Some Rants on Rolling Stone Magazine’s Top Ten Greatest Guitarists

The Rolling Stone Magazine spilled another controversial bean—this time not about some Republican scandal or Lady Gaga’s fashion style. It’s a blasphemous list of the greatest guitarists of all time.

It is maybe RSM has finally realized that it is losing its original reader base— the rock and roll aficionados and musicians. So publishing a list of the all-time best guitarists in rock and roll would spark the interests of the readers and energize the sales. It seems like a fool-proof plan, many are buying the thing— albeit for the wrong reasons. The Rolling Stone Magazines burned the last vestiges of its respectable history by capitalizing on making controversy, musical or otherwise.

So to participate in this trending world-wide rage, I created this post to pose two questions, and rant some more.

Who the hell made this list?

Yes, of course, yes I know that the RSM created a sort of board of judges, comprised of professional music experts and rock and roll intellectuals. One of them is Tom Morello. No disrespect for the band, but whut? Considering the general criteria of the list (the list wanted to know who are the most influential and ‘popular’ guitarists),  I think it is better if RSM did a global poll and asked the listeners themselves who they think are the greatest guitarist. This is not an issue of democracy or what, but just plain respect to the talents, man.

Where the hell is (insert guitarist’s name here)?

Time for my own opinions. Jimi of course is great. He expanded what we really meant by word ‘blues’. My hands are down to this great talent. However, I have a personal issue with blues, especially when you hear a lot of blues artists who shred their E-minor pentatonic like there are no other notes on the guitar. By the way…

Keith Richards. Wait, who the hell is Keith Richards? Ah, he is the guitarist of what band? Ah, I see. The Rolling Stone magazine will of course include a Rolling Stone to its roster of best guitarist. Again, no disrespect to this great rocker, but if I would be compelled to choose between him and George Harrison (in terms of creativity and the ability to create licks), I would definitely choose George. And he is not even in the Top Ten.

Many are ranting about Stevie Ray Vaughn not entering Top Ten, but to compare Stevie’s to Jimi’s blues is somewhat a question on musical relevance. Stevie is stunning, but Jimi play the guitar less as an instrument but almost like a body part. Also, the political aspect of Jimi’s “Star  Spangled Banner” makes it special if we compare it to “Texas Flood”, for instance.

I have no question for the other guys on the top of the list (B.B. King created the foundation of rock and roll, Jimmy Page is a brilliant melodic guitarist it, Eric Clapton is somewhat mmmkay, Eddie Van Halen was quite expected).

Now, where the hell is Steve Howe, Phil Keaggy (he is more technically skilled than Hendrix, sorry for the Hendrix lovers out there), Brian May, David Gilmour, Frank Zappa, John Petrucci, Richie Blackmore, Darell Dimebag , Prince, Alex Lifeson, Dave Davies (thank God he invented the distortion sound, now a staple rock tone), Randy Rhoades, or even Yngwie Malmsteen (his playing is quite repetitive, but his influence is enormous to many guitar hero-wannabes)? There are way beyond the list.

Of course, only an idiot would cry over his own favorite guitarists not making it in the Top Ten or whatever. Someone who calls another an idiot because he doesn’t share his belief is also an idiot, so they say. So quite the point is, hello Rolling Stone Mag, nice job out there, stop trying to sound like a rock and roll know-it-all because you are not. You was, but now it isn’t.

By the way, the only thing that makes me comfortable with this list is the fact that Slash isn’t in the Top 30. Thank God. At least the Rolling Stones Magazine still has the edge in discerning the true musical talents from the vain, media-driven rock celebrities.


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