bands/musicians The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

8.3k votes 1.3k voters 171k views 100 items Embed

List Rules Vote up the best jazz guitarists in history

When jazz took the stage it forever changed the world of music. Jazz is infused into almost all genres of music, even subtly. Mastering any kind of guitar is hard enough, but mastering jazz guitar takes even more skill. Who are the greatest jazz guitarists of all time? 
 
The talented musicians on this list are known for being the all time greatest when it comes to jazz guitar. This includes musicians who are both living and dead. Many of these musicians also branched out into other genres of music, including rock and country.
 
This list features the all time greatest jazz guitarists, ranked by the community's votes, and includes Wes Montgomery, Django Reinhardt, and Joe Pass. Vote up the best jazz guitarists in history below, or add someone you think is great if he or she isn't already on the list.

1
+ - 320 56
Joe Pass is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Joe Pass Hard bop, Jazz, Bebop

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2
+ - 308 75
Django Reinhardt is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Django Reinhardt Swing music, Romani music, Gypsy jazz

3
+ - 375 131
Wes Montgomery is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Wes Montgomery Crossover jazz, Hard bop, Smooth jazz

4
+ - 165 41
Barney Kessel is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Barney Kessel Pop music, Cool jazz, Rock music

5
+ - 98 31
Herb Ellis is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Herb Ellis Cool jazz, Swing music, West Coast jazz

6
+ - 161 69
Les Paul is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Les Paul Pop music, Rock music, Rock and roll

7
+ - 252 124
George Benson is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
George Benson Pop music, Rhythm and blues, Jazz

8
+ - 135 56
Charlie Christian is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Charlie Christian Swing music, Big band, Jazz

9
+ - 137 58
Jim Hall is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Jim Hall Cool jazz, Post-bop, Jazz

10
+ - 253 131
Pat Metheny is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Pat Metheny Ethno jazz, Crossover jazz, Pop music

11
+ - 165 77
Kenny Burrell is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Kenny Burrell Cool jazz, Bebop, Blues

12
+ - 156 72
Grant Green is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Grant Green Jazz-funk, Hard bop, Jazz

13
+ - 177 89
John McLaughlin is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
John McLaughlin Kozmigroov, Rock music, World music

14
+ - 116 53
Pat Martino is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Pat Martino Hard bop, Jazz fusion, Post-bop

15
+ - 113 54
John Scofield is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
John Scofield Nu jazz, Jazz-funk, Acid jazz

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16
+ - 139 74
Al Di Meola is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Al Di Meola Chicano rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock

17
+ - 75 32
Larry Coryell is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Larry Coryell Jazz fusion, Post-bop, Jazz

18
+ - 77 34
Tal Farlow is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Tal Farlow Cool jazz, Jazz, Bebop

19
+ - 122 66
Chet Atkins is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Chet Atkins Folk music, Jazz, Country

20
+ - 96 48
Allan Holdsworth is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Allan Holdsworth Instrumental rock, Jazz fusion, Jazz

21
+ - 91 47
Larry Carlton is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Larry Carlton Pop music, Rock music, Smooth jazz

22
+ - 41 11
Freddie Green is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

23
+ - 49 19
Charlie Byrd is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Charlie Byrd Swing music, Brazilian jazz, Latin jazz

24
+ - 56 25
Paco de Lucía is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Paco de Lucía Flamenco, World music, Classical music

25
+ - 69 35
Stanley Jordan is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Stanley Jordan Jazz fusion, Jazz

26
+ - 61 30
Johnny Smith is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Johnny Smith Cool jazz

27
+ - 70 39
Bill Frisell is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Bill Frisell Soundtrack, Americana, Experimental rock

28
+ - 78 46
Jeff Beck is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Jeff Beck Blues-rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock

29
+ - 99 63
Lee Ritenour is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Lee Ritenour Jazz-funk, Pop music, Sophisti-pop

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30
+ - 56 29
Frank Zappa is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Frank Zappa Rock music, Experimental rock, Heavy metal

31
+ - 39 16
Bucky Pizzarelli is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Bucky Pizzarelli Swing music, Big band, Jazz

32
+ - 51 26
John Abercrombie is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
John Abercrombie Avant-garde jazz, Cool jazz, Hard bop

33
+ - 97 64
Carlos Santana is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Carlos Santana Blues-rock, Chicano rock, Pop music

34
+ - 50 26
Lenny Breau is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Lenny Breau Flamenco, Classical music, Jazz

35
+ - 38 17
Eddie Lang is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Eddie Lang Jazz

36
+ - 55 33
Mike Stern is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Mike Stern Rock music, Jazz fusion, Post-bop

37
+ - 42 24
Biréli Lagrène is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Biréli Lagrène Swing music, Gypsy jazz, Jazz fusion

38
+ - 36 20
John Pizzarelli is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
John Pizzarelli Swing music, Jazz

39
+ - 37 21
George Van Eps is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

40
+ - 16 3
Kurt Rosenwinkel is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

41
+ - 48 34
Robben Ford is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Robben Ford Rock music, Jazz fusion, Jazz

42
+ - 32 21
Lonnie Johnson is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Lonnie Johnson St. Louis blues, Jazz blues, Piedmont blues

43
+ - 32 22
Sonny Sharrock is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

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44
+ - 37 27
Gábor Szabó is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Gábor Szabó Crossover jazz, Jazz fusion, Jazz

45
+ - 25 16
Eric Gale is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Eric Gale Pop music, Jazz

46
+ - 30 22
Martin Taylor is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

47
+ - 9 2
Julian Lage is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

48
+ - 25 18
Ralph Towner is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Ralph Towner Ethno jazz, Third stream, Folk music

49
+ - 27 19
Jimmy Bruno is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time

50
+ - 24 18
Steve Khan is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Jazz Guitarists of All Time
Steve Khan Jazz