100 Greatest Guitarists by Rolling Stone

Posted by The Fretwire on

Rolling Stone magazine recently released a list of the Top 100 Guitarists of All Time. I obsessively look at these sorts of lists, normally only to scoff in righteous indignation at the results. Rolling Stone took a different course this time, having other top guitar players rank their favorite players. This made for the least scoffable list I have come across. But of course, we all have our opinions. Here is what I love about this list: 1. John Mayer isn't on it.  Sure he can play, but I am really tired of hearing about him bringing blues to mainstream music as if thats a new thing.  There were some others that did that in the past.  You may have heard of some of them, such as Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Jeff Beck, Jimi Hendrix...  Thank you, Rolling Stone and other prominent guitar players, for recognizing that or unintentionally forgetting about him. 2.  The list was voted on by other guitar players. An inside look is always more interesting. 3.  No Yngwie, Satriani, Vai etc. in the top spots.  Probably because of #2. 4.  Van Halen voted for Clapton.  I have had dozens of conversations over the years about the virtues of each of those players.  Turns out, Van Halen agrees with me! 5.  Numbers 1 and 2 are spot on.  Clapton and Hendrix. 6. On the Rolling Stone website, there was an ad on the side of the list to see a new Shakira video.  I like Shakira videos. Here is what I don't like: 1.  The title.  "Greatest" is really used hear to express "Most Influential".  There are technically brilliant players at the bottom of the list, preceded by players at the top that are influential and innovative, but not really great guitar players. 2. Technically speaking, there was no way online to see the entire list in one view.  If you wanted to see all 100, you had to click through, well, 100 pages.  I honestly don't know who they ranked in spots 80 through 50.  I got tired of clicking. 3.  Stevie Ray Vaughan is #12?! The rank is meaningless, but what has meaning is who is ranked above him.  I like Duane Allman a lot, but more than SRV? I admit Chuck Berry is probably more influential to a wider base, but "Greater" than SRV? What do you think? Any gripes you find on the list?