at 5:02 pm

    No Robin Growers mus be kidding me

  140. Jimmy

    August 21, 2015 at 5:07 pm

    One name that Never gets on any list, & wrongfully so. Is Yngwie Malmsteen.

  141. Fizzy

    August 21, 2015 at 6:01 pm

    That list is Subjective at best, It’s seems to be more of a popularity contest than listing of musical prowess.

    Typically disappointing.

  142. Mark

    August 21, 2015 at 6:40 pm


  143. Charlotte Wright

    August 21, 2015 at 6:41 pm

    Oh how we rue about our favorite guitarists. Clarence White, Mother Maybelle Carter and Sister Rpsetta Tharpe!!!

  144. Bill

    August 21, 2015 at 6:56 pm

    As always Todd Rundgren left out. can play any genre, amazingly!!

  145. aswaldo

    August 21, 2015 at 7:28 pm

    Zakk Wylde and Chris DeGarmo pretty much kill this list boys.

  146. Roy

    August 21, 2015 at 7:57 pm

    I only have one comment.
    WHY IS RIK EMMIT of Triumph not on this list!

  147. Larry

    August 21, 2015 at 7:58 pm

    Who ever put this list together has obviously not listened to Carlo Santana very much, he belongs at #2 – right between Jimi and Eric

  148. Dave Arden

    August 21, 2015 at 8:29 pm

    A true farce if ever there was one. No Neil Young, Alex Lifeson, Joe Walsh etc. but they include Chuck Berry! My my, what on earth was this based on? If anyone ever saw the guitar showdown in Spain hosted by Brian May you would wonder how he made the list at all, and putting Jimmy Page at #2 really does take the biscuit.

  149. Dan

    August 21, 2015 at 8:58 pm

    Thank you for including the often overlooked Mick Taylor and Peter Green.

  150. Brad Wilson

    August 21, 2015 at 11:50 pm

    the fact that tim reynolds didn’t make your list just shows me that you don’t know anything other than what your media conglomerates force feed you

  151. Keith Docherty

    August 22, 2015 at 12:28 am

    Most of this this list appears to be about guitarists that did something once, in a spell.
    A great guitarist is someone that changed music, the way it was played and others followed.
    Mostly the great blues legends.
    Hendrix was a legend who took sounds and styles from Clapton and Clapton took styles and sounds from Hendrix.

    Hendrix played great guitar but Clapton was a great guitar player.
    Both changed the way we play and the sound of guitar today.
    Even the great BB king said Clapton took blues to another level it hadn’t been before.

    Keith is a fantastic player with an original sound but doesn’t have the natural ability of Hendrix and Clapton.
    And he shouldn’t be in the top5.
    Page was great and had his sound but was very one sided. Never did anything different.

    What should make the top 5 is the guys that all other great guitarists followed and wanted to play with.
    This had to start with Clapton and Hendrix at joint number one for pure natural soul and ability, they reinvented and changed the guitar sound we all love today.

    And where is Jeff Healey, Gary Moore, Bonamassa?
    And an underrated Nuno?

    • Patrick G

      March 1, 2018 at 9:14 am

      Totally agree. And watch n listen to Clapton live in San Diego it’s rock band class 101 such great musicians and the professor EC at the top of his game.

  152. jeremy montague

    August 22, 2015 at 12:42 am

    Martin Barre doesn’t make the list? Sad.

  153. Jorge

    August 22, 2015 at 12:48 am

    Jimi Hendrix….THE BEST!!!!!

  154. Ricky Leiderman

    August 22, 2015 at 1:50 am

    Why is it Lindsey Buckingham never makes any list?

    • John

      November 12, 2015 at 8:55 pm

      He’s a pretentious ass?

  155. Will Smith

    August 22, 2015 at 3:23 am

    Two guys I think should get their due: Nils Lofgren and Danny Gatton.

  156. Gary Pfalzbot

    August 22, 2015 at 3:42 am

    No John Petrucci, Dream Theater? I guess you have to either be dead or bought and paid for to be on this list. In 2012, Petrucci was ranked the 17th greatest guitarist of all time by a Guitar World magazine readers poll. There are a number of others whose omission from the list I question as well.

  157. JPUD

    August 22, 2015 at 5:12 am

    Another dumb list. What about Joe Bonamassa. I’d put him before Van Halen. First 3 guys make sense but after that it goes down hill.

  158. Theo Roberts

    August 22, 2015 at 5:12 am

    George Harrison #32 and Keith Richards #5? Ridiculous. And how can Santana not be in the top 10? This is just a random list of people who have held a guitar at one point in their lives.

  159. Hans-Hermann Hirschelmann

    August 22, 2015 at 8:00 am

    Where the hell is Tommy Emmanual?

  160. Frankly

    August 22, 2015 at 8:38 am

    Come on where is Hank Marvin. He was the most influential guitarist in the early sixties and hundreds of young lads ( some of them listed in your top 100 ) picked up a guitar to try and play like Hank. George Harrison should be higher on the last and possibly in the top 10 for his amazing contribution to The Beatles. Rory Gallagher would definitely be in anybody’s 20 best and Hendrix is not No 1 as his time was too short.

    • Peter Friberg

      October 27, 2015 at 1:04 pm

      Most likely somewhere above the no. 1 spot, where he should be.

  161. ethan

    August 22, 2015 at 11:42 am

    there’s so much wrong with this list, it is barely worth commenting on. but *someone* needs to put you straight. mick taylor, peter green and george harrison are way too deep on the list (george should be in the top 5, the other 2 in at least the top 10). and players like the edge, thurtson moore and jack white aren’t in the top 10,000…maybe you like them, sure…but honestly…they are merely average players. jeff beck at #10??? there’s a record called “blow by blow”, it came out in ’75…long before you guys were born, i am sure…but you ought to check it out. keith richards is way, way too high on the list. and no duane eddy??? any panel who makes these kinds of assessment needs to be at least 50 years old…and should be guitar players themselves…so they have some idea what they are talking about.

  162. Ricky macphail

    August 22, 2015 at 11:46 am

    No1 has to be galluping cliff gallup

  163. Russ

    August 22, 2015 at 12:03 pm

    Who figured the list? What about Steve Lukathier (ToTo) or way back Roy Clark

  164. Dirk Baxter

    August 22, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    Gary Moore not in the top 50….Hahahahaha

  165. Skinny

    August 22, 2015 at 2:41 pm

    They must have put this list together playing darts. Keith Richards & Eddie Van Halen ahead of SRV and no sign of Robben Ford or Trower, not to mention Gilmour at 21?

  166. PAYBACK

    August 22, 2015 at 6:00 pm

    Alvin Lee not on the list! so sad!

  167. James Whelan

    August 22, 2015 at 9:59 pm

    Rory Gallagher @ 44…… Farce!!!! The man was God.. Even Jimi Hendrix said he was the greatest.. Bit like saying Rooney is better than Messi!! Some load of horseshite if you ask me!!!!!!!! Ye certainly dont know yer music!!!

  168. James Whelan

    August 22, 2015 at 10:01 pm

    Rory 44..Fuckin joke

  169. DB

    August 23, 2015 at 10:26 am

    no tommy bolin? Shame!

  170. biff

    August 24, 2015 at 11:12 am

    Let’s see, this list is all back assward and forgot to mention some guys that make most of these clowns look like weenies … Larry Coryell, Al DiMeola, Paco DeLucia, Steve Hackett, Joe Pass, Herb Ellis, Pat Martino, Segovia, Julian Bream, Carlos Montoya, Yngvey Malsteem, basically every Jazz guitarist and progressive rock who ever lived with a few exceptions, every Flamenco guitarist, every Classical guitarist, etc, but included a whole bunch of wankers who made crap contribution to rock music, in other words, the shallow end of the gene pool … and even in the rock world, it fails to mention guys like Dave Mustaine and most metal heads that make most rock and blues players look like pussies … only some idiot working for the Rolling Stone could come up with this list.

  171. Bob Shekerko

    August 24, 2015 at 11:40 am

    You’re right, the top ten is all out of whack! Hendrix should not be #1. Unless I missed it, Les Paul and Brian May aren’t on the list. I can think of tons of people that should be on the list before a few of these! Everybody knows Segovia is the best there ever was!

    • Don Nichols

      August 29, 2015 at 2:11 pm

      Thank you Bob……Segovia IS without a doubt the absolute best on acoustics. I once heard Eric Clapton remark that Mark Knopfler was by far the best electric guitarist ever. I agree. The list is one mans opinion……just not mine!

      • Ralph

        June 1, 2016 at 3:07 am

        J J Cale

    • Arthur

      October 29, 2015 at 6:54 pm

      You missed it. They’re both on the list. Rendering everything else you said completely irrelevant.

  172. Darren England

    August 24, 2015 at 11:57 am

    It doesn’t surprise me that only mainstream guitarists are on this list. Rex Carroll of Whitecross I’d for sure have on this list. I’d also have to include up & coming guitarist Zac Tiessen, check out his original material on YouTube.

  173. Vic

    August 24, 2015 at 5:00 pm

    B.B. King on top of Robert Fripp? Hahahahaha !!! Nice one !!!

    • Benroo

      November 30, 2017 at 6:16 pm

      Have you heard Andy Summer and Robert Fripp played together? And to all of you people out there you forgot the most original, the legendary Les Paul !!! 21 gun salute for you Les …

  174. Allan

    August 24, 2015 at 10:02 pm

    Any list without Gary Moore featuring in it is a joke. Had the pleasure of watching “Blues for Jimi’ by Gary Moore on the weekend which featured Mitch Mitchell and Billy Cox. Outstanding guitarist who died too soon. To even dream that Keith Richards is a better guitarist than Gary Moore is the joke of the millenium. A list with Keith Richards at #5, Pleeeeeeeease! Get real.

  175. Lino T.

    August 24, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    Not Todd Rundgren in the first 50??? This list is trash…

  176. DJ RAPHO

    August 26, 2015 at 3:43 am

    Es un crimen poner a Ritchie Blackmore en el puesto 26.

  177. Dave

    August 27, 2015 at 9:46 pm

    Keith Richards beat out Stevie Ray Vaughn? Richards shouldn’t even be in the top 50! What was his style? Sloppy guitar?

  178. harold hatch

    August 29, 2015 at 12:21 pm

    that list sucks all wrong heres your real and very best guitarist roy clark duane eddy chet atkins the ventures I could go on and on way to many so how do u pick the best u don’t they are all very good

  179. Gibsonman

    August 29, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    How can you have a list with out Les Paul?

    • my mistake

      August 29, 2015 at 1:04 pm

      Sorry ev1 now i see him lol to early in the morning

  180. Andrew

    August 29, 2015 at 6:33 pm

    How about Gary Moore from Thin Lizzy, Joe Bonamassa, Larry Carlton, Jon Herrington, Dean Parks, Skunk Baxter? Too many people left off this list. Hendrix is not number one, that’s a definite. He was good, but I can name a dozen others that were better!

    • Woody87

      December 24, 2015 at 12:12 am

      Better? Ha, you tosser. Learn something about guitar playing and the history and then come back, all his contemporaries were blown away by his virtuosity- he sparked the careers of many great guitarists and was one of the greatest showmen ever to grace this planet.

      • Bill

        December 24, 2015 at 7:34 pm

        Know need to for that just cos you don’t agree with someone’s point of view I think you are the tosser merry christmas

      • Cooky Mann

        October 17, 2016 at 7:40 pm

        This list is NOT about “showmen”.
        It’s about guitarists.
        Hendrix couldn’t hold a candle to thousands of teenage guitarists of today.
        Allan Holdsworth SMOKES EVERYONE on this list and you and the other assholes who made this list never heard of him.
        Try using the Internet before you spew your bullshit.

      • Jeff

        April 29, 2018 at 1:22 am

        Yea, mostly out of tune!! Jeff Beck hung him out to dry

      • Steve

        May 2, 2019 at 5:31 am

        Roy Buchanan was better.

    • Bob

      December 24, 2015 at 10:25 am

      I’m glad you mentioned Joe Bonamassa. For some reason he never seems to get the credit he deserves. That man can play anything!

      • Dilt

        October 18, 2017 at 5:13 am

        Joe Bonamassa, the best guitar player you’ve never heard of.

      • paul rushworth

        October 18, 2017 at 9:50 am

        ive see him live brilliant

      • Erling R.

        October 21, 2017 at 4:23 pm

        AMEN! The best guitarist! You should know him! He is amazing.

      • John H

        February 28, 2018 at 4:51 pm

        He can mate – spot on -anything, with anyone, and works his balls off, not release same old hashed up stuff from the past like Mr Page and Mr May – anything new to add to music you two? Also Mark Knopfler and of course the great Alex Lifeson.

      • Fred E Spice

        October 1, 2018 at 12:32 am



        September 7, 2019 at 6:58 pm

        Andy James, Gus G. Better than all of them.!!!

      • Dave Parry

        October 16, 2019 at 7:19 pm

        Yes agree about Bonamassa but my absolute favourite and never on anyone’s list was Johnny Winter

      • John Gabriel

        October 18, 2019 at 12:36 am

        Curt Kirkwood

    • James

      March 3, 2016 at 4:52 pm

      Agreed, Andrew. I’ve met Joe, Larry, Jon, & Lee Ritenour and speaking as a guitar player for 50 years, the versatility that the players you list have as well as their articulation, it is a sham that they’re not on the list. But let’s face it, this is all subjective.

    • James

      March 3, 2016 at 4:57 pm

      I’d also have to put in this list, Steve “Luke” Lukather. How is he NOT on this list as well?

    • Steve

      March 15, 2016 at 11:58 am

      I’d like to see your list of people better than Hendrix, before I bite your head off. 🙂

      • Jon

        April 13, 2016 at 11:23 am

        Nos. 2, 3 and 16, but not in that order.

      • Elroy

        June 1, 2016 at 12:59 pm

        Narciso Yepes

        But then again, probably not many here who even know who that is …

      • Lou

        October 17, 2017 at 10:33 pm

        Hendrix said Terry Kath was the best he had ever seen…enough said.

      • John Garnham

        November 28, 2017 at 7:31 am

        Listen to Roy Buchsnan (not on list) play ‘ Hey Joe ‘ then compare to No.1 J Hendrix .
        No comparison ..

    • Tony Besgrove

      March 16, 2016 at 7:50 am

      No you can’t! Hendrix died 41 years ago and in those 41 years there has NEVER been anyone who got close to the inventiveness, excitement and stage presence of that man. Just watch his full Woodstock performance. 😎

      • stoney bruce

        November 16, 2016 at 1:13 am

        I agree wholeheartedly Tony. Though, I would put Duane Allman a close second. I hate how Jimmy Page is always in the top two on every list. He was Mister Slop and a big time blues ripoff artist. Nothing original about his playing. If you hear Hendrix, you know who it is. Same with Allman. But if you listen to Page, away from Zep, you wouldn’t be able to tell who that was. Tone, technique, and style is everything. Hendrix and Allman had ton’s of it. Sorry if you’re a big fan of his, but this has always bugged me.

      • Likah

        October 18, 2017 at 9:50 am

        then you surely didn’t saw much concert and you got stuck with this one, Hendrix is a joke ^^

      • pmr

        February 7, 2018 at 5:33 pm

        I agree about Page , really a great studio guy but innovator, no. Most of the greats sound unique and identifiable, but not Page .Like not technically great but unique Townsend.

    • paul rushworth

      October 18, 2017 at 9:47 am

      I agree ive seen gary moore he,s the best ive ever seen,and what about hank marvin, or even bert weeden,most of these would not be around if not for these,or even Robert Johnson who started most of the blus

      • Eamonn

        December 1, 2017 at 5:10 am

        Robert Johnson is #11.

    • Bill Rollinson

      February 28, 2018 at 4:24 pm

      I’ll second that, I’m also surprised Richie Blackmore isn’t on it or Robbie Robertson from the Band!

      • Emkay

        April 2, 2019 at 5:50 pm

        Can you read ?
        Blackmore on list…smfh

  181. Robert Grant

    August 29, 2015 at 10:09 pm

    what?? no Danny Gatton? Malmsteen,Vai,Satriani,Bonamassa,Marvin et al…Chuck Berry practically invented rock & roll…Keith Richards ? no offence..but really? no you guys are way off on some warped National Inquirer version of a popularity contest..I digress..sorry 4 the vent..!

  182. Gayle

    August 30, 2015 at 6:27 pm

    John (Knoll) Christ

  183. Bruce

    September 4, 2015 at 12:59 am

    Yep….you said it.

    Where is:

    Al DiMeola
    Pat Metheny
    Larry Coryell

  184. James

    September 11, 2015 at 12:30 am

    Danny Gatton and Roy Buchanan should be on the list.

    • Michael

      March 21, 2016 at 11:03 pm

      Amen !!!!!!!

  185. Sandra

    September 29, 2015 at 7:26 pm

    Knopfler and SRV should be ahead of over-rated Clapton, imo. And no Fleetwood Mac musician made any of your lists – crazy! McVie on bass, Fleetwood on drums and no Lindsey Buckingham on this list. Too many others missing from this list and too many who should not be included to mention. At least someone was smart enough to include Robert Johnson here who probably, even if indirectly, influenced all of the guitarists.

  186. Ade

    October 3, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    Larry Carlton, Allan Holdsworth?

  187. abbyroadme

    October 25, 2015 at 7:25 pm

    I am stunned that Peter Frampton is not on there. Since I saw him in concert and talk about impressive.

  188. Mark Sampson

    October 25, 2015 at 10:29 pm

    Nine better players than Jeff Beck? What are you smoking in your pipe. And no offense, but Johnny Ramone is ahead of Dickey Betts? What a joke!

  189. Rick C

    October 26, 2015 at 12:12 am

    James Burton #42?!?
    uDiscover should not have scumped themselves.

    • Michael

      March 21, 2016 at 11:02 pm

      I agree. James needs to be much higher and Danny Gatton should be way up there as well.

  190. J Stevens

    October 26, 2015 at 12:57 am

    Keith Richards # 5. Johnny Winter # 47. what a joke.

    • Ken

      April 27, 2018 at 8:18 am

      You are right. Johnny Winter is much better than 47. Also, Billy Gibbons, Alvin Lee, Alan Wilson, Harvey Mandel and Robby Krieger are better than many on this list.

  191. John

    October 26, 2015 at 11:54 am

    John Mayall plays the piano!

  192. Jim W

    October 26, 2015 at 2:25 pm

    No Steven Stills? He’s better than at least half those guys. Arguably the best acoustic player in rock.

  193. John Michlik

    October 26, 2015 at 2:29 pm

    Well….I just read “Forbes’ Greatest Lists Of All Time” and… guess what? Your list isn’t even on the list. So there 🙂

  194. John B.

    October 26, 2015 at 3:43 pm

    This list is missing two of this worlds best guitarist, John Mayer, and Brad Paisley.

  195. Colleen

    October 26, 2015 at 4:05 pm

    One of the world’s best….Dave Meniketti from Y&T.

  196. Marko

    October 26, 2015 at 7:59 pm

    Keef & Clapton ridiculously high, Les Paul and Steve Cropper ridiculously low, gaping holes in the shape of Hubert Sunlin, Scotty Moore, if Robert Johnson is there so should be Reverend Gary Davis and Blind Willie Johnson, at least no boring shredders like Vai and Malmstreen (tho Satriani should have made it at least into the lower forty), and no Gary Moore who would have been great id some kond soul explained to him it’s not necessary to solo after EACH verse. Duane Eddy, Angus Young, Hank Marvin and many others aside, I would have included Brian Setzer and the Turner brothers from Wishbone Ash

  197. woodstock135

    October 26, 2015 at 10:01 pm

    You could never put a list together that would please anyone. I will always feel that Hendrix at #1 and Page at #2 is a given for me, after that my list changes drastically. I would rearrange, eliminate and substitute throughout this list and no one would agree. It is a pointless exercise in futility.

  198. woodstock135

    October 26, 2015 at 10:03 pm

    You could never put a list together that would please anyone. I will always feel that Hendrix at #1 and Page at #2 is a given for me, after that my list changes drastically. I would rearrange, eliminate and substitute throughout this list and no one would agree. It is a pointless exercise in futility.

  199. Matt Davis

    October 26, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Joe Walsh. He has such a natural relation with the guitar and plays with such variety and feeling. Lindsey Buckingham is often overlooked but a brilliant player. No list is complete they are fun to make and read.

  200. Alan

    October 27, 2015 at 2:31 am

    I agree with about 2/3 of the list. But John Kay should have been in there somewhere, imo.

  201. Gus Castaneda

    October 27, 2015 at 5:17 am

    ………one day the best guitarists reunited to establish once and for all who was Guitarist Number One: …….at the meeting, Eric Clapton said: “I am number one because I initiated the movement that created this debate in the first place”, ….then Jimmy Page said, …”no I am number one because I expanded the guitar prescence into every music style there is”; ……no…!!!, ….said Keith Richards, ….”I’m number one because I represent the free spirit of rock and roll and my guitar was the marching voice”. ……After more than a hundred candidates expressed their position, Jimi Hendrix took the floor: ….”sorry guys but I am number one because God himself told me I was the best”, ……at that point Jeff Beck stood up and said, ….”you are a liar Jimi, ….I did not tell you anything”.

  202. ali

    October 27, 2015 at 7:41 am

    ooolum batının çok bilmişi alvin lee’yi nerene soktun.
    jeff beck’in 10.lukta ne işi var?

    a) alvin lee?
    b) jeff beck 10 ha. yuhhh…

  203. It's a joke ?

    October 27, 2015 at 9:20 am

    A guitarists list that forgets Neil Young !!!
    Really ?
    Are you joking ?

  204. Larry

    October 27, 2015 at 11:10 am

    Two of my favorites that did not make your list Dwayne Eddy and Richard Kiser.

  205. glenn webster

    October 27, 2015 at 11:25 am

    where is DUANE EDDY

  206. glenn webster

    October 27, 2015 at 11:30 am

    what a list where is THE GUITAR MAN DUANE EDDY

  207. Kent

    October 27, 2015 at 12:28 pm

    Billy Gibbons
    Dick Dale
    Patrick Simmons
    Ted Nugent
    Hard to compare different styles to actually rank these guys as one to whatever but they would definitely be on my list!

  208. Peter Friberg

    October 27, 2015 at 12:46 pm

    Well spoken!

  209. Naishcombe

    October 27, 2015 at 1:06 pm

    Agree – Hank Marvin significant omission

  210. Mongol Fred

    October 27, 2015 at 1:32 pm

    I note you place BB King at Number 8.
    I have no problem with that.
    Yet the guitarist that BB King himself said “raised the hairs on the back of his neck” you place at Number 38. Where is the logic in that?
    Peter Green is better than Number 38.
    When Clapton left John Mayall’s Blues Breakers to go to Cream.
    John Mayall told the others, “Don’t worry, I’ve got somebody better”
    You have Eric Clapton at Number 3. I have no problem with that.
    Peter Green is better than that.

  211. Scott Lutz

    October 27, 2015 at 1:49 pm

    The entire problem here is that this is a list. It’s a subjective click-baity incomplete summary of the history of guitar players. Music is an art and should not be subjected to ranking.

    Nobody would take a list of great painters and say that Picasso is better than Van Gogh and Renoir should be up two positions over Matisse and Dali. And don’t forget Monet, Bateman, Seurat and Da Vinci.

    There should just be a box that says in this box are great guitarists, some you will be familiar with and some you may not. In that box attached to the artist should be their influences, who they influenced, some of their best works and a link to their page.

    They should not be rated and fought over, they should be shared, discovered and cherished.

  212. Brendan

    October 27, 2015 at 2:45 pm

    Seriously people this list is bogus! IMO Eddie Van Halen is clearly the best guitarist of ALL times! Not even open for discussion. Has anyone ever heard Eruption? Has anyone in history ever had a guitar solo that even came close to that? NO! This dude builds guitars not just plays them! The others are all amazing players in their own right and no one can take that away from them but when it comes to mastering and i mean mastering the guitar no one has done it the way Eddie has….

  213. Herb Wahnon

    October 27, 2015 at 6:22 pm

    I think Keith Urban & Brad Paisly need to be there somewhere.

  214. Jack Neal

    October 27, 2015 at 8:06 pm

    Where’s Brian Setzer on the list. He’s an amazing guitarist and sometimes he’s not on the list. Chuck berry is way to high on the list. Love Chuck Berry but he’s too high. James Burdon is low but he’s great too.

  215. buck

    October 27, 2015 at 10:10 pm

    James Burton and Steve Cropper should be moved way up. Hendrix should be moved way down. You also missed Roy Buchanan and Joe Bonamassa, not to mention Les Paul and Chet Adkins.


  216. right

    October 27, 2015 at 10:58 pm

    no one but no one could out play Chet Adkins

  217. Wes

    October 28, 2015 at 12:02 am

    I felt the same about Robin Trower, unique and one of the best.

  218. nick

    October 28, 2015 at 3:55 am

    What about Randy Bachmann?

    • Brian Mac

      November 10, 2015 at 9:29 pm

      what about him? he sucks, that’s what about him.

  219. Ray Plasse (@tddfn)

    November 3, 2015 at 7:40 pm

    No Todd Rundgren makes this list in my top 50 worthless list!

  220. jake

    November 6, 2015 at 4:13 am

    John Jorgenson, Will Ray, and Jerry Donahue The Hellecasters! Frank Marino better than Hendrix! Pat Travers, Craig Chaquico!

  221. Tom

    November 10, 2015 at 5:14 pm

    That’s a who’s cool list.
    Hardly a best list.

  222. Rene

    November 10, 2015 at 5:29 pm

    Brian May, only 27th ?

    This is ridiculous !

  223. Brian Mac

    November 10, 2015 at 9:27 pm

    See, these lists are ALWAYS subjective to whomever is making out the list. Now, I may not agree with the order, or I may have added one or two different guitarists, BUT IT’S NOT MY LIST PEOPLE!!!!!!!! So, get over yourselves…if you don’t like the list, MAKE OUT YOUR OWN LIST AND QUIT WHINING, you bunch of crybaby a**holes.

  224. colin

    November 11, 2015 at 8:38 pm

    hi you lot just to remind you all that it is just 1 persons opinion that these people are the best we know who the best are but unles we say it in the polls our voice will never be heard

  225. John

    November 12, 2015 at 8:52 pm

    Mick Ronson???????????????

  226. kaptain beyond

    November 28, 2015 at 3:00 am

    Clarence White. ahem!

  227. Eleni

    December 23, 2015 at 8:03 pm

    Eric Johnson?????????????

  228. Palmerston

    December 23, 2015 at 9:09 pm

    If we are talking guitarists in general rather than specifically rock/blues music then surely Segovia has to be top of the list

  229. Rick

    December 23, 2015 at 9:16 pm

    Maybe they should make an underrated and under appreciated list. Start it off with Alvin Lee, Warren Haynes, Derek Trucks, Robin Trower, Robert Cray, Don Felder, Joe Satriani and Bonamassa.

  230. Joe

    December 23, 2015 at 10:42 pm

    Keith Richards should not be in the top 5, he shouldn’t be in the top 50

  231. Rick Felchlin

    December 23, 2015 at 11:33 pm

    Alvin Lee should at least be in the top ten & is #1 in my book

    • Craig

      October 16, 2017 at 7:10 pm

      The fastest I ever saw.

  232. Bjorn

    December 23, 2015 at 11:56 pm

    I’m really glad that Mike Bloomfield is on the list. He did some really great playing during the late sixties and is nowadays often forgoten on other ‘greatest guitarist’ lists.

    • dick

      May 9, 2016 at 9:38 pm

      …..Steve Winwood not on the list either

  233. Mario Rampi

    December 24, 2015 at 2:02 am

    Non è possibile, Jimmi Page 2° Eric Clapton 2° ??????????
    Scandaloso Rory Gallagher 44° Van Hale 4° ??????????

  234. Hey... I like Keith Richards

    December 24, 2015 at 3:22 am

    Christ people…its just a “best of” list. If you want to support the musicians who didn’t make this list or didn’t make it as high as you think they should’ve…GO BUY THEIR RECORDS OR LISTEN TO THEIR MUSIC!!! And let’s not forget music is not a competition. Keith…Jimi…sure not technical wizards but highly influential and innovative in their own right. Now to move on with the rest of my life….

  235. Ed

    December 24, 2015 at 6:35 am

    I think Paige should be number 1, And I believe Robert Cray should be somewhere on this list.

  236. Bob

    December 24, 2015 at 9:03 am

    Joe Pass, Scott Henderson, Robert Fripp, Eric Gales, Django Reinhardt, Wes Montgomery, Paco de Lucia, Charlie Christian, Derek Bailey, Buckethead,….. just to spontaneously name a few

  237. Pete Kuhlmann

    December 25, 2015 at 10:35 pm

    I agree that Joe Bonomassa and Derek Truck should be there – and Robbie Robertson as well (the Band). And what about Hubie Sumlin. Furthernore, I bet Eric Clapton would be saying that Robert Johnson and Elmore James belong on the list – well up the ladder to the top.

  238. Pete

    March 14, 2016 at 9:50 pm

    I was going to comment on missing guitarists but when I saw Keith Richards at #5 it became obvious to me that the criteria used to compile this list didn’t include talent or skill. Pretty funny actually.

  239. TFC

    March 15, 2016 at 2:55 am

    Ted Nugent should be on the list

    • Glenn Lee

      March 16, 2016 at 1:04 am

      Ted Nugent may be able to play the guitar but he is a disgrace to our country. Complete idiot.

  240. TFC

    March 15, 2016 at 2:58 am

    Alvin Lee

  241. GSK

    March 15, 2016 at 10:27 am

    Any list like like this that fails to include Hank Marvin (at or very near to the top) has absolutely no credibility.

  242. Martin

    March 15, 2016 at 11:42 am

    John Mayall wasn’t a guitarist!!

  243. DAVE

    March 15, 2016 at 12:43 pm

    Billy Jenkins is the best guitarist ever. Never heard of him? Well, he deliberately avoided fame, but if you Youtube him you will see what I mean

  244. dennis schipper

    March 15, 2016 at 12:55 pm

    wowww,,,,,,,,,how about david gilmour,,,,,,any album he has ever played upon.,,,,,,,,,,,,neil young,,,,,mirror ball .,,,,,,,,,zuma,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,…..

  245. Rick Mertz

    March 15, 2016 at 2:09 pm

    F this list. You all suck. Who does think so raise your hand.

  246. Father Ted

    March 15, 2016 at 4:24 pm

    Utter Crap. What about Hank Marvin? One of the main influences of the many of the ‘axe men’ you have cited. Not worth the bandwidth it takes up. This pile of rubbish needs taking down. Bunch of amatuers.

  247. Liz Hoover

    March 15, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    One of my personal favorites is Rik Emmett of Triumph. I still followed him after he left the band. He can play rock, blues, jazz and classical guitar. Not many can play it all.

  248. Seagull

    March 15, 2016 at 6:23 pm

    I miss Dave Edmunds either on the basis of his life’s work, or his musical ability.
    See the name of Alvin Lee above among the comments, very rightfully – how could he be missed out?
    Maybe Dave Davies Could have find a place among the best 50 (even I think Andy Powell and some other fortyany either :D).

  249. Seagull

    March 15, 2016 at 6:30 pm

    Vince Gill ??? ! 😀

  250. Kimi

    March 15, 2016 at 8:52 pm

    One of the most brilliant guitarists I have ever had the pleasure of experiencing, and I say experience because he was absolutely amazing, is Ingvay Monstein. I have seen a lot of guitarists perform live, many of the greats listed here, and I believe Ingvay deserves at least honorable mention.

  251. Max

    March 15, 2016 at 10:40 pm

    Wes Montgomery
    Charlie Christian
    Roy Buchanan
    Pat Metheny
    Joe Pass

    They are way better than 90% of the guitar players on that list.

  252. Steve

    March 16, 2016 at 2:17 am

    How is Eric Johnson not on the list. And having Keith Richards ahead of Stevie Ray & Duane is a joke.

  253. JB

    March 16, 2016 at 5:34 pm

    Not a big fan, but how can you leave Prince off the list?

  254. David Nelson

    March 21, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    Totally agree. Gilmour is Top 10, possibly Top 5. The author of the list is a Moron!

  255. David

    March 21, 2016 at 6:55 pm

    Frankly, I was surprised to see that Peter Green was ranked so low.(38th).

  256. Jon

    March 21, 2016 at 7:41 pm

    This list is close but missing a lot of great guitarist.
    There are a lot of Acoustic Guitar players that are not on the list that should be.
    My first thought was that it should have specified “electric guitar” as that’s all that’s shown.

  257. Jim

    March 21, 2016 at 9:55 pm

    Chet Atkins, although a jazz/country guitarist paved the road for most guitar players. Modern players without their fancy pedals, effects and amps couldn’t come close to being in the same class as Mr. Guitar – Chet Atkins

  258. Michael

    March 21, 2016 at 10:53 pm

    I guess they have never heard of Danny Gatton!!!

  259. Michael

    March 21, 2016 at 10:56 pm

    I agree. Derek and Joe gotta be in the top 50.

  260. rick catarelli

    March 22, 2016 at 4:05 pm

    obviously whoever came up with this list has forgotten about carlos santana.

    • dick

      May 9, 2016 at 9:25 pm

      yes loved Santana…….many greats overlooked

  261. Usel

    April 26, 2016 at 9:45 pm

    I think John is on the great harmonica list

  262. Paul

    April 26, 2016 at 9:50 pm

    Randy Rhoads????
    Dimebag Darrell?????
    Steve Vai?????
    Skunk Baxter????
    Steve Lukather????

  263. Vince

    April 27, 2016 at 1:36 am

    The list isn’t too bad IMO. The order is what I would question as some names are way too high and some not high enough (Johnny Winter, Rory Gallagher). There are some names that definitely should be added and most have already been mentioned but I’d add:
    Paul Kossoff
    Robin Trower
    Joe Bonamassa
    Mick Box
    Michael Shenker
    Rick Derringer

  264. GESmith

    April 27, 2016 at 11:14 am

    Its a bullshit list .. I mean whats the criteria
    If you are going to set about questioning who is the BEST..
    Lets start with some criteria;
    1. Style
    2. Impact in the industry
    3. Longevity over time
    4. Achievement
    5. Longer term
    6. Re-invention

    Sorry Hendrix was a great player but the best ever.. bullshit.. its a myth that players want to believe in. Every time a young kid goes and buys a guitar today,, is it because of Hendrix.. no.. what makes you great isn’t a couple of albums,…. its the whole picture

    You want to see the best ever… watch clapton play stormy monday at the Cream re union concerts… wake up and smell the roses because he ticks all the boxes.. not the one thats 6 ft under and a myth

  265. Arnie

    April 27, 2016 at 11:23 pm

    Erik Brann child prodigy violinist for the Boston Symphony Orchestra before becoming lead guitarist with Iron Butterfly and Flintwhistle probably has more talent than most on the list but died young.

  266. Martin

    April 28, 2016 at 6:57 pm

    Another one of the best guitarists not on the list: Leslie West from Mountain, etc. There is nobody quite like him!!

  267. Janice

    April 29, 2016 at 4:53 pm

    This has some great people, BUT, you didn’t include Duane Eddy, Johnny Cash’e Tennessee Three,and most of all, Prince. James Burton deserved to be higher on the list too. he has played back up for so many people.

  268. bobby Cotner

    April 29, 2016 at 5:04 pm

    Every guitar player alive has a different idea of who is the best guitar player. . It is all a matter of taste, like your taste in food. A list like this is moronic and is a liberals idea of what everyone should think, and that one size fits all. The liberal mind is screwed up.

    • Jim H.

      March 1, 2018 at 9:09 pm

      WTF does “liberal” (whatever that means) have to do with guitarists? Wrong platform, troll.

  269. Andy Rodriguez, Jr.

    May 9, 2016 at 2:59 pm

    Who taught Hendrix those licks………..TERRY KATH !!

  270. Taltos1667

    May 9, 2016 at 5:23 pm

    1 – Roy Buchanan
    2 – Ronnie Montrose
    3 – Martin Barre
    4 – Jeff Healy
    5 – Robert Cray

    These type of lists are, at best subjective and at worst useless. Everybody has their own favourite guitar player(s) and they consider them the best. There is some consensus on some players, though comparing Jimi to E.C. today is irrelevant at best as we don’t know where Jimi might have gone with his music were he still alive today. That goes for any musicians who have passed on, with the exception of some who have already been acknowledged as innovators, Django Reinhart and Robert Johnson being examples of this. It’s like art or writers or actors – it all comes down to personal preference.

  271. Cindy R

    May 9, 2016 at 6:50 pm

    Ian Bairnson should be on there as well.

  272. dick

    May 9, 2016 at 9:23 pm

    Alvin Lee nowhere on that list……… Buddy Guy at # 30……Hendrix was very good but not around long enough to be anywhere near number 1 ……… oh well subjective to the writers tastes

  273. Tom Evans

    May 10, 2016 at 7:29 am

    I’m in the business and I’ve personally seen most of the best guitarists of all time, Hendrix, Page, Townsend, Van Halen, etc. Tommy Bolin should definitely be on the list of the top 50 of all time.

  274. David A Watson

    May 10, 2016 at 12:59 pm

    you lamers…….go download you sum ROY fukin’ CLARK then when his tongue comes out you will see a real picker…..

  275. Adrian Persaud

    May 11, 2016 at 12:06 am

    The person or persons who compiled this list might have some mental problem.It shows clearly that they know very little about the subject of the best “Axe men”…

  276. Brian Matthews

    May 22, 2016 at 10:43 am

    At leased you know you guitar players

  277. russell banker

    May 25, 2016 at 11:21 pm

    Dickie Betts not in the top 10 ????? whoever heard of Alvin Lee ??????????? Robbie Krieger ???????????????? Subjective list at best.

  278. Bob L.

    May 31, 2016 at 6:09 pm

    Where’s Alex Lifeson???

  279. yrjö ikäheimo

    May 31, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    Where Trower really and where is Billy Gibbons

  280. Nicolas Schneider

    May 31, 2016 at 10:37 pm

    This list is trash. Its just a bunch of blues guitarist. How did jack white make it and not John Frusciante on this list?

  281. John Weise

    June 1, 2016 at 5:36 pm

    Warren f”ing Haynes – plays blues, rock, R&B, jazz, country, and some genres that haven’t even been defined. Other than that, every player has their own style so “better” may not play into it, I think it’s a preference of styles that people look at. I’ve only been playing for a year (started at age 53) and am just happy to have that “moment” now and then!!! Not my personal preference on a lot of these, but they are all accomplished players who deserve to be recognized.

  282. Tom Bush

    June 3, 2016 at 10:42 pm

    I can’t believe Michael S. of UFO fame and MSG in not on that list. No Ted Nugent. No Mike Campbell, no Steve Morse, No Ulie Jon Roth, to name a few. There are a few kick ass chick guitar slinger’s too. And the order of the 50 that are on there sucks big time. Get somebody that knows better to make these list. Like Eddie Trunk from That Metal Show.

  283. Tom Bush

    June 3, 2016 at 10:46 pm

    Hey Russel Banker…Alvin Lee was in Ten Years After, one of the great bands of the late 60’s and half of the 70’s. If you listen to classic rock radio, then you may have heard, ” I’d Love To Change The World “..that is Alvin Lee and Ten Years After.

  284. Dennis La Frinere

    June 16, 2016 at 4:14 pm

    Jeff beck!? …number 10? lmfaorotf

  285. Lisa

    June 17, 2016 at 6:02 am


  286. Nick

    June 17, 2016 at 8:03 am

    The heading says axe men this refers to electric guitars. Subjective list all good players, but some greats missing. The science of it obviously refers to “how many times mentioned in the press”, in that case this list would be accurate, but not a true reflection of the best. Cheers

  287. Prince By-Tor

    June 17, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    Just a side Note, there has been nobody before him or that came after “the Master of the Strat” that could make the guitar “sing” like a song bird, and how about all those great songs he wrote… that is why James M. Hendrix is the best person to have ever played a GUITAR!!!
    “Remember the mocking bird, Baby /He use to sing for the Sunshine…”

  288. Allen Plant

    June 17, 2016 at 4:08 pm

    Tom Verlaine (of Television)? Phil Manzanera (of Roxy Music)?

  289. Danny d

    July 9, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    The edge seriously, come on,

  290. Lara

    July 9, 2016 at 3:01 pm

    Eddie Van Halen in front of Keith Richards??? Doubtful.

  291. Jon Vanderheyden

    July 9, 2016 at 3:57 pm

    Jimi’s entire recording career is four years long. Four! Nobody is even in that dudes zip code for creativity and showmanship. Try tackling the solo to axis bold as love and machine gun and then get back to me.


      September 4, 2019 at 11:28 pm

      Any guitar list should not contain any reference to Hendrix.He is on a different page altogether.Let’s not be unfair to other people.If you have any doubts,listen to Manic Depression about five times.

  292. Bytor and the Snowdon

    July 9, 2016 at 7:32 pm

    All good points – its a subjective list. But to leave out Morgan Mckinleyfield is a major disappointment to me. Jimi is number one true that, even over Andres Segovia, but numbers 2-50 are purely how you

  293. Jerry

    July 9, 2016 at 9:23 pm

    No Billy Gibbons, no Robin Trower, no legitimacy.

  294. Kent A

    July 10, 2016 at 12:59 am

    What? No Danny Gatton, Lowell George, Albert Lee, Vince Gill? Not much of a list.

  295. Ruth Ann Brennan

    July 10, 2016 at 2:57 am

    To the person who made up this list. ARE YOU ON DRUGS? NO WAY Keith Richards is ranked higher than Stevie Ray Vaughan or Jeff Beck.

  296. KLM

    July 10, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    I agree – the Reverend Billy G must be on the list.

  297. G-J van der Vis

    July 10, 2016 at 8:24 pm

    Where is Jan Akkerman in your list??? He was chosen to be the best guitarplayer in front of Eric Clapton
    In 1973 by the British music Magazine Melody Maker chosen to be the best gitarist of the world.
    And still going strong.
    And Stevie Ray Vaughn should be next after Jimi Hendrix not behind Keith Richards What is so special about Keith Richards?

  298. Jim Krugh

    July 12, 2016 at 10:39 am

    I don’t know why I even look at these lists.

    The best guitarist is like every best……whatever….. is highly subjective. Lots of these people and others that were omitted appear on lists all the time

    I have my favorites as everyone else does. I am happy to enjoy enjoy great music by anyone who plays it.

  299. Brad Trimble

    July 23, 2016 at 4:23 pm

    keith richards at #5 are you fuggin kiddin me!

  300. Al Farber

    July 23, 2016 at 5:36 pm

    Martin Barre.

  301. Jim

    July 24, 2016 at 1:29 am

    Stupid list. Where is Joe Bonnamassa or Sonny Landreth just to mention two. Also some listed are laughable when talking about guitar playing ability.

  302. Jim

    July 24, 2016 at 1:29 am

    Stupid list. Where is Joe Bonnamassa or Sonny Landreth just to mention two. Also some listed are laughable when talking about guitar playing ability.

  303. Darrell Parks

    July 24, 2016 at 4:13 am

    SRV is sixth? What a joke. Several bluegrass guitarists can flat burn the strings off a guitar, Cody Kilby for one.

  304. JSN

    July 24, 2016 at 4:15 am


  305. Glenn Smith

    July 24, 2016 at 7:29 am

    I have had my say about this before…
    Please whats the criteria… lets get some criteria other than who is the greatest ?/
    I mean what a load of balony. Choose five parameters and let people vote because if you have “longevity” as even one it will change everything, what makes someone the best isn’t one or two records. Really the Hendrix thing is a myth.. great guitarist in his own style but really…

    Please lets vote with some criteria, live performances, longevity, what they ghave done for the industry, recording, and whatever..

  306. Jim Thompson

    July 26, 2016 at 12:02 pm

    Phil Manzanera?!!!
    Mick Ronson?!!
    That list is nuts!
    My list:
    1) Hendrix
    2) Harrison
    3) Manzanera
    4) Ronson
    5) Fripp

  307. Greg Thackray

    August 5, 2016 at 8:13 am

    That’s just it. Guitar playing isn’t really scientific at all unless you do a list purely based on technical ability in which case the list would look totally different to one based on creativity or influence. It’s purely subjective and it’s about the great sounds that are made from the player’s guitar. What about Kurt Cobain or John McGeogh from Magazine, S n the Banshees n Pil as just two examples. There may be much better technical guitar players out there but how many could come up with as many memorable riffs and tunes as those two did?

  308. jim

    August 9, 2016 at 11:48 am

    My Top5 …
    (artists that can play many different styles – capable of both solo and rhythm – high influential to others – blues, flamenco, classical or jazz artists not included)
    1. EC
    2. Duane
    3. Hendrix
    4. Pete Townshend
    5. Burton
    Chuck Berry also for what he created

    No heavy metal shredders included (make me sick and i’ m a guitar player myself)


    September 10, 2016 at 2:29 am

    Any list that does not include FRANK MARINO. ULI JOHN ROTH. MICHEAL SCHENKER ELLIOTT EASTON PAUL KOSSOFF N TOMMY BOLIN is crap what is the big deal with Eric Clapton and jimmy page they are so overrated Ritchie Blackmore is the much better guitar player oh also NEAL SCHON and JOE PERRY they need to be included also

  310. Orlando

    October 13, 2016 at 3:08 am

    Where the hell is Alex Lifeson❓❓❓❓❓❓

  311. Daimauwr

    October 13, 2016 at 10:37 am

    Agree Josephine – where is Hank Marvin. Brian May, Knofler and many others bow at his door and he has influenced many others. And one of the greatest of all was Nokie Edwards – played with the Ventures. If you haven’t heard his version of “by the time I get to Phoenix” then you haven’t heard a guitar “talk”.

  312. Rodrigo Fernandez

    October 17, 2016 at 7:07 am

    This list is a list of pop guitarists, there is a higher level of guitarists that have done so much more than this!
    Allan Holdsworth, Frank Gambale, Steve Vai, Pat Martino etc.

    • Rodrigo Fernandez

      October 17, 2016 at 7:16 am

      So many Jazz guitarists like George Benson, Birelli Lagrenne, Wes Montgomery… The list goes on and on and on… What about more modern guys like Tosin Abasi, a total innovator on 8 string guitar…
      You guys are a bunch of amateurs…

  313. Cooky Mann

    October 17, 2016 at 7:46 pm

    This list isn’t EVEN CLOSE to accurate. This is a list of popular guitarists. If you really want an ACCURATE list of actual greatest guitarists you have to list them by genre, musicianship, dexterity, speed, musicality, etc.
    Not just by the ones who played your favorite song or blew you away when you were high.

  314. Cooky Mann

    October 17, 2016 at 7:49 pm

    There never was nor will there ever be another Allan Holdsworth.

  315. G String

    October 18, 2016 at 5:57 am

    Imagine having a list of 50 greatest composers of all time and not including Mozart, Beethoven and Bach.
    That is like not including Andres Segovia in this list of greatest guitarists.
    Segovia made the guitar an accepted instrument and was the greatest guitar virtuoso of all time.

  316. Simon

    October 18, 2016 at 9:07 am

    Tommy Emmanuel, Robben Ford, Jan Akkerman, Lenny Breau, Pat Metheny, Tony Rice, Clarence White, Robin Trower, Ralph Towner, Steve Morse, Julian Bream, Segovia, John Williams, Pat Martino, Grant Green, Zakk Wylde, Ritchie Kotzen, Joe Walsh, Ted Greene, George Van Eps, Derek Bailey, ,Derek Trucks, Guthrie Govan,Eric Johnson, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai,Buckethead……..


  317. Jake

    October 21, 2016 at 3:44 am

    What? Neil Young is missing? The master of the one note solo? Burn this list!

  318. yada

    October 24, 2016 at 12:56 pm

    Where is Joe Walsh?

  319. Patrick Longworth

    October 24, 2016 at 3:39 pm

    I don’t know who made the list but I am sure they are happy you read the story, came to the site and commented, though perhaps they would appreciate less insulting remarks from people. If many of us are unhappy with how they write or choose their criteria and artists, why do we continue paying attention? If we all stopped coming to the site then maybe they would try and improve or stop altogether?

  320. 4ELLO

    October 24, 2016 at 4:28 pm

    Dorothy ‘Dot’ Wiggin from ‘the Shaggs’.

  321. JJB

    October 24, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    No Stephen Stills? Ridiculous. One of the best acoustic rock guitarists of all time. Even Jimi Hendrix said nobody can play acoustic like Stills.

  322. matthew blaine

    October 24, 2016 at 7:55 pm

    Roy Buchanan
    Dick Dale
    Hank Marvin
    Link Wray

  323. Roman

    October 24, 2016 at 8:49 pm

    Missing some MAJOR talent: Tommy Bolin, Ronnie Montrose, Michael Schenker, Uli Jon Roth. All of these should be in the Top 10 or 20.

  324. alex

    October 24, 2016 at 11:46 pm

    Impossible to agree on something so subjective…but if you want to hear guitar virtuosity, none of the players listed compares to Leo Kotke.

  325. bill

    October 25, 2016 at 6:26 am

    Terry Kath? Hendrix said “He’s better than me.”

  326. Jan Erling J E Iversen

    October 25, 2016 at 4:54 pm

    I miss Ricardo Esteban Valenzuela Reyes on the list!

  327. Robbo

    October 25, 2016 at 7:19 pm

    No Ronnie Montrose = no credibility in the list. End of!

  328. mark thomas

    October 25, 2016 at 11:01 pm

    randy rhodes , pat travers , tony mcphee , ,alvin lee , carlos santana , michael schenker not made the top 50 , who makes this bull shit up ?

  329. DansGrove

    October 26, 2016 at 12:40 pm

    Sadly, Quicksilver Messenger Service’s Gary Duncan is always missing from these lists, He deserves to be there, you just have to listen.

  330. ernie

    October 26, 2016 at 1:06 pm

    Duane Eddy not on the list, best guitarist ever.

    • paul rushworth

      October 18, 2017 at 9:59 am

      duane only copies hank marvin as most guitarist do,and most 60,s guitarist learned from reading bert weeden books,bert weeden ive seen live and the only guitarist who managed on stage on his own and played his own backing,

  331. Adam Smith

    October 26, 2016 at 4:15 pm

    What happened to Country guitar pickers……Should at least mention : Glen Campbell,..Travis Tritt,..Marty Stuart,..Duane Eddy….Merle Travis,..Merle Haggard,…Waylon Jennings,…
    All were great in my book……

  332. kirk

    October 27, 2016 at 7:14 pm

    Really top forty radio stars….ugh

  333. Ocando Mora

    October 28, 2016 at 2:05 am

    Bullshit that list!! I think Number One: Jimmy Hendrck, number two: Joe Satriani, number three: Ritchie Blackmore, number four: Seve Vai and number five: Mark Farner.

  334. Skytalker

    October 28, 2016 at 5:27 pm

    I am very curious what criteria were used to set up this ranking. It is very obvious to me the author never played the guitar let alone his skill in music. Maybe it was their height or weight or popularity.

  335. warren

    October 30, 2016 at 1:57 pm

    David Gilmore,Joe Banamassa, in top 10 for sure

    • Dave

      October 31, 2016 at 1:58 pm

      Totally agree about Joe Bonamassa – whoever drew up this list obviously hasn’t seen or heard him – unbelievable he’s not in there near the top – the man is awesome!

  336. Rick

    October 30, 2016 at 6:33 pm

    Johnny ‘Three Cord’ Ramone at #35 ??? I like the Ramones but at # 35??? Robin Trower not listed is wrong. We could argue all day but each of us has are own taste.

  337. jamie

    October 30, 2016 at 7:20 pm


  338. blankend

    November 10, 2016 at 8:59 am

    I would have rated Johnny Winter, Buddy Guy, and Pete Townsend higher.

  339. laszlo jakabfi

    December 3, 2016 at 1:59 pm

    Why is Hank Marvin of the Shadows not included in the list? His sound is very distinctive and he was a master at his profession.

  340. danny

    December 4, 2016 at 7:56 pm

    what about Alvin lee ten years after frank marino ted neugent

  341. Jason

    December 14, 2016 at 9:49 pm

    Agreed – Gilmour is the greatest. He’s not the fastest, but can certainly work the strings as quickly and complex as called for. BUT … when you hear & feel the notes he plays, it is truly like being transported to an otherworldly place. Lead, Slide, Acoustic – as well as Bass, keyboards, sax, etc. NOBODY can replicate his sound. I would put Beck at #2 – he’s the only other player who can move mountains with a single note and a whammy bar. After that, there’s really a jumble of greats grouped together – Trower, Anastasio, Vai, Vaughn, Page, Hendrix, Malmsteen, Metheny, Dimeola, West, Howe, Hackett, Benson, etc.

    I’ve NEVER thought that much of Clapton …

  342. Jason

    December 14, 2016 at 9:56 pm

    I’m with ya on this … brain damaged list

  343. Charles Wightman

    January 4, 2017 at 1:58 pm

    If names were placed in a hat and listed in the order that they were drawn, I understand the order of “best”….If not, then I don’t understand.

  344. WDH

    January 5, 2017 at 3:33 am

    A few comments: Rory Gallagher at 44? How about top 5?!? And George Harrison making the cut is a sad joke.

  345. Jim

    January 9, 2017 at 2:10 am

    Stanley Jordan???? Robert Cray? Hubert Sumlin? Jorma Kaukonen ? There are many female guitarist that should be on this list. Ana Popavish, Susan Tedeshi, Bonnie Raitt, Sheryl Crowe

  346. WVA

    January 22, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    no,Buckethead,,Chris Duarte,,Walter Trout,,Robin Trower,,Richie Kotzen,,Greg Howe,,Shawn Lane,,Mike Stern,,Mato Nanji,,Michael Hedges,,Jennifer Batten,,Uli Jon Roth,,John Cipolina,,Kenny Burrell,,Carvin Jones,,Rick Nielson,,Page Hamilton,,

  347. Edan

    April 2, 2017 at 8:53 am

    Did they seriously just make a top 50 guitarists lists and leave out the great Randy Rhoads?? Seriously??
    And no, Stevie Ray Vaughn does not belong on this list – he was an OK blues guitarist, but all of his best licks sounded more or less the same.
    And no Eric Clapton does not belong in the top ten. He was and is a very good blues player, nothing more than that. He was in the right place at the right time, so he got very famous, but his skills have always been above average, nothing outstanding.

  348. Crashman~

    April 18, 2017 at 11:22 am

    I Don’t See Ronny Montrose,, Pete Townshend,, Or the Late Great Tommy Bolin,, Who ever made this list is way, way Off Base,, ???? !~

  349. marcoPiton

    April 19, 2017 at 3:33 am



  350. Gil

    April 22, 2017 at 9:11 am

    1.Allan Holdsworth
    2.everybody else

  351. Cole Johnson

    April 26, 2017 at 11:19 pm

    Roger Stein of the tubes. He can play it hard and make it look easy. A rocker that has paid his dues and deserves recognition.

  352. Mike

    July 5, 2017 at 6:45 pm

    Missing Neil Schon, Steve Lukather, Tom Scholz, and Rudolf Schenker

  353. Peter Blake

    July 24, 2017 at 8:21 pm

    George Benson?

  354. Tim Reher

    July 25, 2017 at 2:05 am

    Pretty similar with what I would have done and I listen to a LOT of guitar music, Rock, Jazz, accoustic- you name it. Top 50 is too hard- top 100 is easier! I miss:
    Robin Trower
    Robert Cray
    Albert Collins
    Link Wray
    Baden Powell
    Personal no 1: Peter Green

  355. Fr

    July 25, 2017 at 5:01 am

    Where is Randy Rhoads ???

  356. C W Hill

    July 25, 2017 at 6:16 am

    So many greats like Hendrix but what about Steve Vai ? Man

  357. joe waye

    July 26, 2017 at 3:45 pm

    Another joke A-list of guitarists…its more about popularity rather than talent.Please do not put jazz or fusion guitarists on the list (they forgot more in their sleep last night) most of the who`s who on your list are three chord bandits or power chord pretenders.Many on the list want to be Allan Holdsworth….haha funny he isn`t on the list…Apples and Oranges …no comparing in other words …how can you have Chet Atkins and Jack White ,Jimi Hendrix and Django Reinhardt up against each other? The list is of your favorite players and its obvious that you don`t have any idea what guitar playing is….stick to what you know man!

  358. Jon Whitconb

    July 26, 2017 at 7:46 pm

    how the fuck can you leave Danny Gatton off this list

  359. Rvstmd

    July 26, 2017 at 8:33 pm

    How about the Dutch gitarist Jan Akkerman

  360. Owen leng

    July 27, 2017 at 11:00 am

    You have forgotten the Best one Ever JOE Walsh.

  361. George Miller

    July 27, 2017 at 10:07 pm

    Eric Clapton.
    Nobody else close.

  362. Rodolfo

    July 28, 2017 at 3:08 pm

    There is no such thing as the 50 best guitarist ever. Each have their own thing.

  363. Alan Anderson

    July 29, 2017 at 1:15 am

    How did Alvin Lee get left off this list , what a joke .

  364. DF

    July 29, 2017 at 3:09 pm

    No Neal Schon, are you effing kidding me?

  365. James Barnaby

    August 4, 2017 at 10:57 am

    It’s a list of lists! Try reading the piece before you slag it off. Dick.

  366. job boersma

    August 13, 2017 at 11:49 pm

    Joe Walsh John Harrington Nils Lofgren Steve Lukather Lowell George JohnMcFee

  367. Terry Mc

    August 27, 2017 at 3:00 pm

    I definitely agree. Joe should be at the top and Tommy just brilliant. Haven’t they listened ? Who made this list ffs?

  368. Ted Buchanan

    September 3, 2017 at 7:54 pm

    Mark Knopfler @ 17 what a joke who compiled this list ,mine Hendix/Peter Green/mark Knopfler no contest.

    • Edward

      February 26, 2018 at 10:40 am

      also Scotty Moore left out of the list?!?!?!… the inventor of rockabilly and Guitar that changed the World..

  369. Keith ferguson

    September 8, 2017 at 11:23 am

    Everybody just take a step back! The current day blues guitarist Joe Bonomassa is the reigning king.Don’t let nostalgia cloud your opinion

  370. j. vierra

    September 30, 2017 at 9:31 am

    prince,then the other 49……………..

  371. MAX PAPIS

    October 3, 2017 at 6:59 pm


  372. Vin

    October 7, 2017 at 8:47 pm

    The correct list 1 Clapton , 2 Beck,3 Santana.4 Lee., 4 Schon,4 Page 5 Hendrix

  373. chaz

    October 10, 2017 at 10:35 pm

    Rory Gallagher deserves to be a lot higher, somewhere in the top five.

  374. Alan

    October 16, 2017 at 4:56 pm

    Stuart Adamson

  375. Phil Prosser

    October 16, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    Where is Steve Winwood or for that matter Eric Clapton?

    • Kiwi40

      October 16, 2017 at 7:27 pm

      EC at 3

  376. Randall Kozitka

    October 16, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    ” Taste is as unique & original as we are individual puny human beans.”

  377. Mark

    October 16, 2017 at 9:06 pm

    Yes everybody on the list is a great guitar player but what’s the point of a list if it’s not in any kind of order? You call it the 50 greatest guitarists but then underneath say it’s not a best of list??????

    Anyways it’s laughable how low Gilmore and Blackmore are on this list and equally laudable that some of your honorable mentions aren’t on the actual list above several of those who are. Likewise the omission of Martin Barre, Joe Bonamassa and Kenny Wayne Sheppard from both the list and the honorable mentions is absurd.

  378. Jack

    October 16, 2017 at 9:11 pm

    Peter Frampton and Joe Walsh?

  379. Brian arnopp

    October 16, 2017 at 9:24 pm

    Jaco Pastorius?

  380. Guitar

    October 16, 2017 at 10:44 pm

    Who made this list??where is Prince??????

  381. Mike

    October 16, 2017 at 10:50 pm

    I wouldn’t mind seeing Pat Metheny on this list along with Bruce Cockburn (I’m a fan of his style) & Phil Keaggy whom many people might not know but I would say is certainly better than thr likes of Slash or Jack White. In the long run this is all about personal preference.

  382. Raffaele Galiano

    October 16, 2017 at 10:54 pm

    Back in the seventies Eric Clapton admitted that Duane Allman was a better guitarist than him. If Eric is third, why Skydog is seventh?

  383. David

    October 17, 2017 at 12:20 am

    Where’s Jeff Healey in the list?

  384. Tom

    October 17, 2017 at 1:07 am

    Dick Dale, King of the Surf Guitar.

  385. Mick Tisron

    October 17, 2017 at 1:45 am

    Before I even read the list, I pegged Clapton in the top 3. And what do you know, there he is number three. What a joke! Perhaps the most overrated guitarist that ever lived.

  386. Dave

    October 17, 2017 at 2:52 am

    Mick grant,Giacomo Agostini,mike hailwood,joey Dunlop,Kenny Roberts,Barry Sheene,Phil read,oops I digress

  387. Mgb

    October 17, 2017 at 4:47 am

    What about George Harrison & Keith Richards, they weren’t technically great but musically giants!

  388. David

    October 17, 2017 at 5:18 am

    Ridiculous list. Missing too many greats, from Trower to Jeff Beck, Paco de Lucia, Leo Kottke, Phil Manzanera, and my personal favorite, Jan Akkerman.

  389. tomblockmore

    October 17, 2017 at 6:47 am

    1.ritchie blackmore 2.jimi page 3.jeff beck 4. eric clapton 5.rory galagher

  390. The Teacher

    October 17, 2017 at 1:09 pm

    Can you read??

  391. Jojo

    October 17, 2017 at 3:18 pm

    who’s the IDIOT that made this list… does he or she even knows what a guitar is? this is actually the worst I’ve seen so far

  392. Garrett Jennings

    October 17, 2017 at 3:47 pm

    Definitely my favorite acoustic/rhythm guitar player is Pete Townshend

  393. Christophe Guais

    October 17, 2017 at 4:50 pm

    Where is Roger Nelson aka Prince ?

  394. martin

    October 17, 2017 at 5:21 pm

    Craig Myers?

  395. Tim Chandler

    October 17, 2017 at 5:45 pm

    Brad Paisley?

  396. Alex Fedoruk

    October 17, 2017 at 5:47 pm

    Roy Buchanan is #1!

  397. RIck

    October 17, 2017 at 6:13 pm

    Interesting there is no mention of Phil Keagy, the guy Eric Clapton thought was the best guitarist in the world.

  398. George

    October 17, 2017 at 8:27 pm

    Keith is the greatest rhythm guitar player I have ever watch or heard. And I’ve heard and played with many. He deserves the accolades.

    • Polly Molly

      November 29, 2017 at 8:16 pm

      Townshend smokes Richards as a rhythm guitarist

      • Benji Franklin

        April 30, 2018 at 1:00 am

        Hendrix was a better rythym player than both of them together, along with Nile Rogers.

  399. Marcus Turner

    October 17, 2017 at 8:29 pm

    Okay, this is specific to Rock/Pop/Blues.

    No Andrés Segovia?

  400. vernon bennett

    October 17, 2017 at 8:31 pm

    what about Glen Campbell? Have you seen any of the clips on Utube with Glen? And another Jerry Reed?

  401. George

    October 17, 2017 at 8:32 pm

    Is being a lead guitarist the criteria? Keith Richards is the greatest rhythm guitar player I’ve ever seen. I thought the list was greatest guitar players not the greatest lead guitar players.

  402. Bruce

    October 17, 2017 at 8:46 pm

    Alvin Lee from 10 years after should be on this stupid list

  403. Gary

    October 17, 2017 at 8:53 pm

    Have you not heard of Alvin Lee (Ten Years After) ??

  404. Max Sommers

    October 17, 2017 at 8:58 pm

    So, let me try and understand this. The compilers of this list are saying that Johnny Ramone is a better guitar player than Pat Metheny, Scott Henderson, Allan Holdsworth, John Scofield…….What utter nonsense. I would say those four are head and shoulders above almost everyone on this list.

  405. Adam Massey

    October 17, 2017 at 9:32 pm

    Rory’s too low and Beck’s the best. Can’t believe Lifeson is not mentioned.

  406. Max Sommers

    October 17, 2017 at 9:33 pm

    Seriously, everyone who is happy with Hendrix and Page being the top two, give this a listen. It might not change your mind, but you will love it anyway.

    • Max Sommers

      October 17, 2017 at 10:28 pm

      I think that this is a bit like what Hendrix might have been doing today had he not died.

  407. TOMMYV

    October 17, 2017 at 9:40 pm



  408. Ted Seay

    October 17, 2017 at 10:04 pm

    Personally, I would not have rated Jackie Chan above Bruce Lee.

  409. Pat Kent

    October 17, 2017 at 10:09 pm

    Just two words

    Martin Barre

    • Adam Massey

      October 17, 2017 at 11:01 pm

      Spot on!

  410. William Pellegrini

    October 17, 2017 at 10:13 pm

    of those alive and even some dead have all jumped at the chance to play with Arlen Roth he has recorded with 80 % of the list and played with everybody who people complained are not on te list tower ,cropper, duane eddy ,les paul, red volkheart , albert lee , johny winter, go listen on i tunes to Rocket 88 (duet with winter last thing he recorded before the dirt nap)

  411. Tetsu Tundra

    October 18, 2017 at 12:17 am

    Michael Karoli, Chris Karrer.

  412. Ronni

    October 18, 2017 at 12:43 am

    My first thought was “Where is Robin Trower?” If these people are old enough to get the others right they should never have missed him!

  413. frank mitchello

    October 18, 2017 at 1:04 am

    No Larry Coryell? No Alvin Lee? No Roy Buchanan? hogwash

  414. Johnny

    October 18, 2017 at 1:23 am

    It’s not about who’s on the list, It’s about who’s not on the list.
    This doesn’t have:
    Scottie Moore (Elvis Guitarist)
    Buddy Guy (Chicago blues Man)
    Ernie Isley (Isley Brothers guitarist beginning when he has 15 yrs. old with It’s your thing)
    Willie Johnson (Sun Records session Man and Howlin’ Wolf guitarist when he recorded for sun)
    Hubert Sumlin (Howlin’ Wolf Guitarist on “Smokestack Lighting” in Chicago at Chess Records)
    Prince (No need to comment, Clapton thought he has the best)
    Michael Hampton (Funkadelic and Parliament guitarist)
    Joe Messina (Motown session Man)
    Robert White (Motown session Man)
    Eddie Willis (Motown session Man)
    Steve Lukather (Toto Guitarist)
    Dick Dale (Surf guitarist)
    Guitar Slim (Blues Man)
    Wayne Bennett (Bobby Blue Bland guitarist)
    Gary Moore (Blues Guitarist)
    Freddie King (Blues Guitarist)
    Jimmy Reed (Blues Guitarist
    Elmore James (Blues Guitarist)
    John Lee Hooker (Blues Guitarist)
    Muddy Waters (Blues Guitarist)
    Gene Vincent (Plastic Elvis and Rockabilly Pioneer)
    Brian Setzer (Stay Cats guitarist)
    Jeff Beck
    Johnny Horton (Rockabilly Guitarist)
    Johnny Burnette (Rockabilly guitarist)

    • Mike

      February 5, 2018 at 6:05 am

      You have Gary Moore and not Rory Gallagher ?

  415. freddy pinto

    October 18, 2017 at 1:33 am

    Where alvin lee ( ten year after )

  416. GP

    October 18, 2017 at 3:39 am

    Precisely! The very best.

  417. Argyle

    October 18, 2017 at 3:55 am

    Ridiculous! Johnny Ramone beats out Albert King Peter Green and Johnny Winter… foolish!!!

  418. Russ

    October 18, 2017 at 4:12 am

    Frank Zappa

  419. Dilt

    October 18, 2017 at 5:22 am

    So many people measuring so many dicks! Wish I was selling tape measures….

  420. Meddle

    October 18, 2017 at 6:26 am

    Clapton at 3 with SRV at 6? I seem to recall Clapton being terrified to follow SRV as an opener! Here’s a clip of SRV looking like they just scraped him off the floor and handed him his strat: Yeah I gotta put that above Clapton.

  421. Mike Duffy

    October 18, 2017 at 6:43 am


    • Meddle

      October 19, 2017 at 3:29 am

      Seriously! Prince should totally be on this list.

  422. mike

    October 18, 2017 at 6:53 am

    mick ronson?

  423. paul rushworth

    October 18, 2017 at 9:49 am

    who,s that

  424. Likah

    October 18, 2017 at 9:56 am

    and did you ever played guitar my boi ? ;p
    Mark Knopfler, is a better guitarist than Zappa ? if you realy think so you might want to listen more of Frank’s music and try to remove your finger from you ears when you do, i know when you listen to knopfler it doesn’t change much, but that’s not how you listen to music you know ^^

  425. Darrell

    October 18, 2017 at 2:33 pm

    Chuck berry top 10…………REALLY???
    AlvinLee, Frampton, Marriott, Randy Rhoads, plenty more that should have been there Probably at least 10-15 shouldn’t be on this list

  426. adrian

    October 18, 2017 at 6:53 pm

    of 100 people, 10 do not like home cooking

  427. Rick

    October 18, 2017 at 7:14 pm

    Lindsey Buckingham is probably the most under rated guitarist around.


      May 2, 2018 at 9:29 pm


  428. robert

    October 19, 2017 at 12:28 am

    no Rory Gallagher,Gary moore, Dave Meneketti. their contributions are indelable on the rock landscape.

    • robert

      October 19, 2017 at 12:31 am

      sorry rory was mentioned

  429. Thilo

    October 19, 2017 at 7:49 am

    … this is a pretty funny list … just to mention some names that definetely have been missed … steve vai, allan holdsworth, paco de lucia, brett garsed, steve morse, steve lukather, guthrie govan, andy timmons and so many others …

  430. alan

    October 20, 2017 at 3:59 am

    popularity contest…..

  431. Finger Picker

    October 20, 2017 at 7:02 am

    Elliott Randall-Lead guitar on Reelin’ In The Years.should be on the list.

  432. Rick

    October 20, 2017 at 7:05 pm

    there is no way Jimi Hendrix is #1 .. there is only 1 maybe 2 songs tht he does tht any person can name ofd the top of there head ,, he is one of the most overated guitarist ever, you cannot count showmanship

  433. Alicanchino

    October 21, 2017 at 1:20 am

    No one in this list has the skills to play flamenco. It is obvious that the best ones in this list wouldn’t qualify for a list containing flamenco players. Paco de Lucía is a more complete guitar player. Most in this list use just one hand and a pick on the other.

  434. Muzzlehatch

    October 21, 2017 at 5:23 am

    How about Phil Keaggy and Joe Bonamassa

  435. LDG

    October 21, 2017 at 11:26 am

    Hendrix is grossly over-rated. He was of his time but not particularly technically gifted. Indeed most of his ‘solos’ were little more than feedback, noise and showmanship but musically poor! I would rate ex John Mayall sideman Buddy Whittington way above most of the famous names on the list. You have also only called your list 50 greatest guitarist without specifying a genre. What about classical guitarist John Williams, he must surely rank in the top 50. Jose Feliciano also merits a place. At least Django made it!

  436. Eric

    October 22, 2017 at 10:57 am

    Apart from Wes Montgomery no jazz guitarists at all??!!??
    John McLaughlin, Pat Metheny, Mike Stern, John Scofield, Joe Pass, Bill Frisell, Terje Rypdal, Al Dimeola, Paco de Lucia and so many others not mentioned here ……

    A strange list …….

  437. ALBERTO

    October 24, 2017 at 12:32 am


  438. Dr Sweetpea Smart

    October 24, 2017 at 6:44 pm

    Once again, where is Paul Kossoff?

  439. Bry

    November 8, 2017 at 7:08 am

    Alex Lifeson, Steve Gaines, Allen Collins, Micky Moody, Bernie Marsden

  440. Joachim Dreibholz

    November 8, 2017 at 10:03 am

    I was wondering when someone finally was gonna mention Al di Meola,also Martin Barre (Jethro Tull) is missing on that list!

  441. Roger C.

    November 18, 2017 at 6:34 pm

    where is Kirk Hammet? ? ?

  442. Cinco

    November 27, 2017 at 7:19 pm

    Terry Kath has to be high on this list.

  443. CFurg

    November 27, 2017 at 7:56 pm

    Nice list but any list these days that doesn’t include Joe Bonamassa is incomplete. at least you have Rory Gallagher

  444. Earl Dechter

    November 28, 2017 at 12:19 am

    I know you mentioned Charlie Christian who basically was playing rock in the 30’s but I don’t see him on the list nor do I see Jim Mccarty from the Detroit Wheels. Most famous players have at one time or the other listen to Charlie.C. he was one bad jammer

  445. baron

    November 28, 2017 at 2:05 am

    Rory Gallagher # 44…Keef #5…..LOFL!!

  446. Stuart

    November 28, 2017 at 2:24 am

    If you’re going to list all the Allman Brothers guitarists then you should add Warren Haynes to the list. He’s pretty damn good as well.

  447. Brent

    November 28, 2017 at 3:45 am

    Stephen Stills is underrated here as usual. He is better than many who made the list.

  448. Petr

    November 28, 2017 at 4:50 am

    The creator of several immortal riffs, which nearly EVERY single guitar player tried to play at least one time in his life, definitely deserves to be there.

  449. kevin

    November 28, 2017 at 8:59 am

    there is a Swedish Guitarist that i my opinion rates a mention in the top 50 his name Ynowie Melstrom

  450. G. Chris G.

    November 28, 2017 at 10:08 am

    The only electric guitarist that can actually play Hendrix, and actually sound like Hendrix, is Randy Hansen. What I like about him is that, for the most part, he is a Hendrix cover guitarist–and he actually sounds like Hendrix. Go to youtube .com and listen to Machine Gun played by Randy Hansen. A lot of people say that nobody can play Hendrix like Hendrix, but Randy Hansen can.

  451. Alan Pollard

    November 28, 2017 at 11:08 am

    Gary Moore should be in the top 3. Gary moore could play most styles Rock, Blues , Classical, Jazz etc to name a few. His playing was fiull of emotion and heart . Listen to Still Got The Blues or the rocker Texas Strut on how an unbelieveable player he was. It is about time Gary got inducted in the Rock Hall of Fame. Rock In Peace Gary Legend Moore 1952 – 2011

  452. Dave

    November 28, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    Come on guys… I’ve been listening to a lot of guitarists and play (mostly blues) guitar myself. Very simply put, apart from the partial subjectivity of any list, the point is that any cross-genre list is stupid… the clearest example is ramone vs montgomery…. could ramone ever have played jazz? he probably doesn’t or didn’t even know what it was. could wes montgomery contribute inventing or reinventing punk ? don’t think so! (lucky him)…. could van halen do a finest blues solo than peter green ? don’t think so! could peter green ever invent the guitar Language of the following decades ? don’t think so! just one thing is 100% sure: jimi best axeman eveeeeeeeeeeeeeeer !!! 😀

  453. Dave

    November 28, 2017 at 1:40 pm

    Come on guys… I’ve been listening to a lot of guitarists and play (mostly blues) guitar myself. Very simply put, apart from the partial subjectivity of any list, the point is that any cross-genre list is stupid… the clearest example is ramone vs montgomery…. could ramone ever have played jazz? he probably doesn’t or didn’t even know what it was. could wes montgomery contribute inventing or reinventing punk ? don’t think so! (lucky him)…. could van halen do a finest blues solo than peter green ? don’t think so! could peter green ever invent the guitar Language of the following decades ? don’t think so! just one thing is 100% sure: jimi best axeman eveeeeeeeeeeeeeeer !!! 😀

  454. Ally

    November 28, 2017 at 3:35 pm


    Andy Partridge (XTC)
    Steve Jones (The Sex Pistols)

  455. ed_marin666

    November 30, 2017 at 11:09 am

    Where’re Scotty Moore, Cliff Gallup, Brian Setzer, Bert Jansch, John Cippollina? This is a joke seriously…

  456. Benroo

    November 30, 2017 at 5:32 pm

    How about Roy Buchanan and Michael Bloomfield or Yngwie Malmstein?

  457. Benroo

    November 30, 2017 at 6:06 pm

    Hank only came after the Ventures.

  458. Geomcm

    November 30, 2017 at 11:06 pm

    Prince brilliant guitarist

  459. Steen

    December 1, 2017 at 4:46 pm

    2 – 5 & 9 out of the list
    Jeff Beck – Frank Zappa – Buddy Guy – Jimi Hendrix as numbers: 1 -2 – 3: & 4

  460. Scott

    December 3, 2017 at 10:33 pm

    Must be a sexist person who made up this list of all-male guitarists. Nancy Wilson of Heart is not in the top 50? Try playing “Crazy on You.” This list is crazy.

  461. David Marrero

    December 15, 2017 at 7:41 am

    Roy Clark and some that are not famous.I saw Santana playing with some Spanish players and he wasn’t even close.

  462. John

    December 26, 2017 at 9:35 pm

    Glen Campbell… amazing! Lousy list…

    • Ron Schendorf

      September 4, 2019 at 9:57 pm

      John you stated “Glen Campbell…amazing! Lousy list…”. Please clarify Campbell shouldn’t be on the list or you were surprised that someone acknowledged his playing?

  463. Darrell Parks

    December 26, 2017 at 11:23 pm

    Vince Gill, Ricky Skaggs, Cody Kilby, bluegrass but light up an acoustic. Unreal speed. Frank Merino, anyone? Usual click-bait article. SRV #5?????

  464. BILL

    December 27, 2017 at 1:33 am


  465. JB Harris

    December 27, 2017 at 5:59 am

    Wtf Jerry Garcia #39! He wasn’t just a great guitar player, he was the leader of a nation. Dickey Betts 45!!! Com’on he was the Allman Bros’ instrumental backbone after Duane died.

  466. George

    December 27, 2017 at 12:36 pm

    This list is not about being a lead guitarist. It apparently is a list about being an all-around guitarist. Keith Richards belongs exactly where he is. Best rhythm guitar player on The planet.

  467. stuart shaw

    December 27, 2017 at 6:48 pm

    what about Roy buchanan as well

  468. Ken Hink

    December 27, 2017 at 10:12 pm

    I agree with you on both Roy Clark and Phil Keaggy. I am a huge Roy Clark and I never seen him on any lists. Phil Keaggy also a wonderful guitarist.

  469. Drew McQuade

    December 27, 2017 at 11:27 pm

    How bout Steve “guitar” Miller and Boz Scaggs? Couldn’t they crack the list? Also I’d put SRV at 2 and maybe even 1

  470. John

    December 28, 2017 at 1:17 am

    Where’s our old mate, Joe Satriana.
    Gary Moore.
    Robin Grower (still touring)
    Sorry folks. Science? No Soul in your choices. A lot of it is just populist. I do agree with many of your choices. Wrong order.

  471. Paul Trembley

    December 28, 2017 at 2:49 am

    you had to mention Pat Metheny, he’s an excellent guitar player! like how many guitarists can play a four-neck guitar, and it’s programmable. I would definitely place him within the top 10! start with Hendrix, then Trower, Yngwie Malmsteen Pat Metheny, Mike Oldfiel, Jimmy Page, Eric Clapton, Tony Iommi, Joe Walsh, Santana, John McGlothin, and Frank Marino, in that order!

  472. Jeff L

    December 28, 2017 at 3:24 am

    1. Stevie should be #2
    2. Derek Trucks????
    3. Not gonna dig any further, way too many other issues lol

  473. Gordon Steel

    December 28, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    Brian May should be much higher IMO. I love his solo work on the first 2 Queen albums, also he did that “Guitar Jazz Band” thing on A Night At The Opera, great fun! J Mascis is another of my faves, loud, dirty, fuzzed up and melodic.

  474. brian dongelewic

    December 28, 2017 at 2:38 pm

    ummm…ever hear of a man named Prince? he is the alltime #1. No contest.

  475. Pickett

    December 28, 2017 at 3:48 pm

    Jack White makes the list but Prince, Eric Johnson, Clarence White, and Tony Rice do not?? Bullshit list made up by some ding dong in his pajamas.

  476. Doug

    December 28, 2017 at 6:57 pm

    Tommy Emmanuel …Never heard of him ?? You tube it

    • Theo

      April 3, 2018 at 4:31 pm

      YES! He’s a real wizard!

  477. Dr Sweetpea Smart

    December 28, 2017 at 7:08 pm

    Once again Paul Kossoff is missing. He might have died 40 years ago, but just listen to Free…..I rest my case.

  478. Stormin'

    December 29, 2017 at 2:42 pm

    Ok, doesn’t do any harm but my idea of a great guitarist is being able to make out some sort of tune whether fast or slow so Eddie Van Halen at number 4? He might have been the world’s fastest at some time but what he was actually playing was also sometimes a mystery. If he was 4 where is Jan Akkerman? Brilliant but also suffered with too much speed at times. Where is Robin Trower? Rory Gallagher at 45 was it? Madness. Of course Dr Sweetpea Smart has also cited an obvious omission in Paul Kossoff (just treat yourselves to a hearing of Tons of Sobs). And then there’s the small matter of NO JOE BONNAMASSA??? Amen.

  479. Laurence

    December 29, 2017 at 9:34 pm

    Can’t believe Pops Chubby is not on the list.

  480. KD

    December 29, 2017 at 11:24 pm

    Clapton was no Hendrix. But Hendrix was no Clapton. And neither were a SRV.
    All innovators, all fantastic. SRV and Hendrix had the speed, but Clapton had the perfection and depth, leading the way for the electric guitars collaboration with the AMP.
    I think SRV and Hendrix played great guitar. But Clapton was a great guitar player and the most complete guitar player.
    Then you add Gilmore and his fantastic depth.
    Wow. All fantastic. But for actual perfection, innovation the purist is Clapton. Although he lived on past Glory’s for the past 30 odd years. Jimi was the king of the guitar. And no one may beat that although SRV is Close.
    It’s a bit of a joke that Gary more and Bonamassa aren’t anywhere really to be seen.
    For me although nothing alike and there no comparison between them, Jimi and Eric are the king and God and deserve to be there for their on merit for their influence on the rest of the pack.
    Not to say Clapton wasn’t influenced by Cale and Hendrix wasn’t influenced by Clapton.
    But SRV, Gilmore, and Moore aren’t far behind.
    Page made too many mistakes and so often Richards did too.

  481. Chuck

    December 31, 2017 at 1:53 am

    Where’s Mark Tremont

    • Dwayne Perini

      December 31, 2017 at 1:30 pm

      I read everybodies comment on the top 50 guitarist and nobody has mentioned fricking RANDY RHODES are you all deaf or what And Jimi Hendrix was good but he played SLOOPYas hell live so no he isn’t # 1 top ten yes but not #. 1 played to SLOPPY IN CONCERT my #. 1 is JIMMY PAGE

  482. PM

    January 3, 2018 at 4:04 pm

    And how about Paco de Lucia, Tommy Emmanuel, Albert Lee, Scott Henderson and Robben Ford?

  483. PM

    January 3, 2018 at 4:12 pm

    And I almost forgot John Hammond Jr. (especially on steel guitar) and Jeff Healey, though they can be missed out for obvious reasons.

  484. James

    January 10, 2018 at 7:28 pm

    WHAT??? No Alvin Lee, Joe Walsh, Billy Gibbons, Walter Becker, Michael Schenker. Did you miss Ten years after’s “I’m Goin’ Home” at Woodstock? Absolutely awesome guitar work…Joe Walsh’s “Rocky Mountain Way”, Billy Gibbons’ “Just Got Paid” Walter Becker’s “Hey Nineteen” Michael Schenker’s “This Kids including Between the Walls” from 1975’s Force It….
    Every one of these guys deserves a mention in the top 25, much less top fifty. Oh and please what about Duane Allman???

  485. Will Kelsall

    January 13, 2018 at 12:16 am

    Ah yes,! Interesting list…but shouldn’t it be titled “My favorite white guitarists from the 60s and 70s” (and couple of black guys for luck..No women though)

  486. Bobby K

    January 20, 2018 at 11:34 pm

    What about Chet Atkins (dubbed “Mr. Guitar), Tommy Emmanuel, Terry Kath, Brad Paisley, and Albert Lee? These are serious heavyweights who have influenced countless players.

  487. Alucard

    January 25, 2018 at 6:24 pm

    What about George Kooymans he has been playing for 50+ years and still sounds great

  488. jim vierra

    January 28, 2018 at 10:50 am


  489. Ronaldr

    February 3, 2018 at 5:05 am

    This list was written by an American for sure as Jimmy Page is a much better Guitarist than Jimi Hendricks and Eric Clapton #3 he is a much over rated Guitarist for starters Keith Richards is a much better guitarist and Van Halen in the top 10 and Brian May 27 this list is a waste of time even reading it.

  490. Ronaldr

    February 3, 2018 at 5:08 am

    This list was written by an American for sure #1 Jimmy Page is a much better Guitarist than Jimi Hendricks and Eric Clapton #3 he is a much over rated Guitarist for starters Keith Richards is a much better guitarist and Van Halen in the top 10 and Brian May 27 this list is a waste of time even reading it.

  491. Lee Dumont

    February 3, 2018 at 1:55 pm

    Paco de Lucía

  492. Jammin' Jeff

    February 3, 2018 at 11:41 pm

    There is NO Top 50, or Top 10 or Top anything. Could you put Joe Pass against SRV ? OR Jimi against James Burton ? Or Larry Carlton against Ace Frehely ? No, they play different styles of music. That list is shit – Johnny Ramone ahead of Joe Perry ? There’s great guitarists who aren’t even mentioned, or mentioned in passing, like my man Larry Carlton, Steven Lukather is a monster ! Steve Gaines from Lynyrd Skynyrd is just phenomenal, as are Allen & Gary from Skynyrd.Paul Simon is incredible, as is Brian Setzer. I could on & on and mention guys not even on this list. Walter Trout, Sonny Landreth, Craig Chaquico, Russ Freeman, Roy Clark, Jerry Reed, Chieli Minucci, Vince Gill, Tommy Emanuel, Al DiMeola, Paco Dilucia, John McLaughlin, etc… there’s way too many to mention. Ace Frehley made we want to play the guitar, Jimmy Page made me want to be great and I thought Joe Perry was the kewlest guitarist ever ( still do ) – it’s all subjective…

  493. Brian Wawryshyn

    February 4, 2018 at 12:01 am

    Uhhh,,,,Billy Gibbons? No idea how he isn’t on this list.

  494. Nadine

    February 4, 2018 at 11:46 am

    Lest we forget Terry Kath of Chicago. Even Hendrix said Terry was a better player than him. !!!

  495. Edward Ruckman

    February 5, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    Kieth Richards #5 ? Really?

  496. Roy Tyler

    February 6, 2018 at 9:27 pm

    Keith Richards at #5? That is outright laughable. Umm… Chet Atkins, Andre Segovia? Merle Travis, Django Reinhardt, Al Di Meola? What bizarre qualifications would lead you to believe that Keith Richards is anywhere near these same league as any of those guys?

    • Nina E Newberry

      February 8, 2018 at 3:57 am

      Who started it all ? The guitar that rocked the world. Listen to early Elvis. Scotty Moore . Very long ago and I was a witness.

  497. BobP

    February 8, 2018 at 9:11 pm


  498. Edgar Martin

    February 8, 2018 at 9:56 pm

    Now, you’re talking! Very clean & precise execution! Others prominently to mention (not in any of these comments: Kenny Burrell, Jimmy Raney, Pat Martino, Joe Pass, Jim Hall, Laurindo Almeida…but the greatest, bar-none is Andre Segovia! All the above had excellent technique, but also employed something much more…taste! Buddy Emmons (steel) should be mentioned also.

  499. Charles Wightman

    February 9, 2018 at 2:12 am

    James Burton 42???

  500. Chazz Brown

    February 15, 2018 at 6:20 am

    This list is f’d up. No Ernie Isley, No Randy Rhodes, No Robin Trower, No Don Feldor, No Neal Schon, No Lindsey Buckingham, No Joe Walsh, No Prince, You’re outta your mind with K. Richards @ #5. REPLACE him with CARLOS SANTANA. Disappointed that Jerry Garcia is on the list. Seen the Grateful Dead in Chicago early ‘80’s I think Jerry fell asleep a couple times – the only people moving were the apocalyptic zombie freaks floating in the aisles. Slash 46 on list needs to be in top15. The Edge should be at #80.

  501. louis spironello

    February 22, 2018 at 12:09 am

    Where the heck is Terry Kath?

    • Michel CHAURAND

      February 28, 2018 at 5:51 pm

      Nous sommes d’accord, il faut écouter entre autre le magistral “Live in Japan” Double LP 1972.

    • Michel CHAURAND

      February 28, 2018 at 5:58 pm

      Nous sommes d’accord, il faut écouter le magistral double LP “Live in Japan” 1972.

  502. Simon Barton

    February 25, 2018 at 10:46 pm

    I really should pass these things by. Anyway it’s the usual popularity contest (Keef in the top ten – really?) I’m surprised at the number of people questionig Hendrix being up there. I suggest those doing so give him a proper listen. He is the most innovative guitarist on the list by some distance. His rhythm guitar is pretty unique as well with awesome timing and funkiness. Notable strange positioning are Rory so far down (Johnny Ramone 9 places above – WTF?). Beck has probably a fair claim to being the best living guitarist. Where is Bert Jansch? And if you don’t actually play the guitar it’s pretty difficult to credibly comment on whether one guitarist is better than another.

  503. Doc

    February 26, 2018 at 3:31 am

    MIck Taylor—very underrated. Keif—–way overrated, along with Page. Ramone? Oh please. Love the Floyd, but Gilmour is also overrated. All these lists are just nonsense anyways, although they always generate heated debates…………

  504. Mick Adams

    February 26, 2018 at 12:14 pm

    Keith Richards number five, are you fucking joking…

  505. Blackman

    February 28, 2018 at 4:24 pm

    Michael Schenker not in the list ? Are you kidding ?

  506. Barry Wolfe

    February 28, 2018 at 4:52 pm

    Music ability and great guitar work and a body of music success Elliott Randall should be on the list

  507. John H

    February 28, 2018 at 4:58 pm

    I have to disagree. I have heard many a great rock guitarist turn their hand to other styles and acoustic. Joe Bonamassa can play anything – he can distort with best (Black Country communion) and play acoustic brilliance or blues or swing or whatever. But so can many and I heard Alice Cooper (who has worked with some great guitarists) say that Alex Lifeson could play any style and play anything you asked him to.

  508. Michel CHAURAND

    February 28, 2018 at 5:47 pm

    Toujours oubliait et c’est vraiment une injustice: Terry KATH magistral guitariste de CHICAGO. Manque aussi dans cette liste Randy CALIFORNIA de SPIRIT. Amicalement. Michel

  509. Jeff

    February 28, 2018 at 7:05 pm

    How about George thoroughgood

  510. Craig

    February 28, 2018 at 8:21 pm

    And what about Michael Schenker?

  511. Bill Murray

    February 28, 2018 at 9:12 pm

    Duane Eddy by far is the greatest ever.

  512. Mark

    February 28, 2018 at 9:49 pm

    agreed He is the best Living guitarist Trower should be there also Joe Bonnamassa

  513. José

    March 1, 2018 at 6:05 am

    Ronnie Wood?
    Mark Farner?
    Roy Buchanan?

  514. Carlo C

    March 1, 2018 at 10:22 am

    Who drew up this list?! A deaf, dumb and blind kid?!

  515. Luke

    March 1, 2018 at 5:32 pm

    I will be much happier with this site when Kim Simmonds is included in the list.

  516. Lino Terlati

    March 1, 2018 at 7:45 pm

    50 best guitarists without Todd Rundgren?Silly list

  517. Jon Nestby

    March 2, 2018 at 3:48 pm

    I´d like to include Leslie West and his performance of Dreams of Milk and Hony / Roll over Beethoven, released on Mountain «Flowers of Evil». A true Masterpies!

  518. Jon Nestby

    March 2, 2018 at 4:07 pm

    Leslie West should not be forgotten!

  519. Duane Stickney

    March 9, 2018 at 8:19 pm

    Yeah this is lame, Johnny Winter is # 47 WTH!!

  520. Duane Stickney

    March 9, 2018 at 8:21 pm

    Johnny Winter is #47 Lame, this thing is B.S.

  521. Bob

    March 10, 2018 at 10:26 pm

    Where is Terry Kath? Mick Taylor should be in the top 20. Even Keith called him a “ fucking virtuoso” sheesh Did I not see Prince ?

  522. Ian G

    March 11, 2018 at 6:06 pm

    Oh, deary me, Hendrix? Who got the Rotate Right button and clicked it right? Twice!

  523. Mohamed

    March 11, 2018 at 7:55 pm

    What’s going on ?, how Richie blakmoore and Marknofler in the positions 29 and 17, they should be in the top two, this is unfair

  524. Jack

    March 11, 2018 at 9:38 pm

    Where is Robin Trower? Tommy Bolin?

  525. Matt

    March 11, 2018 at 10:19 pm

    Alvin Lee ????????

  526. Stephen

    March 15, 2018 at 4:21 am

    Alvin Lee is mentioned a lot, but not Albert Lee who Eric Clapton calls the best guitarist!


    March 27, 2018 at 7:32 pm

    Sorry, but i did not see one of the most important one, Hendrix´s mate , RANDY CALIFORNIA…, where is Terry kath, from CTA,

  528. Robert Tew

    March 28, 2018 at 9:59 am

    Why no Roy Buchanan….ap.palling

  529. Hugo Kruijt

    March 30, 2018 at 2:06 am

    Prince?!?!?! Jan Akkerman?!?!?! Joe Bonamassa?!?!? Al Di Meola?!?!?! Larry Coryell?!?!?! Just to mention a few…….

    No, it’s Keith Richard in the top 10, hahahaha. And Mick Taylor nr 48, hahahaha.

  530. Theo

    April 3, 2018 at 4:42 pm

    Marc Bolan? 😉

  531. billy

    April 7, 2018 at 2:38 pm

    don’t forget Danny Gatton.

  532. griff

    April 8, 2018 at 10:36 am

    Lists of 100 work great until you get out of the 80’s. Then it’s just not enough room. Prince, Gilmour, Angus Young, Richie Blackmore, Gary Moore, Fast Eddie Clarke, and the list could go on for another 100…nice to think about but invariably deserving people get left off every time…

  533. Steve D

    April 10, 2018 at 6:02 pm

    Maybe he won’t make your version of the list, but for MANY years, Buddy Whittington played blues guitar for Mayall, and he can stand proudly with the other Guitar Gods that John Mayall introduced to the world. How he plays so well with those stumpy fingers is beyond me.

  534. Gregory

    April 21, 2018 at 6:21 am

    Absolutely agree with Trower, always seems to be forgotten, strange, also no Michael Schenker?

  535. John Post

    April 23, 2018 at 7:07 am

    Tommy Emmanuel – I was fortunate to be in-house security for this guy in a 300 seat dinner style venue with signing after the show. One of the best performances I have ever witnessed. He is a great guy too. Thank you tommy.

  536. Karstein Martinsen

    April 30, 2018 at 3:53 pm

    Jeff Back and Kath in Chicago

    • Karstein Martinsen

      April 30, 2018 at 3:59 pm

      Jeff Back and Terry Kath, Chicago


    May 2, 2018 at 9:39 pm

    Now THAT’S a good question.


    May 2, 2018 at 9:45 pm

    The biggest single controversy here is what to do with Jimi. In my mind, when I make up my Best Guitarist List, I just set him aside in a class all his own. It is hard to compare him with anybody else. I like something SRV said. He said, “I have now figured out how Jimi made all those sounds, but I will never figure out how he came up with the ideas.” (paraphrased).

  539. Hubert Satheesh

    May 5, 2018 at 6:32 pm

    Absolutely. I second you. There’s none who comes even close to gilmour. His solos are surreal.

  540. Ed

    July 20, 2018 at 9:20 pm

    Umm..Steve Hillage, Phil Miller, Chris Poland, John Petrucci, John McLaughlin, Al DiMeola, Bill Nelson, Leslie West..I realize these lists are all quite subjective, but maybe top 500..? Also, The Edge?? Really??!!

  541. Robert Moehle

    July 27, 2018 at 9:58 pm

    I know somebody who SHOULDN’T be on this list – Eric Clapton! Yeah, I know all about the “Clapton is God” thing, and it’s pure B.S.! Clapton is DERIVATIVE, copping licks from everyone who went before him. Clapton plays a lot of “blues,” but he doesn’t have anywhere near the fiery originality that most of the African American bluesmen have. A critic once said, and I agree: “Eric Clapton knows every blues cliche that has ever been played!”

  542. Carl broom

    August 6, 2018 at 6:42 am

    This is moronic list alvin lee should be in top 10 you milineals need to listen to a real master.sorry Stevie Ray this man smoked

  543. Kirk Higbee

    August 19, 2018 at 7:41 pm

    Slash needs to be ranked much higher on this list.

  544. spaski

    October 26, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    Jan Akkerman greatest guitarist in 1973 of the world won’t like this,is going to be really pissed,o,no he is intelligent enough to don’t give a F**K.Jimi is on his rightful spot at least.

  545. Todd

    January 2, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    THE EDGE is one of the the most awsome guitarist EVER. HE makes the best guitar music for the Best band of ALL TIME and he doesnt even play play a 7 string guitar! But he definate GREATEST player in history is ERIC CLAPTON. CLAPTON can play any kind of music an he can play faster than even any heavy metal guitarists he just doesn’t do it all the time because he is HUMBLE and mainly a blues master but nobody can play more complicated scales than him he also is the best original song writer since everything he plays he WROTE HIMSELF and he has been playing for 60 years and hes still sso original, powerful, awesome on stage and off cuzhe is a TRUE guitar God who can even sing amazing voice while playing at he same time nuff said!

    • JD

      January 2, 2019 at 8:21 pm

      I apologize for having written the above post. While it seemed like a funny thing to do at the time, it was a rather distasteful attempt to drive home the absurdity of compiling a list that ranks different people as being better than or worse than one another. Neither The Edge nor Eric Clapton are favorites of mine. I could explain why while also naming some musicians that I think are terrific and worthy of great praise but at the end of the day doing so would be nothing more than stating another opinion. Just because it happens to be mine does not make it any more or less valid than anyone else’s. If this list accomplishes nothing else, it proves that art is ultimately and undeniably subjective. Perhaps I could appreciate the fact that the vast array of existing artistic uniqueness means that there will always be something for somebody. Not for reasons of better than or worse than. Just different. If it’s special and meaningful to you, run with it. Thanks for reading. (By the way, if you dig modern day blues and hard rock guitarists, check out Eric Gales. My Man!).

  546. Christop Hughes

    January 11, 2019 at 10:31 pm

    Top 10… 1.Eric Clapton 2.Jimi Hendrix 3.Stevie Ray Vaughn 4.Duane Allman 5.David Gilmour 6.Slash 7.Muddy Waters 8.Albert King 9.BB King and 10.Jimmy Page

    Next 10… 11.Chuck Berry 12.Freddy King 13.Don Felder 14.Eddie Van Halen 15.George Harrison 16.Prince 17.Billy Gibbons 18.Robert Johnson 19.Brian May and 20.Angus Young

  547. Juan

    January 20, 2019 at 3:50 am

    No Steve Morse ?? Considering a rock list …..

  548. Emkay

    April 2, 2019 at 5:59 pm

    You can’t read…. Fool

  549. Steve

    May 2, 2019 at 5:28 am

    Or Roy Buchanan!!!

  550. The Boz

    June 9, 2019 at 7:55 pm

    There was a guy in the 60s and 70s who was pretty good. Terry Kath. Supposedly Hendrix was quoted. I know I am good but this cat blows me away

  551. Doug

    June 27, 2019 at 6:30 pm

    Eddy Marron!

  552. Armando Chavez

    September 4, 2019 at 8:47 pm

    Wow what imbecile puts Keith richards above Trower,SRV, PatTravers, M Shenker?
    Who is next as greatest? Janet Jackson, J beivor? Hendrix top dog?
    Dude do your research. Do some research first before making a jackass out of yourselves. Give the true innovators not the would be”s the respect they deserve.

  553. Scott

    September 5, 2019 at 12:23 pm

    Duane is #12 on the list…agree he should be higher.

  554. Marios Pavlou

    September 5, 2019 at 5:44 pm

    No Tony Iommi the king of Riff? No Gilmour no Segovia and John Williams?


    September 7, 2019 at 5:02 am


  556. Luis Pirato

    September 7, 2019 at 6:01 pm

    Horrible list!

  557. René Dijkgraaf

    September 8, 2019 at 2:46 am

    I miss Erwin Java, the greatest blues guitarist of all time. Played in Cuby and the Blizzards and presently in King of the World.

  558. SunofSaturn

    September 8, 2019 at 4:18 am

    Having Slash on this list over Robin Trower, Peter Frampton, Peter Green, Freddy and Albert King, and Leslie West is a crime against nature.

  559. Frank Stevens

    September 11, 2019 at 5:24 pm

    I can’t believe Alvin Lee / Ten Years After wasn’t even mentioned.

  560. Zman

    September 27, 2019 at 5:03 am

    I can see Top 50 does not do any justice. My suggestion is to come up with “The ultimate Top 100 best guitar player in the world” covering every genre!

  561. Jason

    September 28, 2019 at 11:22 pm

    No Andy Summers or the Police or Steve Lukathwr of Toto? This list is highly flawed especially without Summers!!

  562. Brian Heatley

    October 7, 2019 at 2:33 pm

    Wot no Alvin Lee,Martin barre,Gary Moore, trower,wood,shocking list.

  563. Vinnie

    October 13, 2019 at 7:01 pm

    This list is seriously flawed. So many obvious choices nowhere to be seen. Ask Eddie VanHalen who he told Rolling Stone was the best guitarist in the world. He said…”Steve Lukather”. This list is an insult.

  564. John Auston

    October 19, 2019 at 7:31 pm

    how’s about the mostly forgotten,underrated Roy Buchanan???

  565. Mark

    November 3, 2019 at 11:10 am

    Uh….Robbie Krieger?

  566. cliff osmond

    November 3, 2019 at 9:40 pm

    randy bauchman of bto great on the trings

  567. Richard 9 Michalak

    December 1, 2019 at 1:26 am

    You1 left out the guy who eraced the line between blues and Rock Johnny Winter should be at the top of the list


    December 29, 2019 at 8:25 pm

    and a list without Roy Buchanan is worthless. Sweet Dreams.

  569. Bob Cerminaro

    October 19, 2020 at 3:46 am

    A ‘Best’ Guitarist list without ‘Todd Rundgren’ on it. Are You kidding me?

  570. Bob Cerminaro

    October 19, 2020 at 3:55 am

    ‘Here’s some of the ‘Best’ Guitar playing ever right here, by ‘Todd Rundgren’!

  571. Michael Rodifer

    October 20, 2020 at 10:56 pm

    Clearly, the comments show a number of things:
    – Many people seem to be permanently pissed off;
    – A ranked list as small as 50 is always going to be inadequate;
    – A ridiculously high percentage of posters have abysmal reading comprehension;
    – A headline that states “best in music” (WAY too broad of a claim) is bound to rile people up, especially when the list fails to represent all genres;
    – Pissing matches like these do nothing to celebrate music or advance happy discussions.

    Maybe I’m an optimist, but I think that if the headline avoided the comparative aspect and read simply “50 Legendary Guitarists You Need to Know”, the discussions might lean toward the “Hey, here’s another one you should check out” rather than the playground “my guy’s better than yours” crap. I encountered a couple of names I want to check out in this list, in fact — which, to me, is the best part of talking about music.

    I’ll finish with a “check him out” recommendation of a player who makes no lists that I’ve seen: the late Ollie Halsall. Apart from fine work with Timebox,Patto and Boxer, he was the guitarist for a fierce three-piece called Tempest which was led by the great Jon Hiseman’s drums. When he left Tempest, the only suitable replacement turned out to be Allan Holdsworth. Worth a look! Chaka!

  572. David

    December 18, 2020 at 9:24 am

    Erik johnson

  573. Ronald Meade

    January 2, 2021 at 12:32 am

    Another not listed….the late Irish guitarist… Gary Moore ! Check out… Still got the blues..or Parisienne Walkways !

  574. Doug

    February 20, 2021 at 4:17 pm

    Any list that doesn’t include George Kooymans isn’t even a valid list.

  575. Marco

    July 27, 2021 at 8:29 am

    Jose Feliciano
    merit to be at top of this charts,
    sure who a wrote this don’t know what great guitarist/artist he is

  576. charlie wood

    August 11, 2021 at 10:48 am

    Gary Moore, Terry Kath of Chicago and Jan Akkerman of Focus. Leslie West of Mountain, Robby Robertson of the Band. Mark Knopfler of Dire Straits. Rory Gallagher of Taste.

  577. charlie wood

    August 11, 2021 at 10:58 am

    Didn’t notice already had Mark Knopfler , just adding Lowell George and Paul Barrere of Little Feat.

  578. Kevin Brown

    August 11, 2021 at 11:17 am

    Half the players would not even be playing the guitar if it were not for the influence of the likes of Paul Kossoff who is NEVER on these silly silly lists, neither does Leslie West for that matter.
    No John Martyn, Nick Drake the list is a joke it has to be BECAUSE The Edge is listed……give me a break he’s useless without all his gadgets hidden below the stage.

  579. Mark Moss

    August 12, 2021 at 3:38 am

    Jeff Beck never gets enough respect. He plays every genre and makes his guitar sing. Also where’s Roy Buchanan, Alvin Lee and Johnny Winter.

  580. Lowell

    August 12, 2021 at 11:52 am

    Fun list, but always subjective. I’d have to add Larry Carlton, Denny Dias and Skunk Baxter. Also, John Mayer, come on, man! He’s the real deal. Al DiMeola, Jorma Kaukonen,. Many deadly-skilled unknowns, of course, like Nathan Salsburg.

  581. Bluefish123

    August 25, 2021 at 12:55 am

    No Jerry Garcia? Who are you kidding?

  582. Tim

    October 4, 2021 at 1:33 pm

    How about John Frusciante from RHCP, THE BEST GUITARIST IN THE LAST 25 years! He is not even listed and should be in the top 10. He plays Jimi better then JIMI! Also Tom Morrello right behind John and slash should be unlisted!

  583. Rodney Enriquez

    October 28, 2021 at 10:31 am

    Brian Setzer
    Danny Gatton
    Alvin Lee

    These guys for sure belong on the list.

    Two others, less well known, a bit out of left field but amazing players:
    Jalloul “Chico” Bouchikhi from the Gipsy Kings
    Kenny Vaughan from Billy Burnette’s band

  584. David Jude

    February 19, 2022 at 8:20 am

    That you don’t include Martin Barre formerly of Jethro Tull and for 50 years consistently playing brilliantly is a disgrace . At 75 he still plays brilliantly

  585. Tom

    March 13, 2022 at 5:22 am

    That there is even a discussion on the 100 best or 50 best guitarist, shows most of you don’t know what you’re talking about. It’s all a bunch of juvenile BS.

    But some comments here seem to show people understand this to some degree.

    There are all different styles of guitar. There is no way Jimi Hendrix would be able to play guitar like any of your well-known classical guitarist. Classical guitarist aren’t going to be able to play like Jimi Hendrix. There are some extremely technically/artistically excellent finger style acoustic Blues guitarist that none of your household name Blues/Rock, Blues guitarist heroes play anywhere close to as good.

    Rolling Stone Magazine’s list of the hundred best, fifty best guitarist, or whatever, doesn’t know what it’s talking about.

    We can say I like that guitarist’s tone and style the best. I like that guitarist phrasing the best. Yeah, I’ll go along with that; but it’s all personal preference.
    Charisma also figures into this. Some people just are drawn to certain artist’s charisma and so they name them as the best guitarist. But it’s really the charisma they’re attracted to.

    The only way to use “best” in the same sentence as guitarist is the “best versatile guitarist”. Now you might have something there. A guitarist who can play the most styles of guitar technically the best, with the most likeable artistic flair.

    All of what’s commented here applies to other instruments as well.

  586. Jess

    May 8, 2022 at 6:50 am

    Thank you for including Sister Rosetta Tharpe and George Benson, unlike the cirlcle jerk Rolling Stone List. Both lists forgot one of the best of all time though: Big Bill Broonzy

  587. Anthony La Morte

    August 28, 2022 at 12:50 pm

    Where is Buckingham and Betts?

  588. james

    January 13, 2023 at 5:05 am

    This list sys it all when you have kurt cobain on it what a joke

  589. Phillip

    April 21, 2023 at 8:10 pm

    No Steve Lukather? Kind of makes the list loose credibility.

  590. Sebastian Baca

    April 28, 2023 at 9:40 pm

    Where are Alvin Lee, Mike Bloomfield, Terry Kath & Roy Buchanan? They belong here! Did I miss Rick Derringer & Johnny Winter here too?

  591. Mike D.

    May 9, 2023 at 2:35 pm

    I was just listening to Concrete Blond and was a little surprised James Mankey wasn’t on this list.

  592. Vincent Ward

    May 17, 2023 at 10:36 am

    Any list of great guitarists without Joe Pass AT ALL, let alone in the top 5, is a bullshit list!

  593. Mare

    June 11, 2023 at 5:56 am

    How are Robert cray, Edgar and Johnny winter, Brian Jones and Rick derringer not listed yet lesser talented guitarists are??

  594. Greg Lamm

    June 21, 2023 at 4:46 am

    My list includes T-Bone Walker, Elmore James, Grady Martin, Doc Watson, Don Rich, Kenny Vaughan, Marty Stuart, Willie Nelson, J.J. Cale, Joni Mitchell. All often are snubbed on virtually every greatest guitarists of all time list that leans heavily into so-called predictable “rock gods.” But the biggest snub is definitely T-Bone Walker. No excuse for omitting him.

  595. Greg Lamm

    June 21, 2023 at 4:49 am

    Forgot to add Maybelle Carter. She also is on my list, but unfortunately not on this one.

  596. bob smith

    July 5, 2023 at 7:08 pm

    Mick Taylor carried the water for the stones during their most prolific and powerful period between ’69 and ’75. the tall guy in back not doing a lot for stage presence played all those blues runs and demonic vibrato you hear; sure didn’t come from the guys prancing up front. after he left the “greatest rock and roll band in the world” became tired “start me up” recycled filler

  597. bob smith

    July 5, 2023 at 7:14 pm

    after reading my fellow commenters i think the general conclusion has to be: this list is crap

  598. James Holderegger

    July 9, 2023 at 12:35 pm

    I can’t believe Robin Trower is not on the list! C’mon he’s still rocking it in his 80’s The man never got his true place in stardom and it appears still doesn’t. One of the hardest-working guitarist who still loves his craft and get standing ovations at his concerts. The old man rules.

  599. david

    July 26, 2023 at 10:22 pm

    What a joke…Eddie Hazel is included, I believe #29. Have you seen and heard the funkadelic guitars live. Maybe this is the wrong list for what I’m thinking, but Funkadelic live would smoke any of the guitar plyers on this list. Michael Hampton, Dwayne McNight along with Eddie Hazel would destroy anyone on this list. Cosmic Slop, Red hot momma, alice in my fantasies, super stupid, Maggot brain…the list goes on and on…

  600. Ron Siewert

    August 1, 2023 at 6:42 pm


  601. Paul

    August 2, 2023 at 11:48 pm

    What about Terry Kath from Chicago.
    Jimi Hendrix considered Terry one of
    the best guitar players he ever heard.

  602. Mickey mantell

    September 8, 2023 at 4:46 pm

    Hendrix was a joke, so bad and limited he had to do idiotic stu ts when he ran out of ideas, he knew the pentatonic scale and nothing else, he wouldn’t make my top 1 million list.
    I do want to mention Jon Jorgenson, I dont think he is mentioned here, he can play anything..

  603. Melinda

    October 20, 2023 at 4:16 pm

    What about Roy Clark? He was stupendous on the guitar and banjo!

  604. Kathy

    October 22, 2023 at 9:46 pm

    I agree with most of your choices, although I would move Warren Haynes up the list toward one and I would say Kenny Wayne Shepard.

  605. Wes

    November 9, 2023 at 12:39 pm

    Joe Bonamassa. Where is he?g

  606. Tom Hooper

    November 22, 2023 at 8:56 pm

    No Roy Clark??? No Tommy Emmanuel??
    You don’t really have a very good understanding.

  607. Archon

    November 23, 2023 at 10:15 am


  608. Marilyn

    January 12, 2024 at 4:06 pm

    Chicagos Terry Kath is top 10 to me. I know he died young , But that Certainly shouldn’t keep him out. Hendrix once commented that Terry Kath was better than himself. He didn’t have his own band so he wasn’t out front constantly, but when Chicago put him there, he was awesome! So is his background playing. Listen to him. There’s certainly not 75 better. If he had his own band he would have been up there with Hendrix..

  609. Steve

    January 19, 2024 at 1:40 pm

    List lost all credibility just putting Kurt Cobain on there. Him above Angus Young is a joke. And where is Eric Johnson? Way too many fantastic guitarists left out but putting Kurt on there? Author knows nothing about guitarists.

  610. hmc12874

    January 25, 2024 at 1:03 am

    Adam Jones should be on that list.

  611. Paul Walters

    January 31, 2024 at 5:24 pm

    This is the stupidest most useless list I have ever seen. Kurt cobain? Kristin hersh? Omg. Yes they should be on here but let’s leave off everyone from Allan holdsworth, frank gambale, Pat Martino, Jason Becker, Shawn lane, Eric Johnson, Danny Gatton, Steve Lukather, Joe bonamassa, Barney Kessel, Tommy Emmanuel (pound for pound probably the single greatest player on earth from a versatility standpoint) and about 50 other people who are true virtuosos. Is it the “best”? Is it “most influential”? It’s just a Random list of guitar players that are famous. Being able to play seems not to be a factor. And will people PLEASE STOP all this crap about prince? He was a decent guitar player, but generally no better than anyone who is the best guitar player of their high school class. He was NOT a serious guitar player any more than John Lennon was. Influential artists beyond measure to be sure, but have no place on a “best guitarist “ list. What a waste of time.

  612. Knut Onstad

    February 17, 2024 at 11:16 pm

    I would like to mention the selfmade russian guitar-genious Enver Izmaylov.
    Not a commercial famous guy, but played anything, in ways I have never seen or heard any other guitarist do.

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