Jazz The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World  

Ranker Music
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4.2k votes 676 voters 10.9k views 131 items

List Rules Vote up all of your favorite jazz guitarists and add any that you don't see on here.

The guitar is one of the most popular and diverse musical instruments in the world. It's permeated through dozens of genres of music, lending itself to help create some of the most moving and emotional pieces of music in history. The people on this list are masters of the guitar and are considered giants in the musical world.  

Whether you recognize these musicians or not, they've all carved a place out for themselves in the music world and have become influential and prominent figures in the industry. If you love geeking out on music, we definitely recommend finding some of their music. 

This list is votable and rerankable, so take a look through and vote up your favorite jazz guitarists. If you don't see someone on here who should be, feel free to add them, but this list is for living musicians only.
list ordered by
1
177 44
Wes Montgomery is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
geber.ramalho added Crossover jazz, Hard bop, Smooth jazz
2
115 48
Joe Pass is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
geber.ramalho added Hard bop, Jazz, Bebop
3
130 62
Pat Metheny is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
looksharp added Ethno jazz, Crossover jazz, Pop music
4
81 22
Django Reinhardt is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Swing music, Romani music, Gypsy jazz
5
94 35
George Benson is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
looksharp added Pop music, Rhythm and blues, Jazz
6
67 26
Jim Hall is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
geber.ramalho added Cool jazz, Post-bop, Jazz
7
87 41
John McLaughlin is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
slaft added Kozmigroov, Rock music, World music
8
65 27
Kenny Burrell is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
looksharp added Cool jazz, Bebop, Blues
9
59 28
Pat Martino is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
looksharp added Hard bop, Jazz fusion, Post-bop
10
67 39
Larry Carlton is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
slaft added Pop music, Rock music, Smooth jazz
11
40 13
Charlie Christian is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Swing music, Big band, Jazz
12
60 24
John Scofield is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
Nu jazz, Jazz-funk, Acid jazz
13
38 10
Gábor Szabó is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Crossover jazz, Jazz fusion, Jazz
14
69 55
Al Di Meola is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
slaft added Chicano rock, Rock music, Instrumental rock
15
35 22
John Abercrombie is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
slaft added Avant-garde jazz, Cool jazz, Hard bop
16
43 34
Bill Frisell is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
looksharp added Soundtrack, Americana, Experimental rock
17
48 34
Biréli Lagrène is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
Swing music, Gypsy jazz, Jazz fusion
18
29 13
Barney Kessel is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Pop music, Cool jazz, Rock music
19
20 11
Emily Remler is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Hard bop, Jazz fusion, Jazz
20
24 10
Tal Farlow is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Cool jazz, Jazz, Bebop
21
45 31
Kurt Rosenwinkel is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
22
15 4
Grant Green is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
Jazz-funk, Hard bop, Jazz
23
22 10
Lenny Breau is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Flamenco, Classical music, Jazz
24
29 26
Larry Coryell is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
slaft added Jazz fusion, Post-bop, Jazz
25
25 14
Herb Ellis is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Jazz Guitarists in the World
picardy37 added Cool jazz, Swing music, West Coast jazz