The guitar personifies modern music you can find guitar in jazz, rock, metal, country and almost every genre of music played on the radio. Young musicians learn to play guitar in the hopes of becoming the next rock star. While there are plenty or above average guitar players there are only a handful who are true artists who have mastered their instruments. These are the guitar players who have blazed trails and created new sounds, they stand above the others as the greatest guitar legends of all time.
Hands down one of the most creative guitar players of the 20th century Jimi Hendrix’s life ended much too soon he changed how the electric guitar is played. He used everything at his disposal including distortion, feedback and incredible skill to create a new sound. Hendrix couldn’t read or write music himself he rose to fame in a very short time and still influences musicians today. Here is Jimi live at Woodstock.
As the guitar player for the iconic band Led Zeppelin his playing helped define heavy metal. Paged defied limitations and explored the guitar in a way that no one before or since has tried. Pioneering the backwards echo, playing the guitar with a cello bow were just some of the ways Page defined rock music. As part of the band they created some of rocks biggest selling albums, they were also the pioneers of stadium rock. Every guitar player since the 70’s has been influenced by Jimmy Page.
One of the best blues guitarist the world has ever seen, BB King had legions of fans all over the world. King played 300 shows a year for decades and at every one of them he awed fans with his ability to bend a note, near perfect timing and singing with incredible emotion. He played “Lucille” with musicians from every genre imaginable and he was what other musicians aspire to be.
Angus Young first emerged on the scene as the guitar player for AC/DC at 14 years old and is one of hard rock’s emulated guitar players. Although the band made more than a dozen albums they will always be best known for “Back in Black” in the early 80’s. It was with that album that Young became known for his riffs and tight playing style. If you have ever seen him on stage he does all of this flawlessly while jumping all over the stage.
These are just a handful of the many talented guitar players that define greatness. There are greats throughout every genre of music whether you want the driving riffs of hard rock or the melody of an acoustic.