Rock The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
224.6k votes 16.6k voters 190.8k views 252 items

List Rules Only metal guitarists or guitar tandems. Guitarists from other genres shouldn't be included, but given the crossover between hard rock and metal, hard rock players are allowed.

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. 
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list ordered by
1
3,761 1,808
Randy Rhoads is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Glam metal, Heavy metal, Neo-classical metal
2
3,323 2,075
Eddie Van Halen is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Popular music, Pop music, Rock music
3
3,473 1,406
Tony Iommi is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Doom metal, Blues-rock, Heavy metal
4
3,174 1,814
Jimmy Page is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Blues-rock, Folk rock, Heavy metal
5
3,444 1,670
Jimi Hendrix is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Blues-rock, Rock music, Experimental rock
6
2,235 1,470
Steve Vai is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Progressive metal, Experimental rock, Instrumental rock
7
3,638 1,806
Dimebag Darrell is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Glam metal, Thrash metal, Groove metal
8
2,567 1,535
Ritchie Blackmore is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Rock music, Heavy metal, Neo-Medieval music
9
3,388 1,570
Dave Mustaine & Marty Friedman is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Dave Mustaine & Marty Friedman
10
2,877 1,829
Kirk Hammett & James Hetfield is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Kirk Hammett & James Hetfield
11
2,163 1,518
Yngwie Malmsteen is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Glam metal, Progressive metal, Instrumental rock
12
2,220 1,186
Glen Tipton & K.K. Downing is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Glen Tipton & K.K. Downing
13
2,505 2,052
Slash is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Glam metal, Blues-rock, Heavy metal
14
2,217 1,197
Joe Satriani is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Rock music, Instrumental rock, Heavy metal
15
2,261 1,591
Angus & Malcolm Young is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Angus & Malcolm Young
16
2,065 1,265
Brian May is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Rock music, Heavy metal, Pop rock
17
2,396 1,337
Zakk Wylde is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Groove metal, Heavy metal, Southern rock
18
2,621 1,149
Dave Mustaine is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Thrash metal, Progressive metal, Heavy metal
19
1,401 1,119
Michael Schenker is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Heavy metal, Hard rock
20
2,369 1,075
Dave Murray & Adrian Smith is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Dave Murray & Adrian Smith
21
1,835 1,015
John Petrucci is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Progressive metal, Instrumental rock, Jazz fusion
22
1,781 1,498
Kirk Hammett is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Thrash metal, Heavy metal, Speed metal
23
1,324 1,117
Alex Lifeson is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Heavy metal, Progressive rock, Hard rock
24
1,096 1,132
Jeff Beck is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Blues-rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock
25
1,072 433
Adrian Smith & Dave Murray is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Metal Guitarists and Guitar Teams
Adrian Smith & Dave Murray Heavy metal, progressive metal, power metal