Rolling Stone assembled a panel of top guitarists and other experts to rank their favorites and explain what separates the legends from everyone else. Featuring:
Dan Auerbach (The Black Keys),
Brian Bell (Weezer),
Ritchie Blackmore (Deep Purple),
Carl Broemel (My Morning Jacket),
Jerry Cantrell (Alice in Chains),
Dave Davies (The Kinks),
Tom DeLonge (Blink-182),
Don Felder (The Eagles),
Kirk Hammett (Metallica),
Robby Krieger (The Doors),
Mike McCready (Pearl Jam),
Dave Mustaine (Megadeth),
Kenny Wayne Shepherd,
Eddie Van Halen,
They voted and Jimi Hendrix the greatest guitarist ever!
Jimi Hendrix exploded our idea of what rock music could be: He manipulated the guitar, the whammy bar, the studio and the stage. On songs like "Machine Gun" or "Voodoo Chile," his instrument is like a divining rod of the turbulent Sixties – you can hear the riots in the streets and napalm bombs dropping in his "Star-Spangled Banner."
His playing was effortless. There's not one minute of his recorded career that feels like he's working hard at it – it feels like it's all flowing through him. The most beautiful song of the Jimi Hendrix canon is "Little Wing." It's just this gorgeous song that, as a guitar player, you can study your whole life and not get down, never get inside it the way that he does. He seamlessly weaves chords and single-note runs together and uses chord voicings that don't appear in any music book. His riffs were a pre-metal funk bulldozer, and his lead lines were an electric LSD trip down to the crossroads, where he pimp-slapped the devil.
There are arguments about who was the first guitar player to use feedback. It doesn't really matter, because Hendrix used it better than anyone; he took what was to become Seventies funk and put it through a Marshall stack, in a way that nobody's done since.
It's impossible to think of what Jimi would be doing now; he seemed like a pretty mercurial character. Would he be an elder statesman of rock? Would he be Sir Jimi Hendrix? Or would he be doing some residency off the Vegas Strip? The good news is his legacy is assured as the greatest guitar player of all time
Read more: rollingstone.com
Until next time keep rockin'
The 0800 Jukebox crew.