guitarists The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams  

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List Rules Only metal guitarist or guitar tandems. Guitarists from other genres shouldn't be included on here

List of the greatest metal guitarists of all time, with photos. Clearly, the list contains a broad selection of guitarists who can still be classified as "metal," though some of the featured guitarists predate the period in which "heavy metal" was enjoying mainstream, popular success. It also includes guitarists such as Brian May and Jimi Hendrix who are not typically referred to as "metal guitarists" as their primary genre – but their guitar sounds were actually highly influential in early heavy metal music.

Who are the best metal guitarists of all time? Which musicians shredded the hardest on their guitars? The list also notably contains memorable duos or guitar groups, as line-ups featuring multiple guitarists who compliment one another is such a fixture of the metal genre. Guitarists who are featured as part of a group (such as Megadeth's Dave Mustaine and Marty Friedman or KISS's Ace Frehley and Paul Stanley) should not be listed individually except in rare circumstances where that guitarist had notable success and a specific style while playing solo as well as with a metal group. If you can think of anyone who would be in your personal top 100, then definitely add them to this list. 
list ordered by

1
+ - 2,997 1,220
Randy Rhoads is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Randy Rhoads Glam metal, Heavy metal, Neo-classical metal

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2
+ - 2,592 1,503
Eddie Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Eddie Van Halen Popular music, Pop music, Rock music

3
+ - 2,748 984
Tony Iommi is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Tony Iommi Doom metal, Blues-rock, Heavy metal

4
+ - 2,453 1,323
Jimmy Page is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Jimmy Page Blues-rock, Folk rock, Heavy metal

5
+ - 2,124 1,125
Ritchie Blackmore is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Ritchie Blackmore Rock music, Heavy metal, Neo-Medieval music

6
+ - 2,635 1,283
Jimi Hendrix is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Jimi Hendrix Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

7
+ - 2,779 1,402
Dimebag Darrell is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Dimebag Darrell Glam metal, Thrash metal, Groove metal

8
+ - 1,750 1,057
Steve Vai is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Steve Vai Progressive metal, Experimental rock, Instrumental rock

9
+ - 1,923 1,414
Slash is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Slash Glam metal, Blues-rock, Heavy metal

10
+ - 1,725 1,169
Yngwie Malmsteen is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Yngwie Malmsteen Glam metal, Progressive metal, Instrumental rock

11
+ - 2,192 1,394
Kirk Hammett & James Hetfield is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Kirk Hammett & James Hetfield

12
+ - 2,650 1,305
Dave Mustaine & Marty Friedman is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Dave Mustaine & Marty Friedman

13
+ - 1,778 917
Glen Tipton & K.K. Downing is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Glen Tipton & K.K. Downing

14
+ - 1,759 1,241
Angus & Malcolm Young is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Angus & Malcolm Young

15
+ - 1,759 947
Joe Satriani is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Joe Satriani Rock music, Instrumental rock, Heavy metal

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16
+ - 1,869 1,048
Zakk Wylde is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Zakk Wylde Groove metal, Heavy metal, Southern rock

17
+ - 1,587 1,015
Brian May is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Brian May Rock music, Heavy metal, Pop rock

18
+ - 1,958 859
Dave Murray & Adrian Smith is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Dave Murray & Adrian Smith

19
+ - 2,057 935
Dave Mustaine is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Dave Mustaine Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Heavy metal

20
+ - 1,125 883
Michael Schenker is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Michael Schenker Heavy metal, Hard rock

21
+ - 1,259 1,076
Eric Clapton is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Eric Clapton Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae

22
+ - 1,408 821
John Petrucci is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
John Petrucci Progressive metal, Instrumental rock, Jazz fusion

23
+ - 1,005 891
Alex Lifeson is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Alex Lifeson Heavy metal, Progressive rock, Hard rock

24
+ - 1,342 1,177
Kirk Hammett is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Kirk Hammett Thrash metal, Heavy metal, Speed metal

25
+ - 867 890
Jeff Beck is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Jeff Beck Blues-rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock

26
+ - 1,890 254
Jeff Waters is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Jeff Waters Heavy metal thrash metal - guitarist founder writer vocalist for ANNIHILATOR. One of the most under-rated and influential guitarists and writers in heavy/thrash metal.  Interesting to note that North American guitar magazines and press do not report ...

27
+ - 974 636
David Gilmour is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
David Gilmour Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock

28
+ - 819 833
George Lynch is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
George Lynch Glam metal, Blues-rock, Rock music

29
+ - 1,107 908
Chuck Schuldiner is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Chuck Schuldiner Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Technical death metal

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30
+ - 835 732
Jake E. Lee is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Jake E. Lee Blues-rock, Rock music, Heavy metal

31
+ - 721 803
Rudolf Schenker & Uli John Rot... is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Rudolf Schenker & Uli John Roth

32
+ - 1,193 841
Kerry King & Jeff Hanneman is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Kerry King & Jeff Hanneman

33
+ - 925 836
Carlos Santana is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Carlos Santana Blues-rock, Chicano rock, Pop music

34
+ - 642 771
Vivian Campbell is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Vivian Campbell Glam metal, New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Blues-rock

35
+ - 821 739
Paul Gilbert is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Paul Gilbert Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Instrumental rock

36
+ - 771 1,090
Ted Nugent is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Ted Nugent Blues-rock, Rock music, Heavy metal

37
+ - 519 302
Stevie Ray Vaughan is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Stevie Ray Vaughan Blues-rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock

38
+ - 794 280
Adrian Smith & Dave Murray is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Adrian Smith & Dave Murray Heavy metal, progressive metal, power metal

39
+ - 469 291
K. K. Downing is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
K. K. Downing Rock music, Power metal, Heavy metal

40
+ - 998 432
Criss Oliva is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Criss Oliva Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Power metal

41
+ - 738 947
Ace Frehley & Paul Stanley is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Ace Frehley & Paul Stanley

42
+ - 726 694
Jason Becker is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Jason Becker Instrumental rock, Heavy metal, Neo-classical metal

43
+ - 618 814
Pete Townshend is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Pete Townshend Rock music, Pop rock, Merseybeat

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44
+ - 327 313
Billy Gibbons is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Billy Gibbons Blues-rock, Pop music, Boogie rock

45
+ - 519 723
Mick Mars is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Mick Mars Glam metal, Rock music, Heavy metal

46
+ - 979 365
Chris Caffery is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Chris Caffery Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Power metal

47
+ - 528 204
Adrian Smith is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Adrian Smith Heavy metal, Progressive rock, Hard rock

48
+ - 521 741
Joe Perry & Brad Whitford is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Joe Perry & Brad Whitford

49
+ - 740 630
Alex Skolnick & Eric Peterson is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Alex Skolnick & Eric Peterson

50
+ - 476 134
Marty Friedman is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Marty Friedman Glam metal, J-pop, Heavy metal