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Best Guitarists of all Time

If you take a look at the list of top 10 guitarists of all time, you will nearly always find Jimi Hendrix on the top...
Sometimes you want to give up the guitar, you'll hate the guitar. But if you stick with it, you're gonna be rewarded. - Jimi Hendrix

If you are thinking about the best guitarists of all time, the list would be very big. Choosing the best is certainly very difficult; as every guitar player has his own playing style, techniques, and a particular reputation in a certain music genre. It requires time, dedication and thousands of guitar lessons to master the techniques this awesome musical instrument has to offer. There are many guitar players who have influenced a lot of musicians and artists of today. These guitar maestros have had a substantial impact on the music industry.

Top 10 Guitarists of All Time

Jimi Hendrix
A majority of famous guitar players would agree to the fact that Jimi Hendrix was the most influential guitarist. He has been an influence to talented guitarists like Slash, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Kirk Hammett, George Lynch, Eddie Van Halen, and even masters like Yngwie Malmsteen and Eric Johnson.

Yngwie Malmsteen
Yngwie Malmsteen is a Swedish guitarist who has blended classical music with rock music, using the guitar. He is best-known for guitar solos with awesome scale transforming techniques. Malmsteen is also believed to be one of the fastest guitarists of all time.

John Norum
Yet another Swedish guitarist well-known for his role in the band 'Europe'. He mainly uses Gibson Les Paul and Fender Stratocaster guitars. John Norum is known for giving energetic solos in all the songs performed by the band.

Eric Johnson
If you listen to Eric Johnson's playing style, you'll see that he combines a feel of classical, blues, and instrumental rock music. He commonly uses Fender Stratocaster guitars. Like Yngwie Malmsteen, he is also considered one of the fastest guitar players in the music industry.

Joe Satriani
Joe Satriani is a multi-instrumentalist, a guitar instructor, and also several Grammy awards winner. His music styles include blues rock and instrumental rock. He has been a guitar teacher of respectable guitarists like Steve Vai and Kirk Hammett. He certainly deserves to be in the list of best guitarists of all time.

Doug Aldrich
Music enthusiasts refer Doug Aldrich as the best guitarist for hard rock and blues rock kinda music genre. He is awesome on the stage with his guitar solos, playing techniques, and even body language. He is a noted guitarist of the band 'Whitesnake'.

Reb Beach
Reb Beach is a guitar master in the hard rock and heavy metal genres of music. His primary playing techniques are 'shredding' and 'tapping' which were effectively promoted by Eddie Van Halen. He has used these techniques in many of his solos in records by Winger, Whitesnake, Dokken, and many others.

Steve Vai
Steve Vai is a reputed guitar virtuoso in the instrumental rock and progressive rock music genre. He is most famous for playing with his teeth and using music theories in his guitar playing practicalities. He also uses double and triple neck guitars.

Mark Knopfler
He is a Britisher who is famous for being a lead guitar player of the band 'Dire Straits'. He especially uses the fingerpicking technique which generally includes plucking strings with fingertips or fingernails. He is considered a guitarist who can play lead and rhythm at the same time.

Eric Clapton
A guitar virtuoso in the field of country, blues, and other different types of music. He has been associated with many other artists and musicians like B. B. King, Dire Straits, Paul McCartney, Jeff Beck, and so on. Not only this, he has also received many awards, out of which one includes the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.

Notable Lead and Rhythm Guitarists
  • John Frusciante
  • John Petrucci
  • Steve Morse
  • Bob Hartman
  • Rex Carroll
  • Bryan Adams
  • Zakk Wylde
  • Jimmy Page
  • Lenny Kravitz
  • Mark Tremonti
  • George Lynch
  • Eddie Van Halen
  • John Mayer
  • Slash
  • Richie Sambora
  • Kee Marcello
Notable Bass Guitarists
  • John Leven
  • Stuart Hamm
  • Abraham Laboriel
  • John Myung
  • Billy Sheehan
  • Jeff Pilson
  • Victor Wooten
  • Marco Mendoza
  • Tony Kanal
  • Geddy Lee
  • Duff McKagan
  • Uriah Duffy
  • Michael 'Flea' Balzary
  • Kip Winger
  • Steve Harris
This is a random list of the best guitarists of all time. There are many more guitarists who have attained an honorable level in their guitar playing. If you are well-versed with the basics and want to be really good in guitar playing, it is suggested to listen to these guitarists and imitate their style.
By Stephen Rampur
Published: 6/17/2010
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