Bands/Musicians The Greatest Flautists of All Time  

Ranker Music
1.6k votes 550 voters 10.2k views 70 items

List Rules The absolute best flautists in history. Vote up the musicians who are the best on the flute.

The flute is a very popular member of the woodwind family. Unlike other woodwind instruments that have a reed on the mouthpiece, like the clarinet, the flute is played by placing the mouth over the opening towards the top, and unless the flautist plays with exact precision the sound just won’t come out right. It's a very delicate instrument that must be played with great accuracy. Who are the greatest flautists of all time who have done this?

The flute has a very soft sound to it and mastering the craft is not just for anyone! But the musicians on this list have earned their place by being the best of the best. This list contains famous flautists, both living and dead, and has been ranked by music lovers to determine the all time best flautists.

This list features the all time greatest flautists including, Andrew Latimer, Buddy Collette, and Czesław Niemen. Vote up the best flute players below and see where the musicians you think are great rank.

1
100 40
James Galway is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
James Galway Pop music, Classical music

2
104 44
Jean-Pierre Rampal is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Jean-Pierre Rampal Classical music, Jazz

3
21 2
Şefika Kutluer is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
AlpanBalkis added Şefika Kutluer Classical

4
137 78
Ian Anderson is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Ian Anderson Blues-rock, Rock music, Folk rock

5
33 10
Aurele Nicolet is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time

6
11 1
Kudsi Ergüner is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
AlpanBalkis added Kudsi Ergüner

7
14 2
Emmanuel Pahud is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
1522896003258 added Emmanuel Pahud Classical music, Jazz

8
6 0
Jasmine Choi is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
harshraj added Jasmine Choi

9
17 7
Herbie Mann is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Marko Subic added Herbie Mann Disco, World music, Jazz

10
26 16
Hubert Laws is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Hubert Laws Classical music, Jazz

11
20 11
Jeanne Baxtresser is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
gnicholls added Jeanne Baxtresser

12
22 14
Dave Valentin is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time

13
41 36
Ron Burgundy is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
bri-gri added Ron Burgundy Jazz, Jazz Funk, Jazz fusion - The most unbelievable jazz flautist of our time.

14
14 10
Jeremy Steig is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Jeremy Steig Jazz fusion, Jazz

15
4 0
Mercan Dede is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
AlpanBalkis added Mercan Dede World music

16
21 18
Jim Lockhart is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
bri-gri added Jim Lockhart Celtic Rock - Member of legendary Irish Celtic rock band, Horslips

17
14 11
Jacques-Martin Hotteterre is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Jacques-Martin Hotteterre Classical; Baroque

18
11 8
Frederick II of Prussia is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Bryan James Umayam added Frederick II of Prussia

19
32 31
Thijs van Leer is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Thijs van Leer Jazz, Progressive rock, Neoclassicism

20
12 10
Trevor Wye is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Trevor Wye Classical music

21
10 8
Marco Di Meco is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
UlfangJilo added Marco Di Meco Jazz, Avant-garde - Italian jazz flutist and composer.

22
10 8
Ray Thomas is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
bri-gri added Ray Thomas Rock music

23
11 10
Bobbi Humphrey is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Bobbi Humphrey Jazz fusion, Jazz

24
15 15
Nestor Torres is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Nestor Torres Classical; contemporary; folk

25
13 13
Peter Gabriel is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
bri-gri added Peter Gabriel New Wave, Pop music, Rock music

26
2 1
Paula Robison is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Brian Fox added Paula Robison

27
11 11
Paul Horn is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Paul Horn New Age, Jazz

28
15 17
Ron Korb is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Ron Korb New Age, World music, Jazz

29
0 0
Paula Robinson is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Brian Fox added Paula Robinson

30
14 16
Yusef Lateef is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Yusef Lateef New Age music, Third stream, Swing music

31
6 8
Gareth McLearnon is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Gareth McLearnon Folk music, Classical music

32
4 6
Doriot Anthony Dwyer is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Doriot Anthony Dwyer Classical music

33
6 9
Andrea Griminelli is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Andrea Griminelli

34
5 8
Roberto Fabbriciani is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Roberto Fabbriciani Classical music

35
5 8
Virginia Hudson is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Virginia Hudson Classical; contemporary

36
5 8
Lew Tabackin is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time

37
4 7
Robert Aiken is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
gnicholls added Robert Aiken Robert Aitken is a Canadian flautist, composer, and specialist in new music.

38
3 6
Jadwiga Kotnowska is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Jadwiga Kotnowska Classical music

39
3 6
Ana Caram is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Ana Caram Bossa nova

40
1 4
Larry Beauregard is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Larry Beauregard Contemporary classical music

41
6 10
Nelson Rangell is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
John Patterson added Nelson Rangell Smooth jazz

42
4 8
Hsu Wei Yen is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
YOmom added Hsu Wei Yen

43
4 8
Alexander Zonjic is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
John Patterson added Alexander Zonjic

44
3 7
Buddy Collette is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Buddy Collette Cool jazz, West Coast jazz, West Coast blues

45
2 6
Burton Cummings is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
bri-gri added Burton Cummings Rock music

46
1 5
Derek Charke is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Derek Charke Classical; contemporary

47
1 5
Henk Lauwers is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Henk Lauwers Classical; contemporary

48
10 16
Herbie Hancock is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Herbie Hancock Kozmigroov, Jazz-funk, Electro

49
5 10
Mindi Abair is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Mindi Abair Pop music, Smooth jazz, Soul music

50
4 9
Elida Inman Tjørve is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Flautists of All Time
Elida Inman Tjørve Classical; contemporary; chamber