Rolling Stone's 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time

Inspired by the Roy Clark thread.

Here is the list, which I also pasted below.


I can’t take it seriously. Buck Dharma is one of the greatest lead guitarists ever (IMO), and he’s not even listed. And B.B. King is #6?? He was O.K., but I wouldn’t put him in the top 20. Joni Mitchell and Joe Walsh should be much higher. I love The Ramones, but Johnny shouldn’t even be on the list. Same goes for Kurt Cobain and Lou Reed.

  1. Jimi Hendrix
  2. Eric Clapton
  3. Jimmy Page
  4. Keith Richards
  5. Jeff Beck
  6. B.B. King
  7. Chuck Berry
  8. Eddie Van Halen
  9. Duane Allman
  10. Pete Townshend
  11. George Harrison
  12. Stevie Ray Vaughan
  13. Albert King
  14. David Gilmour
  15. Freddy King
  16. Derek Trucks
  17. Neil Young
  18. Les Paul
  19. James Burton
  20. Carlos Santana
  21. Chet Atkins
  22. Frank Zappa
  23. Buddy Guy
  24. Angus Young
  25. Tony Iommi
  26. Brian May
  27. Bo Diddley
  28. Johnny Ramone
  29. Scotty Moore
  30. Elmore James
  31. Ry Cooder
  32. Billy Gibbons
  33. Prince
  34. Curtis Mayfield
  35. John Lee Hooker
  36. Randy Rhoads
  37. Mick Taylor
  38. The Edge
  39. Steve Cropper
  40. Tom Morello
  41. Mick Ronson
  42. Mike Bloomfield
  43. Hubert Sumlin
  44. Mark Knopfler
  45. Link Wray
  46. Jerry Garcia
  47. Stephen Stills
  48. Jonny Greenwood
  49. Muddy Waters
  50. Ritchie Blackmore
  51. Johnny Marr
  52. Clarence White
  53. Otis Rush
  54. Joe Walsh
  55. John Lennon
  56. Albert Collins
  57. Rory Gallagher
  58. Peter Green
  59. Robbie Robertson
  60. Ron Asheton
  61. Dickey Betts
  62. Robert Fripp
  63. Johnny Winter
  64. Duane Eddy
  65. Slash
  66. Leslie West
  67. T Bone Walker
  68. John McLaughlin
  69. Richard Thompson
  70. Jack White
  71. Robert Johnson
  72. John Frusciante
  73. Kurt Cobain
  74. Dick Dale
  75. Joni Mitchell
  76. Robby Krieger
  77. Willie Nelson
  78. John Farley
  79. Mike Campbell
  80. Buddy Holly
  81. Lou Reed
  82. Nels Cline
  83. Eddie Hazel
  84. Joe Perry
  85. Andy Summers
  86. J Mascis
  87. James Hetfield
  88. Carl Perkins
  89. Bonnie Raitt
  90. Tom Verlaine
  91. Dave Davies
  92. Dimebag Darrell
  93. Paul Simon
  94. Peter Buck
  95. Roger McGuinn
  96. Bruce Springsteen
  97. Steve Jones
  98. Alex Lifeson
  99. Thurston Moore
  100. Lindsey Buckingham

As if I need to be told that Neil Young is a better guitarist than Les Paul…

I’m no guitar expert, just a guy who likes music, but I was surprised that Prince wasn’t higher up on the list.

Well, that list is from 2012…maybe the Rolling Stone staff has changed their minds since then?

Perhaps they could have separate lists for living and dead guitarists. That would free up a spot for Buck Dharma for sure. :smiley:

Should I read it again? I’m pretty sure I didn’t see Steve Hackett’s name!
Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

No Steve Howe, either. List=Garbage

Jimi Hendrix could play guitar? Who knew? I thought he could only yell, scream, and die.

And where’s Andres Segovia? :slight_smile:

It’s just a list of 100 popular and influential popular American music guitarists. For what it is, it’s as reasonable as any other list, IMHO. My list might have Jimi on top, but probably not the rest of the top 10. But nothing strikes me as particularly egregious. OK, I may not agree with Frusciante being only one spot ahead of Cobain, or Johnny Marr being that much lower than The Edge, or Johnny Ramone (God bless him) being on this list at all, but, eh, it works fine for me.

I’ve seen 26 of them live.

My Favorite

I am very clueless, but I thought Buckethead and Prince were top 5 material.

Is Buckethead in the list and I missed him?

31 for me…32 if you add in Buck Dharma :cool:

Indeed. I mean, I know that RS has never really loved progressive rock, but seriously. :stuck_out_tongue:

Only 20 for me. But do I get extra credit for Les Paul and Muddy Waters?

Frank Zappa at #22? Yet Keith Richards is at #4? What the fuck were the criteria?

Eric Johnson? Steve Vai? Joe Satriani? I know for a fact all three were playing guitar prior to 2012.

Terry Kath from Chicago really deserves to be somewhere on that list. Also, I would rank Andrew Latimer of the band Camel as being roughly on the same level as David Gilmour, but he is probably too obscure for them to have even considered him.

My tastes are plebian and tend towards what’s popular, but am a bit surprised not to see Niel Schon or Steve Lukather represented.

Glad to see that Clapton passed the audition.

He belongs there.

Name recognition by non-guitar-players?