The Top 10 Guitarists Of All Time

Videos by American Songwriter

For the second time in a decade, Rolling Stone has compiled a list of the world’s greatest guitarists.

This time, instead of asking critics to do it, they relied largely on a panel of the world’s greatest guitarists — including Trey Anastasio, Dan Auerbach of the Black Keys, Thurston Moore, Rush’s Alex Lifeson, Albert Hammond Jr. of The Strokes, Warren Haynes, Built to Spills’ Doug Martsch, and many more. It’s a list where Mark Knopfler is a slightly better guitarist than Jerry Garcia, and Willie Nelson and Buddy Holly both get their due.

The bad news? No one nominated Anastasio, one of the best guitarists of his generation. Oh well. There’s always next time.

Here’s the Top 10:

1. Jimi Hendrix

2. Eric Clapton

3. Jimmi Page

4. Keith Richards

5. Jeff Beck

6. B.B. King

7. Chuck Berry

8. Eddie Van Halen

9. Duane Allman

10. Pete Townshend

Read the rest of the list here. What would your top ten look like? Let us know in the comments.


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  1. Allan Holdsworth, Joe Satriani, Steve Vai and Steve Morse?!
    FOR JAZZ: Wes Montgomery, Django Reinhardt, Joe Pass, Pat Metheny, Philip Catherine and Chuck Wayne?

  2. Django Reinhardt, Robin Nolan and Frank Vignola were/are gypsy jazz guitarists.
    To get an idea of what a true pure gypsy jazz song sounds like, Youtube: THE CHRIS NOWAK PROJECT Vol. 1, 2 or 3 (2 is the best) and click on HUNGARIAN GYPSY BLUES.
    Try to imagine how a guitar can enhance the song.

  3. Where the heck are Ritchie Blackmore and Stevie Ray Vaughn? The Stones are my absolute favorite band of all time, but Keith Richards shouldn’t be on the list. If I had to pick a Stone it would be Mick Taylor, but still, not top 10.

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