Band/Musician The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time

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List Rules The greatest rock, metal, blues and alt rock guitarists to ever play live in a touring band

The best guitarists of all time, voted on and ranked by many music fans, with photos and other info. With help from the wisdom of the crowd, you'll find a comprehensive ranking of the greatest guitar players in history. All the top guitarists are on this list - monster guitar heroes from rock, metal, blues, and alternative music. Are you on Team Eddie or Team Jimi? How about both!

Add your vote to this list of the top guitarists ever and help to pick the best guitar player in the history of music. These roock, jazz, blues guitarists have all had long careers filled with success and failure. Some are still jamming out today, which other rock stars died too young, before their talents could be fully appreciated. Now is your chance to give the best guitar players in the world some recognition.

Who is the best guitarist of all time? Add your vote to make sure your voice is heart!

To vote on more music lists, check out these lists of the Best Rock Vocalists and the Best Female Rock Vocalists of all time.
Collection Photo: user uploaded image
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Jimi Hendrix


Jimi Hendrix is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo: Wikimedia Commons

James Marshall "Jimi" Hendrix was an American guitarist, singer, and songwriter. Although his mainstream career spanned only four years, he is widely regarded as one of the most influential electric guitarists in the history of popular music, and one of the most celebrated musicians of the 20th ...more

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Albums: First Rays of the New Rising Sun, Band of Gypsys, Voodoo Child: The Jimi Hendrix Collection, Live at the Fillmore East Live at Woodstock, + more

Genres (Music): Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock, Psychedelia Heavy metal, + more

Nationality: United States of America

Labels: MCA Records, Vee-Jay Records, Polydor Records, Reprise Records Barclay Records, + more

Career Began: Seattle, Washington, United States of America

Also Ranked

#13 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#52 on The Best Rock Vocalists

#89 on The Best Singers of All Time

#76 on The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

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Jimmy Page


Jimmy Page is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo:  Dana Wullenwaber/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 2.0

James Patrick "Jimmy" Page, OBE is an English musician, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and record producer who achieved international success as the guitarist and leader of the rock band Led Zeppelin. Page began his career as a studio session musician in London and, by the mid-1960s, he had ...more

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Albums: Coverdale/Page, Come With Me, Live at the Greek, Don’t Send Me No Flowers Lucifer Rising and Other Sound Tracks, + more

Genres (Music): Blues-rock, Folk rock, Heavy metal, Rock and roll Jazz, + more

Nationality: England

Labels: Atlantic Records, Geffen Records, Mercury, Fontana Records Swan Song Records

Also Ranked

#133 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#89 on The Best Blues Artists of All Time

#875 on The Worst Bands of All Time

#4 on The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams

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Eric Clapton


Eric Clapton is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo:  Matt Gibbons/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 2.0

Eric Patrick Clapton, CBE, is an English musician, singer-songwriter and guitarist. He is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: once as a solo artist and separately as a member of the Yardbirds and Cream. Clapton has been referred to as one of the most important and ...more

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Albums: 461 Ocean Boulevard, Crossroads, Pilgrim, Journeyman Tears in Heaven, + more

Genres (Music): Blues-rock, Rock music, Reggae, Pop rock Soft rock, + more

Nationality: England

Labels: RSO Records, ATCO Records, Deram Records, Polydor Records Reprise Records, + more

Career Began: London, United Kingdom

Also Ranked

#59 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#35 on The Best Rock Vocalists

#84 on The Best Singers of All Time

#23 on The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

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Stevie Ray Vaughan


Stevie Ray Vaughan is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo:  Joe Bielawa/Flickr/C. BY 2.0

Stephen Ray Vaughan, known as Stevie Ray Vaughan, was an American musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer. In spite of a short-lived mainstream career spanning seven years, he is widely considered one of the most influential electric guitarists in the history of blues music, and one of the ...more

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Albums: Couldn't Stand the Weather, In Step, Texas Flood, The Essential Stevie Ray Vaughan and Double Trouble The Sky Is Crying, + more

Genres (Music): Blues-rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock, Electric blues Jazz fusion, + more

Nationality: United States of America

Labels: Sony Music Entertainment, Epic Records, A&M Records, Legacy Recordings

Career Began: Dallas, Texas, United States of America

Also Ranked

#107 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#101 on The Best Rock Vocalists

#61 on The Greatest Classic Rock Bands

#7 on The Best Blues Artists of All Time

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Eddie Van Halen


Eddie Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo:  Carl Lender/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY 2.0

Edward Lodewijk "Eddie" Van Halen is a Dutch-born American musician, songwriter and producer. He is best known as the lead guitarist, keyboardist and co-founder of the hard rock band Van Halen. He is considered to be one of the world's greatest guitarists, and one of the most influential rock ...more

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Genres (Music): Popular music, Pop music, Rock music, Heavy metal Neo-classical metal, + more

Nationality: Netherlands, Indonesia, United States of America

Labels: Warner Bros. Records

Also Ranked

#2 on The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams

#77 on The Druggiest Rock Stars of All Time

#110 on The Greatest Rock Songwriters of All Time

#59 on 200+ Celebrities Who Went to Rehab

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David Gilmour


David Gilmour is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo:  Klaus Hiltscher/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 2.0

David Jon Gilmour, CBE, is an English musician, singer, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. He is best known for his work as the guitarist and co-lead vocalist of the progressive rock band Pink Floyd. It is estimated that by 2012 the group had sold over 250 million records worldwide, including 75 ...more

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Albums: On an Island, David Gilmour, Remember That Night, About Face Live in Gdańsk, + more

Genres (Music): Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock, Soft rock Progressive rock, + more

Nationality: England

Labels: Sony Records, Harvest Records, EMI, Sony Music Entertainment Columbia, + more

Career Began: Cambridge, United Kingdom

Also Ranked

#145 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#34 on The Best Rock Vocalists

#151 on The Best Singers of All Time

#221 on Musicians Who Belong in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

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21 people just voted on B.B. King


B.B. King is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo:  Heinrich Klaffs/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 2.0

B.B. King is an American blues musician, singer, songwriter, and guitarist. Rolling Stone magazine ranked him at No. 6 on its 2011 list of the 100 greatest guitarists of all time, and he was ranked No. 17 in Gibson's "Top 50 Guitarists of All Time". According to Edward M. Komara, King "introduced a ...more

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Albums: Let the Good Times Roll, Live at the Regal, Ladies and Gentleman... Mr. B.B. King, How Blue Can You Get? Electric Blues, + more

Genres (Music): Blues-rock, Soul blues, Rock music, Memphis blues Electric blues, + more

Nationality: United States of America

Labels: ABC Records, RPM Records, MCA Records, Bullet Records Geffen Records, + more

Career Began: Itta Bena, Mississippi, United States of America

Also Ranked

#78 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#100 on The Best Singers of All Time

#2 on The Best Blues Artists of All Time

#49 on Rank the Rock N Roll Hall of Fame Inductees

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Carlos Santana


Carlos Santana is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Guitarists Of All Time
Photo:  Heinrich Klaffs/Wikimedia Commons/CC BY-SA 2.0

Carlos Santana audio is a Mexican and American musician who first became famous in the late 1960s and early 1970s with his band, Santana, which pioneered a fusion of rock and Latin American music. The band's sound featured his melodic, blues-based guitar lines set against Latin and African rhythms ...more

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Albums: Legacy Edition, Eat at Whitey's, The Live Adventures of Mike Bloomfield and Al Kooper, Legendary Latin Rock Tracks Bring 'Em In, + more

Genres (Music): Blues-rock, Chicano rock, Pop music, Rock music Garage rock, + more

Nationality: United States of America, Mexico

Labels: Polydor Records, Arista Records, PolyGram, Columbia RCA Records

Career Began: California, United States of America

Also Ranked

#61 on The Greatest Latin American Artists of All Time

#86 on The Greatest Musical Artists of All Time

#32 on The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

#31 on The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams

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