The musical mechanism that they choose to be very good at, is one of the most difficult instruments to learn. Being a very good guitarist takes a lot of talent and not to mention tens of thousands of practice hours. This fact can make us conclude that these guys have the persistence and naturalism that most ordinary people doesn’t possess. Who do you think among these ax elites is the best at strumming and riffing? Who do you think is the best guitarist of all time?
Rolling Stone magazine describes him as “the pontiff of power riffing” and ranked him number 3 in their list of the “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time”. This should be enough to convince everyone that his hands are really too powerful that it can mesmerize musicians and non-musicians alike. Furthermore, he has been described by Uncut, also a distinguished award-giving body as “rock’s greatest and most mysterious guitar hero.” To rock music fans however, he is not too mysterious anymore, because he is internationally successful as the guitarist and founder of the rock band Led Zeppelin.
Born: January 9, 1944
From: Heston, Middlesex, UK
Genres: rock, blues, folk, hard rock, heavy metal
Years active: 1957–present
Most recognized for: Stairway To Heaven
He has received great amounts of recognitions in his career as the lead guitarist of Guns N’ Roses – one of the most popular bands of the late 80’s and probably in the history of music. Such recognitions include the ones given by Time Magazine and Rolling Stone, which placed him as one of the top 10 and within the 100 of the greatest respectively. The roses that accompany the guns may not be as blooming as it was anymore, but Slash is still rocking onstage proving to the world that being a great guitarist can last for many generations.
Born: July 23, 1965
From: Hampstead, London, UK
Genres: heavy metal, hard rock, blues rock
Years active: 1981–present
Most recognized for: Sweet Child o Mine
Very proficient with his craft while being on a band or as a solo artist, Eric Clapton is in fact a very talented fella. Known as an artist who writes a great amount of the songs and tunes that he performs so excellently, he is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He is looked up to by both the young generation and even among his fellow legends which gives him ample referral as one of the most important and influential guitarists of all time.
Born: March 30, 1945
From: Ripley, Surrey, UK
Genres: rock, blues
Years active: 1962–present
Most recognized for: Wonderful Tonight
Having died at the young age of 27, Jimi Hendrix is one of those legends that the world lost a little too early. As an inductee to The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, he is being labeled by the body as “arguably the greatest instrumentalist in the history of rock music.” Although his mainstream career was very short-lived, he is widely acknowledged as one of the most influential guitarists in the history of popular music, and one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th century.
Born: November 27, 1942
Died: September 18, 1970
From: Seattle, Washington, U.S.
Genres: psychedelic rock, hard rock, rhythm and blues
Years active: 1963–1970
Most recognized for: All Along The Watchtower
As the ultimate icon that was the pioneer of rock and Latin American music, this Mexican riffer has a name and renown that is difficult to ignore in the history of music. As a rising star during the 60s and 70s, most younger artists may think of him as yesterday’s news until he dumbfounded them during the early 2000’s, when he rose to prominence again by winning 10 Grammys. Having achieved his reclaim to fame with the work of younger acts, he is still doing his thing on stage, with his guitar as his ultimate weapon.
Born: July 20, 1947
From: San Francisco, United States Genres
Genres: Latin rock, blues rock, jazz fusion
Years active: 1965–present
Most recognized for: Black Magic Woman
He earned the nickname “The King of the Blues,” and was known as a tireless performer throughout his musical career. It has been recorded that he has appeared in more than 200 concerts per year on average, even as he reached his old age. As a recognizable icon in the realm of guitar playing, he introduced a sophisticated style of riffing that would later serve as a major influence for the next generations of blues guitarists: fluid string bending and shimmering vibrato. In blues music, BB is really the King, though he is no longer among the living.
Born: September 16, 1925
Died: May 14, 2015 (aged 89)
From: Berclair, Mississippi, U.S.
Genres: rhythm and blues, blues rock[
Years active: 1948–2015
Most recognized for: How Blue Can You Get
He is regarded as “The Last Guitar Hero” – a tagline that makes him worthy to be called a legend, though it might make younger aspirants a little too jealous and sad. He is known as a multi-instrumentalist, because he is notable as the lead guitarist and occasional keyboardist of the rock band Van Halen. As a result of the stunts that he is fond of while onstage, he has been through many surgeries inasmuch as he amassed many recognitions already in his long-running career, which made him one of the world’s greatest guitarists.
Born: January 26, 1955
From: Nijmegen, Netherlands
Years active: 1964–present
Most recognized for: Jump
Mr. Vaughan was an award-garnering dude who continues to receive plaques and recognitions even after his death. His mode of playing has been legendary in the history of music as he was instrumental to the rekindling of blues during the 80’s. His mainstream career was a short one, but it wasn’t a hindrance in any way to the fact that he is labeled as a “powerhouse of a guitarist” who doesn’t rely too much on effects pedals, but prefers only the clean amplified natural tone of an electric guitar.
Born: October 3, 1954
Died: August 27, 1990
From: Dallas, Texas, USA
Genres: blues rock
Years active: 1965–1990
Most recognized for: Pride and Joy
Having worked in close association with other ax legends like Eric Clapton and Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck may have somehow absorbed the Midas touch of those artists because he became a legend himself. He is often called a “guitarist’s guitarist.” He has already appeared on the cover of Rolling Stone for 3 times already where he was ranked as fifth in its list of “100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time.” Whether in a band or as a solo artist, he is a very proficient musician, as he was inducted into the Rock N’ Roll Hall of Fame in both categories.
Born: June 24, 1944
From: Wallington, Surrey, UK
Genres: blues rock, jazz fusion, instrumental rock, hard rock, electronica, progressive rock
Years active: 1964–present
Most recognized for: Cause We’ve Ended as Lovers
He is a the lead guitarist and founding member of The Rolling Stones – one of the most important bands in the history of rock and of music itself, which should make him a legend by default. This alone doesn’t make him a great guitarist however, it is due to his contribution that’s labeled as “rock’s greatest single body of riffs,” which are evident on the songs that his band was so widely known for. Within the list of the famous magazine who happens to have the same name of his band, Richards‘ name was etched as number 4.
Born: December 18, 1943
From: Dartford, Kent, UK
Genres: rock, blues rock, rhythm and blues
Years active: 1960–present
Most recognized for: Satisfaction
Who among them should be ranked as No. 1?